Gun control advocates urge lawmakers to reject bills that would loosen Kentucky's gun laws
Moms Demanding Action holds rally in Capitol Rotunda
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDRB) -- There is a gunfight at the Kentucky State Capitol. The fight is over who is allowed to carry a gun and where.
Hollon Holm of Louisville has joined the battle. He knows gun violence first hand, having survived the deadly shooting at Heath High School in Paducah in 1997.
"I was shot in the head. Thankfully, I don't have a lot of after-effects, physically. But that's something you carry with you every day," Holm told WDRB.
Then, after the shooting at Marshall High School last month, Holm said he got angry – angry enough to speak out at an anti-gun rally at the Capitol on Wednesday.
"Twenty years of gun violence in schools is 20 years too many," Holm told the crowd to cheers and applause.
The rally was organized by the group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.
The groups is targeting three bills that would loosen restrictions on guns in Kentucky.
"We refuse to believe that nothing can be done. We refuse to give up," said Connie Coartney, the leader of the group’s Kentucky chapter.
Rep. Wesley Morgan is the sponsor of one of the bills the group has in its sights. House Bill 36 allows concealed carry of guns without a permit.
"What I'm saying is you have a constitutional right to carry that gun, and it shall not be infringed. Period," said Morgan.
Lawmakers have also filed bills to allow guns on college campuses (HB 210), and permit armed civilian marshals in public schools (SB 103).
"The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun," Morgan said.
For Morgan, the gun debate is a constitutional issue.
"Can you imagine I if said that in order to exercise your First Amendment right to free speech, that you would have to get a permit and pay $60 to do that?he asked.
For Holm and those who gathered in the Rotunda, it's a common sense issue.
"Having more guns in a crisis situation, leads to more problems, not less problems," said Holm.
Both sides argue they want what is best for public safety.
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