Traverse City Record-Eagle

Michigan

March 15, 2013

Lawmaker: Ban openly carried guns in schools

(Continued)

Spokesman Ari Adler said Thursday that Bolger had not taken a position on the open-carry legislation.

"The bill will need to move through the committee process where it can be properly vetted to determine if it's the right policy to address the growing concerns over both school safety and the Second Amendment rights of Michigan's gun owners," Adler said.

A gun-rights advocate disputed the contention that there is a "loophole" in the law and opposed any effort to ban all guns in schools, calling the current areas where concealed weapons are off limits "criminal-empowerment zones."

"We support a person's right to defend themselves wherever they are," said Phillip Hofmeister, president of Michigan Open Carry.

He said his group last year made a concession to do away with openly carried guns in gun-free zones because most gun owners would prefer to conceal their weapons while walking in schools and other areas. But since Snyder vetoed the bill, Hofmeister said, the organization is unlikely to support such a trade-off again.

Supporters of Schor's bill say that under current law, law-abiding citizens could be mistaken as being dangerous if they legally openly carry a gun into a school.

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