Guns and Church

On last night’s show, which is still available at this link we for obvious reasons talked a lot about guns in church, and the entire concept of church carry.  I mentioned that my church (which I haven’t been to in a while) has armed security staff on hand, complete with little earbud radios.  I suspect that these guys are off duty cops or Special Deputies, but it doesn’t invalidate the point that my church has chosen to go the armed security route.

And yet, despite that, I still carry to church.  We have a limited number of armed security, and they can’t be in every place at once – as was said several times, it’s my responsibility to defend myself and my family.

One of the items I wish we’d had more time to discuss last night was the actual dynamics of a situation like that.  Bonnie brought it up when she was talking about how there had been kids running around, and in the event someone had returned fire, they would have run the risk of hitting a kid.  Now, the anti-gunners would have us all believe that that’s exactly what a CCW holder is going to do – light the place up indiscriminately, which we all know is bullshit.  But it does serve to reinforce my opinion that in a crowd like that, you don’t shoot unless you absolutely have to, i.e. the shooter is in between you and your getaway, or you’ve got a really clean shot and are “as cool as the other side of the pillow”.

I think we can all agree that gunfights are a Bad Thing(tm) that should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.  That rule goes double for gunfights in places with blind angles and lots and lots of innocent bystanders.  This is a big part of why I say that anyone who is going to carry concealed should really get training with their carry gun – go to gun school and learn everything you can.  I’m not saying that a weekend at gun school is going to turn you into a long-range-low-heat tactical operator capable of making headshots on running targets at 25 yards, but it will certainly help you refine the skills you need to be able to defend yourself and your family in a crisis situation.


  1. That was my point – anyone who’d had training wasn’t going to fire at that guy, anyway, because they would have run the risk of hitting the patrons who were rushing him, as well as the kids who were, presumably, behind him in the staging area. A trained gun user would have recognized the risk.

  2. Carrying a gun in a church may be a Class D felony in Indiana. Indiana law prohibits carrying “in or on school property.” Indiana law also defines “school property” as including, among other things, “licensed day care facilities,” “child care ministries” and “all nonprofit programs …to … benefit children who are at least three years of age but not yet enrolled in kindergarten.” Most churches offer some programs like these. There”s an Indiana Supreme Court decision holding that a church that operated a pre-school was “school property.” This is a ‘strict liability” crime–no intent requirement.

    Although Indiana is, on the whole, a gun-friendly state, the “school-property exception is quite broad and very vague. And the Indiana Supreme Court does not seem disposed to interpret the law sensibly.

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