Gun control becomes a hot topic at NCWV

BRIDGEPORT, W.Va (WDTV) — Following the recent spate of mass shootings, the gun control debate is once again in the spotlight, including in West Virginia.

With the recent school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, gun control has become a hot topic.

Many people have asked how to make America safer to ensure a shooting like this never happens again.

In West Virginia, Bishop Mark Brennan of the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston urged Governor Justice to ban assault weapons.

Justice made its first statement Tuesday on the matter, saying the state did not need a ban.

Justice instead suggested increasing school security and banning those under 21 from buying assault-type weapons.

ATR Performance at Fairmont sells all types of firearms, from handguns to rifles to shotguns.

Salesman Ryan Tacy says there was no reason the shooting happened in the first place, but pulling guns out is a bad decision.

“A lot of negative action came into play with this. It could have been much better avoided if there had been permanent operating procedures. If the school had been locked down as it was supposed to be and to other things like that, a lot more things could have been avoided,” Tacy said.

In the state of West Virginia, you must be 18 to legally own a firearm. Tacy says a background check can’t do much.

He goes on to say that if anyone wants a gun, they will find a way to get one legally.

“We already have a thorough background check that we have to send out to people, it actually goes through the FBI. The thing about it is on our end, we’re allowed to have less than 1% failure rate, so the forms literally have to be perfect on our end,” Tacy said.

Tacy says there are many reasons to own a gun, like defending yourself against things you wouldn’t normally be able to do or just having a hobby.

“Having a gun is really important because gun rights are for everyone. It doesn’t matter your race, your religion, any kind of creed, your sexuality. Guns are a very good equalizer. If you’re a short person or have a physical disability, it evens the playing field if someone wants to impose their will on you,” Tacy said.

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Jessica C. Bell