BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Gun legislation continues to be a hot topic in the state of Alabama. During this legislative session, a constitutional carry bill, or HB 44, is expected to be discussed among lawmakers.
News that Alabama may be the next state to have a permit-less carry law has drawn attention from those for and against it. Those for the bill say it supports their second amendment rights, while those against it argue it puts everybody’s safety in jeopardy.
“This bill, however, makes concession for the desires of some, but not the good will of all,” Pastor Noah Rocker of Life Church said.
“We just don’t feel like we should pay for a permission slip to enjoy a constitutional right,” Gene Piatkowski, board member of Bama Carry Inc., said.
During a protest at DeBardeleben Park Monday, several pastors and local leaders voiced their opposition against HB 44. Pastor Rocker believes the passing of this bill could also put law enforcement in harms ways.
“This legislation is not going to support any type of safety, any type of security,” Rocker said.
Many in law enforcement have voiced their opposition against constitutional carry due to the fact it can impact some of the funding they can get from carry permits. Blount County Sheriff Mark Moon sent CBS 42 this statement on his thoughts about HB 44:
“There are also sheriffs that have real concerns with gun crime like gang violence and the permit is a tool for them to help reduce gangs activity and some gun crimes. I don’t have to deal with the same issues that counties like Montgomery and Russell and Mobile and other deal with so I can’t speak to their issues.”Blount County Sheriff Mark Moon
But Piatkowski argues that isn’t the case.
“What they fail to realize is that once you’re not require to buy a permit, it does not do away with the permits,” he said.
Piatkowski also claims with HB 44 approved, more people could buy carry permits.
“And it dawns on them, that if I want to go to a neighboring state, I need to have a license. So, I can enjoy bringing that property to that state,” he said.
While both sides may disagree, they each have the same common goal: protecting everyone in Alabama.
“Please do not mistake our opposition of this bill with rejection to any citizens rights granted by the second amendment of the United States Constitution,” Rocker said.
“And we’re against gun violence. Nobody wants that,” Piatkowski said.
Representatives tell CBS 42 that they don’t expect HB 44 or any other gun legislation to be brought up before February.