CTI, with Texas IAF, Bishops & Faithful Call on Lt. Governor and Senate to Reject 'Permitless Carry' Legislation
Bishops, rabbis, clergy and faithful from across Texas convened to express vocal opposition to the passage of proposed legislation HB1927 which would allow "permitless carry" in the state of Texas.
Catholic Bishop Mark Seitz referenced the massacre in El Paso which resulted in dozens of residents dead and seriously injured. Baptist Rev. Darryl Crooms from San Antonio testified to the "unnaturalness" of adults burying children. Lutheran Rev. Jessica Cain testified to the impact of last weekend's shooting in North Austin on local worshippers. Rabbi David Lyon recalled last year's deadly shooting in Santa Fe High School.
Together -- with Lutheran Bishop Erik Gronberg, Episcopal Bishop Suffragan Kathryn Ryan, Methodist Director of Missional Outreach Andy Lewis, Dallas Catholic Bishop Gregory Kelly and several lay leaders -- all expressed concern that passage of HB1927 would increase gun violence. States that have passed similar laws, removing the required license and training needed to carry a handgun, experienced spikes in homicides and gun violence. From Central Texas Interfaith, Reverend Paul Skeith of SoCo Episcopal chaired the press conference and Jessica Cain, of Living Word Lutheran in Buda, testified to the fear that worshippers faced following the weekend shooting in Austin.
“Our faith tradition teaches us to protect life,” said Bishop Suffragan Kathryn M. Ryan of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas. “You cannot protect life if people carrying deadly weapons aren’t properly trained and licensed.
"You’ll find no scripture that will support this kind of legislation,” said Pastor John Ogletree, First Metropolitan Church of Houston.
“It makes our church much less safe,” said El Paso Bishop Mark Seitz.
Texas Faith Leaders Come Out Against 'Permitless Carry', CBS Austin [pdf]
Stand with our brothers and sisters in El Paso (and 100,000 fellow Texans) in the fight for smarter gun policies.
Add your voice to the call on Senator John Cornyn to advance legislation before it is too late!
Read Rabbi Reice's Oped:
Gun Owners Can -- and Should! -- Work to End Gun Violence
[In photo: Bishop Doyle of the Texas Episcopal Diocese signs Central Texas Interfaith’s gun safety petition after a service at All Saints in Austin.]
Senator John Cornyn:
As residents, voters, and faith leaders we call on you as a Senior Senator representing Texas to ensure that the Senate votes on legislation that addresses the repeated gun violence plaguing our communities. HR8 and HR112 have already passed in the house. We ask you to bring these bills to the Senate for a vote, including the ones below once they pass the house:
- Enhance background checks (HR 1112 & HR 8);
- Restrict high-capacity magazines (HR 1186);
- Pass a federal “red flag” law to prevent those deemed a risk to themselves or others from accessing firearms (HR 1236).