North Carolina is caught in a legal bind over a controversial issue with a twist: Allowing churchgoers to pack heat but not if the congregation meets on school property.
North Carolina law allows worshipers to carry a concealed weapon on church grounds, with the approval of the church, and that issue has gained more attention after the deadly church shooting in Tarrant County, Texas, where a gunman killed two deacons before being shot and killed by a trained security team leader during the church service.
Mark Creech of the Christian Action League of North Carolina says state law does not allow firearms in any school and that, he says, creates a problem for churches that meet on school property.
"It could only mean,” he warns, “that parishioners would be entirely vulnerable [from] some mass shooter motivated by their ethno-religious, or anti-Christian hate, or some other ungodly reason, God forbid.”
The loophole hasn't totally escaped the notice of North Carolina lawmakers, however: Rep. Rena Turner introduced a bill last year that would have authorized churchgoers at a school-based church to carry a handgun -- but only outside of school hours.
"The legislation was more than reasonable,” Creech insists. "It passed the North Carolina House quite easily but was never taken up by the Senate and it died a quiet death there."
That means the bill would have to start over this year and Rep. Turner, meanwhile, has retired.
Creech tells OneNewsNow he is looking for another House sponsor and is also encountering resistance in the state Senate.
"There are certain members in the leadership that seem to be holding this up," he says. "It's time that they stop trying to hold this up. People are vulnerable."