There once was a time when I opposed concealed handgun carry legislation in Texas. My fear at the time was that there might be shootouts at traffic intersections between motorists who would turn fender-benders into something quite different.
Those fears have not materialized. I have recognized the absence of such roadside mayhem. I also have acknowledged my acceptance of concealed carry permits in Texas, if not an outright endorsement of them.
Does that carry over to allowing firearms in houses of worship? Yes, we had a shootout in a church in White Settlement today. The gunman killed a parishioner and seriously wounded another one before churchgoers returned fire and killed the bad guy.
One relatively successful incident involving firearms in churches does not, in my mind, make for a successful policy. I still fear the consequence of a pistol-packing worshiper opening fire in response to a gunman and missing the target badly, resulting in collateral casualties.
Plus, there just is something bizarre and unholy about allowing worshipers to bring loaded firearms with them while they take communion and say their prayers to God.
The day might come when I’ll accept the notion of guns in the church pew. Just not yet.
In the meantime, I’ll pray that the White Settlement churchgoer recovers from the wound inflicted. I also will express my gratitude from some distance that the parishioners who took out the gunman knew what to do when the gunfire erupted.