Two mayoral candidates proudly flashed their concealed carry gun permits to the audience attending a town-hall style gathering sponsored by the Bradley County Republican Party while pledging their unwavering support for the Second Amendment.
The event was held Tuesday evening at The Venue at Creekside in Cleveland.
During the event, both candidates, former Tennessee State Rep. Kevin Brooks and former educator Duane Schriver made statements, as well answered questions from the audience. Although not a debate, each candidate was given the opportunity to answer questions.
The question regarding support for the Second Amendment was asked by audience member Jeffery Lewis, who claimed that Cleveland Chief of Police Mark Gibson did not support open carry gun laws.
“I’ve always been a Second Amendment person,” Schriver responded.
Brooks also agreed that he supported the Second Amendment and added that it protects other constitutional rights.
“We would not have a First Amendment without a Second Amendment,” Brooks said.
Although normally not an issue in a mayoral race, support for the Second Amendment was one of several points on which both candidates agreed.
To clarify what Chief Gibson has said regarding carrying guns: In a March 14 article published in the Cleveland Daily Banner, Chief Gibson said that “His personal opinion is that teachers should not be pressured to carry guns — especially if they are not comfortable with the idea. He noted professionals like police officers go into their line of work knowing they will need to use guns to protect those around them, but teachers do not.”
"It doesn't make things less dangerous; it just puts more guns in the situation," Gibson said.