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Packing heat in the house of God

“Personal safety” is a sufficient reason for carrying a gun to church, according to Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.

While a long standing Virginia law makes it a misdemeanor to bring a gun to a “place of worship” during a “meeting for religious purposes” without “good and sufficient reason,” Cuccinelli concludes that “self-defense and personal protection” is enough to justify a firearm at church.

Cuccinelli’s April 8 opinion makes it clear, however, that any house of worship can decide on its own to ban weapons.

The attorney general’s opinion comes in response to an inquiry from Del. Mark Cole, R-Fredericksburg, but Cuccinelli’s office reports Cole’s was the third inquiry from a legislator about the issue in the last year.

-By Peter Vieth

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