Last night, as a follow-up to the tragedy at Fort Hood on Wednesday, I appeared on Al-Jazeera America for an interview about how to maintain safety on military bases for personnel and contractors. That’s viewable here, and covers questions about what can be done to prevent future instances like this from happening. As Gen. Mark Milley noted in his press conference yesterday, increased screening from weapons would cause Fort Hood to grind to a halt, and isn’t a viable solution to this issue.
I was specifically asked about Rep. Steve Stockman’s bill to change a 1993 law passed when President Clinton was in office — Stockman’s proposal would allow military personnel to carry weapons on base in order to protect themselves and others from active shooter situations. As I said in the interview, as long as there are safeguards to keep people with mental illnesses from possessing weapons, I think that it’s appropriate for at least officers and NCOs to be able to carry weapons. As we saw with Wednesday’s incident, an armed MP arriving on the scene just minutes after the first 911 call was able to keep Ivan Lopez from taking more lives — and by having more people on base experienced in firing weapons, in place to be able to stop active shooting situations, the likelihood for such tragedies would decrease.