Absolutely packed with kids. These are the images at any number of the Tulsa's parks, and the in heads of several city councilors today when faced with getting the city's gun policy in line with the state's.
"We shouldn't allow guns at all in any of our parks," said Tulsa city councilor Skip Steele.
But state law says it's ok to have guns in parks, and in fact has been for over a decade. The ordinance in T-town though says it's not ok.
"I look at this not as a city councilor, but as a parent," says Tulsa city councilor GT Bynum.
And, he says, its disingenuous for politicians to talk about voting on it while protected by metal detectors, guards, and gun free zones like city hall.
"But my little kids won't have any of that at the parks we're talking about," he said.
Meanwhile at the parks...
"I have a concealed carry, but I don't carry it here," said parent David Treadwell. His toddler at play at 41st & Riverside. He does carry a gun every know and then, but not at the park.
"I just don't feel that it's needed here. Would you feel weird bringing your gun here? Absolutely," he said.
But then, there's this to think about...
"There was a girl last year that was actually shot at a park," said Sarah Sapp, remembering the murders of Ethan Nichols and Carissa Horton in September of 2011 while walking at Hicks Park. What if a law abiding, gun carrying citizen had been nearby at the same time?
"On the flip side there is that possibility, and it is nice to know that there are just regular day citizens that would be able to be there and to be able to protect just in case something like that were to go on," she said.
The next tug of war gun debate. To pack at the park or not.
"I am just appalled that we would be looking at trying to make sure that people have the legal right to openly carry a gun in a park," said Tulsa city councilor Jack Henderson.
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