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Permitting Weapons in Houses of Worship

The Virginia House of Delegates will vote tomorrow, February 6th, on a bill that would repeal the Virginia law that restricts carrying dangerous weapons into places of worship. Currently, weapons are prohibited unless a person has “good and sufficient reason” to carry a gun, pistol, bowie knife, dagger, or other dangerous weapon into a house of worship. HB1180, introduced by Delegate Dave LaRock, would lift this prohibition.

The JCRC of Greater Washington is concerned that lifting the limitation of “good and sufficient reason” would pose increased risks to public safety as anyone could walk into a house of worship with a weapon unless there was an explicit sign or verbal communication prohibiting weapons. This could significantly increase incidents of violence in synagogues, churches, mosques, and other places of worship.

The sanctity of life and the abhorrence of senseless violence are fundamental to Judaism – we urge you to speak out against this bill.

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  • Your State Representative or Representatives

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Vote No on HB1180 Permitting Weapons in Houses of Worship

Dear [Decision Maker],

I write today on behalf of the Jewish community to urge you to vote NO on HB1180 (LaRock), which would repeal the statutory prohibition on dangerous weapons in houses of worship without "good and sufficient reason."

The sanctity of life and the abhorrence of senseless violence are fundamental to Judaism and I am concerned that this bill would pose increased risks to public safety as it would permit anyone to enter a house of worship with a dangerous weapon unless there was an explicit sign or verbal communication prohibiting weapons. This could significantly increase incidents of violence in synagogues, churches, mosques, and other places of worship.

Please vote NO on HB1180 so that all people can continue to worship and pray in peace.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,
[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State ZIP]
[Your Email]