Sailors at Reserve Centers Will Be Armed

photo from thehill.com.

The ability for active military personnel and their families to be armed is in the spotlight again this week.

First, the U.S. Navy announced it will move forward will a plan to arm military personnel at reserve centers across the country, effective immediately, according to this story from FoxNews. The new police comes in the wake of an attack last month at a Navy Reserve Center in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Sailors at reserve centers that are not on military installations, such as the one in Chattanooga, will be authorized to carry weapons, according to a Navy spokesman, Cmdr. William Marks, who said armed guards will be posted at the centers as "a matter of prudent and necessary action toward protecting our personnel."

He added that additional measures are being considered, and that sailors will be trained to protect the reserve centers in accordance with Navy regulations. An email sent to Naval reservists called to recruit men for 45 days of "armed sentry watchstander duty" that will begin this month.

Also this week, a group of Republican congressmen are pushing to make it easier for military spouses to buy firearms, introducing legislation that would allow the husband or wife of a service member to buy a gun in the state where their spouse is stationed. The bill would also allow them to buy a gun in a neighboring state if the service member crosses a state's border to go to their base, according to this story from thehill.com.

Currently, military spouses, like most other Americans, are restricted to buying firearms in the state in which they are resident.

Sen. Mike Rounds of South Dakota pointed to the recent shooting in Chattanooga as a reason for the legislation.

"At a time of increased threats on military bases and to members of our Armed Forces, it is as important as ever to give military families the opportunity to protect themselves and their loved ones," he said in a statement.

Rep. Scott Rigell of Virginia has introduced similar legislation in the House.