Senator Ted Cruz: Why Do We Maintain Gun-Free Zones on Military Bases?

AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

On April 19, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) told gun owners at a Litchfield, New Hampshire, hunting club that it is past time to examine gun-free zones on military bases and to find a way to change the policy so soldiers can protect themselves.

Cruz cited three gun-related attacks in gun-free zones since November 2009 to emphasize his point: Fort Hood (2009), DC Navy Yard (2013), and Fort Hood (2014).

These attacks were all carried out on military installations by gunmen who passed background checks for their firearms. So the situation has not arisen from a lack of gun control, but from conditions created in a climate where there is so much gun control that innocent people cannot defend their own lives.

According to Politico, Cruz said, “I am very concerned about that policy. I think it’s very important to have a public discussion about why we’re denying our soldiers the ability to exercise their Second Amendment rights.”

Cruz told gun owners in Litchfield that he is “pressing” Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain for “hearings on whether soldiers should be allowed to carry their own concealed firearms onto military bases.”

Military gun-free zones were implemented just months into the Clinton presidency. The Washington Times reported that “one of President Clinton’s first acts upon taking office in 1993 was to disarm U.S. soldiers on military bases.”

On April 3, 2014, Breitbart News reported that the original directive relating to military gun-free zones, 5210.56, was issued during the last months of President George H.W. Bush’s presidency. Then, AR 190-14, a regulation that revised and implemented 5210.56, was issued just months into the Clinton presidency.

Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at


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