Allowing more people at Fort Hood to carry guns could have served as a deterrent to Wednesday’s shooting, according to a survivor of the 2009 shooting on the Texas base. Retired Army Staff Sergeant Alonzo Lunsford advised critics that “there’s not a need to have fear of guns” in the hands of military personnel at the base.
The shooter in Wednesday’s massacre was examined by a psychiatrist last month but had not been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, nor had he shown violent or suicidal tendencies, Army secretary John McHugh told reporters. McHugh added that the soldier did not see combat during his deployment to Iraq, did not appear to have connections to extremist groups, and had been prescribed Ambien to deal with a sleeping problem.
Lunsford said a gunman would have to think twice about entering a zone where the right to bear arms was not infringed.
“Had it been where other service members would have had guns or weapons on them at that time, I don’t think that that specialist would have reacted the way that he was reacting,” Lunsford, who was shot seven times in the first rampage, told MSNBC on Thursday.
He said the alleged shooter, who took his own life, was potentially calling for help through his deadly actions and used the gun as “a tool to capture someone’s attention.”
Texas representatives John Carter and Roger Williams, both Republicans, have encouraged allowing personnel at Fort Hood to be armed in the aftermath of Wednesday’s shooting.