Local Trapshooting Coach Fires Back At Lawmaker's ProposalPosted: Updated:
Dave Winters pioneered the sport of trapshooting in New York state when he helped establish the Belleville Henderson trapshooting team in 2016.
Since then, schools across the state have picked up the sport in their respective athletic programs.
"This year, we have a total of 59 teams with just under 1,200 student athletes competing around New York," said Winters.
On April 20, New York Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal introduced a bill that would end riflery, trapshooting and archery as a sport in public schools.
"A rise in gun violence and school shootings in recent years has spurred a long overdue re-evaluation of their place in our students' curriculum," said Rosenthal.
Winters says that from his coaching standpoint, safety comes first.
"Each team is required to go over a safety protocol - how to use a firearm, how to handle a firearm - just for both students and coaches. That is being pushed every week throughout the season," said Winters.
In trapshooting, players shoot clay targets that are thrown into the air. Winters says the guns are locked away until the team meets for practice once a week.
"The bill has directly taken aim at trapshooting for the fact that is - I don't know if the legislator who proposed this has actually fired a firearm, has tried trapshooting - and I'm more than willing to show her firsthand and invite her up here," said Winters.
We tried reaching out to Assemblywoman Rosenthal, but she was unavailable for comment.