On July 1st, the new Safe Carry Protection Act of 2014 which was signed by Governor Nathan Deal back in April will go into effect across the state of Georgia. According to an end of session analysis by the non partisan state senate research office House Bill 60 will expand the rights of gun owners in various ways.
This will include allowing people with a license to carry a gun the right to carry in bars and associated parking facilities (though gun holders can be forced to leave upon notice by the property owner), government buildings (except where entry is typically screened during business hours by security personnel), places of worship (with approval), as well as school safety zones with approval from school officials.
As reported by the Washington Post, the bill will also expand Georgia’s “Stand your Ground” law, get rid of the need for firearms dealers to maintain record of sales and purchases for state purposes, suspend the governor’s authority to suspend or limit the carrying or sale of guns, making banning or restricting lawful firearm possession in public housing illegal, expand the pre-emption of local laws, remove the fingerprinting requirement for license renewals, as well as not allow the maintenance of a database of information on license holders that spans multiple jurisdictions
As the question goes If you see someone pull a gun threatening to harm others, do you wish you had a gun so you could shoot them down? Or do you wish the other person didn’t have a gun at all? The debate is neverending as one side will say that if there’s no guns we wouldn’t be faced with this decision while the other believes its unrealistic to think that guns can be kept out of the hands of those intent on hurting others.
Ultimately there’s no solution in which everyone is happy.
According to some HB 60 is considered the most sweeping pro-gun measure passed in the US this year with opponents like the “Americans For Responsible Solutions,” calling it “extremism in action,” and proponents like GeorgiaCarry.org which lobbied for the bill calling the bill “meaningful pro-gun legislation.”
My problem with this new law coming into effect in the state of Georgia is that it does not truly help anyone. Why do we need guns in churches? A place of worship is one of the last places I would expect anyone to want or need a gun, so who does it help? Why do we need guns in bars? Since when have alcohol and guns been a combination that logically makes sense, how does that help reduce violence? Why do we need guns in schools? I only think of places like here at Tech where students already realize that they are overstressed with a heavy workload at all times. Would a gun help with these frustrations or lead to consequences no one wants to see? Or why not have records of license gun owners or where people are purchasing these guns? For me personally there are just too many questions that result from this legislation rather than answers or solutions to reducing gun violence and violent crime.
Two weeks ago I lost a family member to this gun violence, they were found in Southwest Atlanta shot and killed in their car. We don’t know the circumstances behind this shooting and nobody including the police have been able to provide information as to a motive behind this.
Do I wish that they had a gun in his car? No. Do I wish that whoever shot them did not have access to a gun at all? Yes. To me more people on the streets with access to guns does nothing but result in more injuries and violence. I do believe that continuing to expand gun rights in Georgia and across the country is the wrong way to go, and all I really want to see is an end to unnecessary violence.