On April 1, the Georgia state Senate passed a constitutional carry bill allowing law-abiding adults who are legally allowed to carry a concealed firearm, to do so without first having to obtain government permission. 

According to the National Rifle Association (NRA), the Georgia General Assembly also passed House Bill 218, which states that Georgia must be universal recognition of non- Georgia residents’ constitutional carry permits issued by any other state and that the Georgia Attorney General should work on formulating agreements with other states requiring them to recognize a Georgia Weapons Carry License. Essentially, Bill 218 protects the carry rights of Georgia residents and visitors to Georgia who cross state lines. 

Once Governor Brian Kemp signs the first bill into law, Georgia will become the 25th state allowing constitutional carry. Ultimately, it would result in half of the 50 states not requiring gun owners to obtain a license from the state to carry a firearm in public. 

Kemp said on Twitter, endorsing the new bill, that he believes the Constitution should be the carry permit and that he is in fact “looking forward” to signing it. 

Although the law would still ban people from carrying firearms into secured areas of airports or government buildings, like the state Capitol, it is still a dangerous and tactless moment. Kemp’s plans to move forward with this bill sets us back as a society. 

For starters, the bill is not imperative in terms of keeping in line with the constitution. The second amendment explicitly states that “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.” Nowhere in the Constitution does it say that the only way to protect this right is to allow people to carry without a license. 

Under the current statutes Georgians can bear arms; they are not limited in their ability to do so by the permit requirements any more than they are the age restriction. 

The constitutional carry bill eliminates a step in the process. It does not alleviate a limitation that prevented people from bearing a gun entirely. 

In addition, Georgia already lacks restrictions that adequately protect against the potential for gun violence. As mentioned before, there is an age restriction to owning a gun in Georgia. To legally own a gun in this state, an individual must be at least 18 years of age to own a handgun. But, under federal law, individuals cannot buy a gun until the age of 21. On top of all of that, Georgia does not even require background checks when buying from a private seller. 

Once an individual has possession of a gun in Georgia, they can carry it without a permit in their vehicle if it is in the glove compartment, console or similar compartment of a vehicle, or in an open manner and fully exposed to view. This went into effect in 2017, according to Justia, a searchable and browsable database of all US Supreme Court decisions since 1790. 

In 2021, there were at least 45 shootings on roadways in the Atlanta area, killing 15 people and injuring others, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. 

In another article from the Washington Post, Savannah Police Chief Roy W. Minter Jr. noted his city had more than 100 guns stolen out of unlocked vehicles in 2021. 

We haven’t seen the repercussions of a constitutional carry bill in Georgia yet, but what we have seen is that without restricting firearms in vehicles, crimes related to guns in cars only increased. Who’s to say that the same will not happen in other circumstances given the implementation of even less restrictions? 

We also haven’t seen any immediate benefit. In fact, a study conducted by the National Bureau of Economic Research in 2018 concluded there was no data supporting the claim that right-to-carry laws reduce violent crime. 

It’s sickening and exhausting to see political parties keep using laws and elections to play games with our lives. That’s what’s at stake here: people’s lives. And gun control isn’t the only topic of discussion where this is prevalent but it is one of the most directly harmful. 

Democracy requires compromise and civility. Sometimes it means diverting our energy and our efforts to discussions that matter rather than arguing for the sake of arguing or trying to win favor with your party during an election season. 

It’s going to take multiple steps to reduce the risk of mass shootings in America. It shouldn’t, but it will. The devastation and grief brought about by gun violence needs to be met with more attentive regulations and precautions. This constitutional carry bill is addressing the wrong concerns surrounding gun control, ultimately doing a disservice to our society and those who have suffered as a result of gun violence 

Posted by Campus Carrier

4 Comments

  1. E'et Schitt-U'Commey April 7, 2022 at 3:26 pm

    An armed society, is a polite society. You’d do well to remember that. Sacramento had a lot of gun control, but criminals (people who break laws… The laws you want signed that will only restrict law abiding citizens) still ended up killing 6 and injuring multiple people. Also, that 300% gun buying surge suggests the rest of the country disagrees with your opinion.

    Reply

  2. “Nowhere in the Constitution does it say that the only way to protect this right is to allow people to carry without a license.” See? This is how they do it. They ignore, deflect, distract and offer specious arguments,

    First, nowhere in the Constitution does it say that a license is required in order to be armed. See? Wuddya do with THAT?

    Second, the Constitution DOES say that citizens are allowed to carry without a license. It doesn’t say that’s the ONLY way because that qualification isn’t needed. It’s already included!

    Where, you ask? Good golly, can’t you read? It says “MAY NOT BE INFRINGED!!!”

    Reply

    1. To complete my comment above:

      The 2A is the simplest of all the amendments to understand because it is the only one which includes its own inherent, empirical authority and qualification. It is abundantly clear to anyone who chooses to be intellectually honest.

      Now, ok, there have been some reasonable and practical tweaks offered over the years (mostly lately).

      So first, those have to go thru the Constitutional Convention process and be successfully ratified.

      Second, we who support citizens’ gun rights MIGHT OTHERWISE be willing to discuss this, but the other side will not be reasonable and can’t be trusted. Therefore, we leave it as is!

      Reply

  3. More of the same fear mongering. “Its going to be like the wild west”. I have news for you, the wild west was nothing like it was portrayed in the dime novels. there weren’t daily shootings and lawlessness.
    Requiring someone to get a license to carry a gun is not going to stop the shootings. In case you hadn’t noticed the shootings are carried out by criminals, and criminals don’t follow the laws, making them criminals. What requiring a license will do is prevent some from being able to carry a gun to protect themselves from the a fore mentioned criminals.
    I think constitutional carry is a wonderful idea and it has worked well in all of the other states that have implemented it, and they haven’t had rampant killings like you are trying to infer GA will have

    Reply

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