The Gross National Debt

Friday, March 21, 2014

Georgia's new Gun Law - Part I

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In what gun rights activists are hailing as awesome news and gun grabbers are moaning, the Georgia Legislature passed a sorta bill codifying more rights into Georgia’s law. The idea that gun grabbers are appalled gives me cause to rejoice. That this bill is minor in most areas annoys me.

I call it a “sorta” bill because that is what it is.

To start with, this is a bill from the State Legislature. No action by a legislative body is permanent, except one to disband. So, what has been done can be undone.

Here’s the specifics on HB 60 followed by my take on ‘em

    •    Prohibit the state from creating and maintaining a database of WCL holders.

The state. Says nothing about local Probate Courts, which issue said permits, from keeping and maintaining database. This is a useless - neutral item. Henceforth referred to as UNI.

    •    State that under a declared state of emergency, all law-abiding gun owners will not have their Second Amendment rights restricted or infringed by executive authority through Emergency Powers protection.

Ehhh, OK. Considering what happened in New Orleans this is probably a good idea.

    •    Strengthen current firearms preemption statutes through further clarification of the regulatory authority of local governments, excluding firearm discharge ordinances.

Possibly good. But the existing laws are pretty straightforward on what local governments can do where guns are concerned.

    •    Create an absolute defense for the legal use of deadly force in the face of a violent attack.

A strengthening of the current Castle Defense law. Good news.

    •    Allow for the use of firearm sound suppressors while hunting.

About bloody time!

    •    Remove fingerprinting for renewal of Weapons Carry Licenses (WCL).

UNI. Once done, the fingerprints are in a database. Once there, they can never be removed.

    •    Lower the age to obtain a concealed WCL for self-defense from 21 to 18 for active duty military, with specific training.

Pushing close to UNI. When a person turns 18, they are an adult. Period. No ifs. No ands. Not buts. Quit plugging in exceptions.

    •    Repeal the unnecessary and duplicative state-required license for a firearms dealer, instead requiring only a Federal Firearms License (FFL).

Good.

    •    Prohibit a ban on firearms in public housing, ensuring that the right to self-defense should not be infringed based on where one calls home.

Probably the best single provision of this law. Needed. Welcome. Thank you General Assembly.

    •    Codify the ability to legally carry, with a WCL, in sterile/non-secure areas of airports.

Should have already been in the law. Good.

    •    Include a provision that would have the state report those persons who have been involuntarily hospitalized or have been adjudicated mentally deficient to the NICS system while also providing ability for relief through an application process to the court system for the purpose of restoration of rights.

UNI. Already exists

    •    Create an opt-in provision legally authorizing churches to make the decision to permit or prohibit carrying a firearm with a WCL within their confines, and lowering the penalty for violation to a civil infraction carrying no more than a $100.00 fine.  

Excellent. A church, being private property, should be treated as such. None of government’s business who does what inside provided no one is being harmed.

    •    Eliminate the extensive limitations on legally carrying a firearm with a WCL in a bar.

I like this too. Bars are private places. Let the owner decide.

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