In the wake of any mass shooting, any mention of gun rights is deemed to be completely and totally insensitive. Thomas Massie was blasted for his Christmas card photo because of a mass shooting in a completely different state than the one he represents, for example.
It was concerns over these accusations of insensitivity that scuttled constitutional carry in Georgia last year.
But hey, that was a year ago. Clearly, it’s not too soon now, right?
Well, not when you see a headline like, “Nearly a year after Georgia mass shootings, bill to loosen gun rules on the move.”
A Georgia Senate committee advanced legislation that would allow Georgians to carry firearms without a license after hearing testimony from gun rights and gun control activists debating the merits of legislation that’s a stated priority for top Republican officials.
Republican Sen. Jason Anavitarte’s so-called constitutional carry act passed the Senate Judiciary Committee 6-3 on a party-line vote, with Democrats denouncing the easing of restrictions on weapons and Republicans arguing for fewer gun restrictions.
Republican Gov. Brian Kemp emphasized permit-less licenses as his priority for the 2022 session in early January, and Anavitarte’s measure, first filed in 2021, has the backing of 31 Republican senators. The bill now goes before the Senate Rules Committee, which decides if the proposal will make it to the floor.
Anavitarte said Tuesday that the bill does not change any current laws that govern the purchase or ownership of firearms, including the right of private businesses and property owners to prohibit firearms on their properties.
Last year, a bill to expand gun rights faltered after a deadly shooting spree at Asian American-owned spas in Cherokee County and Atlanta shocked the nation.
But that was last year. Surely we’re past that, right?
Except that for them, there’s never a good time to bring up gun rights.
In fairness, the paragraph in the story about last year isn’t really a big deal. It is why the bill was derailed last year.
In fact, if not for the headline, I probably wouldn’t have paid all that much attention to it.
Yet the problem is that the headline is all many people will read, and it suggests that it’s somehow wrong to consider constitutional carry ever simply because there was a mass shooting somewhere in the state.
It should be remembered that the shooter in that essentially carried a firearm without a permit for a period of time before he started shooting. Georgia has permissive open carry, so walking around with a gun in pretty much any manner is criminal.
It didn’t stop him.
So whether or not constitutional carry passes in the state, there’s absolutely no way it’s going to benefit potential mass shooters because they’re not going to follow the laws in the first place. I mean, if they were, wouldn’t the laws against, oh…I don’t know…not killing people be enough to do the trick?
The fact that it’s not makes it clear that laws aren’t the answer for that particular problem.
For a bunch of other problems, passing constitutional carry is the answer.