Georgia lawmakers have struck a huge blow for the Second Amendment.
Before adjourning from its 2022 session on Tuesday, the state’s General Assembly passed a bill recognizing the constitutional right to carry a firearm without a permit. It’ll become law when Gov. Brian Kemp signs it, as he’s promised to do.
“I look forward to signing the Georgia Constitutional Carry Act of 2021 into law soon and fulfilling another promise I made to the voters of this state,” Kemp, a Republican, wrote in a Twitter post last week.
I look forward to signing the Georgia Constitutional Carry Act of 2021 into law soon and fulfilling another promise I made to the voters of this state. https://t.co/MmIPrR6uw5
— Governor Brian P. Kemp (@GovKemp) April 1, 2022
The state joins Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia and Wyoming.
“A movement long championed by the NRA, constitutional carry eliminates the need for government permission before a law-abiding individual can exercise their right to bear arms,” the NRA-ILA said in a statement.
(Here at The Western Journal, we too champion the right to bear arms — and believe the Constitution’s words “shall not be infringed” mean just that. We’ll keep fighting for your God-given constitutional right. You can help us bring the fight to America by subscribing.)
“The NRA paved the way for constitutional carry by first leading the charge for right-to-carry nearly 40 years ago,” NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre said in a news release after the Georgia lawmakers voted on Friday.
“Today, every state, and the District of Columbia, provides for the carrying of a firearm for self-defense outside the home in some form, and half the nation recognizes the Second Amendment protects law-abiding citizens’ right to self-defense as an inherent and inalienable right,” he added.
“NRA members have led this extraordinary brick-by-brick effort in building and expanding America’s self-defense laws and we are not done!”
Georgia is now a swing state, however — and Democrats have taken aim at Kemp and the Republican-controlled legislature over the bill, which Democratic gubernatorial candidate (and notorious sore loser) Stacey Abrams has taken to calling “criminal carry.”
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the first TV ad run by the Democratic Party of Georgia in the 2022 election cycle shows a former patrol officer outside of a school. “Brian Kemp may talk tough, but he’d make us less safe. Because the last place we need more criminals with guns is here,” he says.
No permit. No background check.
70% of Georgians oppose it and law enforcement has major concerns.
But @BrianKempGA plans to sign a dangerous “criminal carry” bill into law that weakens public safety by making it easier for criminals to carry hidden, loaded guns in public. pic.twitter.com/NYoDn3M1qX
— Georgia Democrats (@GeorgiaDemocrat) April 5, 2022
However, behind this fear-mongering is a truth the Democrats aren’t going to mutter: Nothing is currently stopping an individual from carrying a gun onto school property as it is. It may not be legal, but that generally doesn’t concern criminals, particularly ones targeting a school. They’re looking at far worse charges than illegal carry of a firearm.
According to WMAZ-TV in Macon, Georgia, state law currently requires residents to get a license to carry a firearm, which includes a background check and a fee of up to $75.
Constitutional carry simply states that law-abiding citizens don’t need the government’s permission to exercise their constitutional rights. That’s it. Its effect on the criminal element is negligible — because those who don’t intend to abide by the law don’t care if they get the government’s permission or not. The numbers bear this out.
It’s taken a while for half the states in country to recognize this fact — almost 20 years since the first state passed a constitutional carry bill, the NRA-ILA noted.
“In 2003, NRA helped to pass constitutional carry legislation in Alaska,” the group noted in the Friday news release.
“Seven years later Arizona joined the fold, followed by Wyoming, Kansas, and Maine. Ten additional states passed similar legislation by 2019. And in the last two years, nine states have become constitutional carry states. With Georgia’s vote today, half of America provides law-abiding gun owners with the ability to carry without a permit from the state.”
“This is a monumental moment for the Second Amendment, NRA members and gun owners nationwide,” Jason Ouimet, executive director of the NRA-ILA, said in the Friday release.
“Half the country now rightfully recognizes the fundamental right to carry a firearm for self-defense as enshrined in our Constitution – as opposed to a government privilege that citizens must ask permission to exercise. Passing this essential legislation has been a priority for the NRA for many years, and we’re thrilled to celebrate this huge success.”
Here’s to celebrating more successes in the near future, as well.
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