'Open carry' guns don't make us safer

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It is a sad day in Georgia when churches, temples and mosques have to put signs outside their doors to prevent people from bringing guns inside.

The new “open carry” law strikes at the very foundations of civil society and the norms that hold our country together. Carrying a gun in public is itself already a threat to others, a sign that the person carrying that gun not only seeks to defend him or herself but also goes around looking for an excuse to use it. The politics of paranoia sow seeds of destruction that will harm innocent bystanders, prevent community building and increase suspicion of others.

I personally think that advocates of “open carry” have seen too many action movies where a good guy with a stubbly beard saves the day by brandishing a high-powered weapon. In this typical American fantasy, guns restore order and right wrongs in a black-and-white moral universe. The costs to innocent life are left out of this fantasy, as are the tacit and explicit racism and misogyny of gun culture. As a truncated version of the Second Amendment is held up as an idol to be worshipped, lives are lost every day in the streets, and, increasingly, in schools and shopping malls.

Too many politicians, cowed by the National Rifle Association, apparently will do nothing to stem the tide of guns flowing into our country, and will eschew even the most commonsense regulations that would keep guns away from those who would use them to terrorize innocent children and hapless bystanders.

The new law seems to go one step further, actively encouraging almost anyone to carry a gun almost anywhere. Since our politicians have abdicated their responsibility, now ordinary citizens must speak out against this insane gun culture before even more atrocities happen in the name of personal liberty.

To gun enthusiasts who may be reading this letter, please leave your guns at home and make sure that you have secured them properly. By doing this, you may save your own life or the lives of your loved ones. Think long and hard about your hero fantasies before you get involved in a situation beyond your control.

Guns don’t make us safer. Bonds of friendship, citizenship and kindness do. To have a more peaceful society, we must live that peace every day in all that we do.

David Dillard-Wright

Augusta

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Riverman1
87034
Points
Riverman1 08/03/14 - 04:24 am
15
4
Do Away With Free Speech Too

Maybe people shouldn't speak in public either in order not to antagonize others. Definitely any mention of religion should be outlawed. Controversial editorials and letters should not be allowed in newspapers either. Who cares what the Constitution says, we can't frighten people.

myfather15
55764
Points
myfather15 08/03/14 - 07:30 am
12
3
Really?

"As a truncated version of the Second Amendment is held up as an idol to be worshipped, lives are lost every day in the streets, and, increasingly, in schools and shopping malls."

Yes, mostly in the streets of Chicago and D.C. where guns are illegal!! Schools and shopping malls??? Another example of locations where historically it's been illegal to carry firearms for years!! How is that working out, Mr. Wright??

A madman, planning a mass shooting is really going to care that it's illegal to carry a firearm into the mall, right???? What about the fact it's already illegal to MURDER SOMEONE??

"and will eschew even the most commonsense regulations that would keep guns away from those who would use them to terrorize innocent children and hapless bystanders."

I can assure you Mr. Wright; there is no common sense coming from YOU today!!

"To gun enthusiasts who may be reading this letter, please leave your guns at home and make sure that you have secured them properly."

No thanks; I'll be carrying mine!! And by doing so, if you and I are in a mall where an active shooter comes in, YOU will be defenseless, running for your life; and dependent on WAITING for LE to arrive; as I will be defending myself!! No illusions of heroism, just common sense of wanting to defend myself and other's around me!! That's what I do for a living and it's what I think of when I'm out and about!! Mr. Wright, you might want to look up incidents where shooters WERE INDEED stopped by armed citizens or off duty LE officers who were carrying; and no citizens were harmed; there have been many!!

"Guns don’t make us safer. Bonds of friendship, citizenship and kindness do."

I know it's not funny, but It literally makes me laugh when I think of you saying this to the likes of Adam Lanza or James Holmes!!

"Come on friend, don't shoot at us.....we need to form a bond of friendship and kindness. There's no reason for such hatred in the world. Why do you feel the need to carry such firepower?"

You wouldn't finish the sentence, and all you'd hear is loud bangs followed by a thud; then more loud bangs as he continued shooting at others!!

So, you can live in your little fantasy world where evil doesn't exist and you believe you can talk anyone down with kindness!! Me? I'll live in the REAL WORLD, where many people are just down right mean!! Where women are stalked, raped and murdered for power, control and sexual pleasure!! Where grown men are molesting children every single day; where people who can't adjust to society, decide to kill those who do!!

I promise you, until Christ's return I will always be carrying my gun!! When He returns, I will gladly give up EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM!!

carcraft
27123
Points
carcraft 08/03/14 - 06:50 am
12
2
I guess this is the reason

I guess this is the reason all the mass shootings occurs at gun shows!

seenitB4
90980
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seenitB4 08/03/14 - 07:16 am
8
3
Fantasy world thinking here

I happen to like my gun....we are good friends!

myfather15
55764
Points
myfather15 08/03/14 - 07:19 am
9
3
carcraft

Yes, and all those "Country folk" who live in rurals areas with relaxed gun laws, and are armed to the teeth are just shooting it out in in the streets daily, right?

hoptoad
14017
Points
hoptoad 08/03/14 - 07:20 am
10
2
Because of the horrendous

Because of the horrendous acts of some loons, it is a shame that churches, synagogues and mosques have to worry about a mass shooting taking place there. Requesting guns not be brought into these places of worship sadly is that there are nut cases who will take advantage of these very places knowing no one has the means to defend themselves.

On the other hand, I am not exactly sure guns should be allowed in bars. Alcohol causes arguments at times and guns just don't mix well with booze. If someone who drank too much would use his fists to prove a point, he more than likely will use a weapon.

Sweet talking doesn't work in cases of life and death - guns do.

jimmymac
42949
Points
jimmymac 08/03/14 - 07:22 am
0
0
LETTER
Unpublished

It's obvious the letter writer would like to see a society where only scofflaws have guns rather than decent folks who'll obey the law. It's been said so many times before but apparently the letter writer has ignored it. The thugs breaking the law will never obey the law. It will only stop the law abiding. If it makes the letter writer happy he should stay gun free but I'll have mine just in case I need it.

myfather15
55764
Points
myfather15 08/03/14 - 07:27 am
8
3
Even some of my fellow LE

Even some of my fellow LE officer's are experiencing a little anxiety over this law; saying their worried about how many people are going to be carrying now!!

I tell them to calm down!! Those who are carrying because of this new law, are NOT the ones to worry about!! Those we should worry about, were already illegally carrying long before this new law came in!! Watch and see; this law is NOT going to create more problems and very likely will prevent problems!!

But, as with everything else; it's also about how the MEDIA spins the issue!! If the media tries to connect every shooting, with the new gun laws; there will be negative feelings about the law.

Just like with the media's coverage of Israel's defense against Hamas!! I was actually watching CNN about these recent airstrikes yesterday and they just HAD to report that several of the airstrikes were "NEAR" UN schools!! Notice they didn't report the airstrikes actually hit the schools, but landed NEAR the schools!!

If there is a shooting tomorrow, next week and next month; and the media attempts to connect them all with the new carry laws; it could have a negative impact on the law!!

My guess is, with the lamestream media; every time there is a shooting they're going to as least MENTION the new carry laws in Georgia!! Watch and see!!

historylover
11292
Points
historylover 08/03/14 - 07:33 am
3
1
Hoptoad

Very good comment. I actually discussed this with someone else online. I truly thought the original "carry law" in Georgia included a clause about not being served alcohol when you were open carrying. If you go to the website where you can read legislation that passes, you will find where this part was marked through. That scares me. I don't have a problem with people owning guns and using them if necessary. I do have a problem with a bunch of drunks in bars having them easily accessible. No public drinking for me, at least in Georgia!

myfather15
55764
Points
myfather15 08/03/14 - 07:38 am
10
0
hoptoad

I'm with you on the bar situation!! 18 years of experience in LE, tells me that alcohol and guns; should never be together!! Now, there is always the question of whether a person should carry in a bar, if THEY are not consuming any alcohol. Should they be able to defend themselves? Sure, but it's a legitimate debate whether guns should be there period!! As far as Churches? I completely agree that it should be up to the individual Church as to whether the person is allowed to carry there.

If a Church or ANY business doesn't want firearms in their building; and they see someone carrying inside, they can call us and we will remove the person from the property. If they refuse to leave, they can be arrested for criminal trespass. Businesses and Churches have the right to refuse carrying in their buildings.

deestafford
28762
Points
deestafford 08/03/14 - 07:51 am
7
1
If there were a book with phrases...

If there were a book with phrases in it, when one found the phrase "Ignorance on parade" one would find a picture of the letter writer as an example.

I carry everywhere and I never go, "around looking for an excuse to use it".

How many crimes or illegal shootings have you read about where the law breaker had a Concealed Weapons Permit? How many tens of thousands of times do FBI and other law enforcement data bases show incidents of lives and or property being saved by a person with a CWP?

nocnoc
45088
Points
nocnoc 08/03/14 - 08:22 am
8
2
OPEN Carry?

Or is the writers knowledge of the laws and proper terms limited?
If it is concealed what is the problem, You don't see it.

Is every Liberal walking around looking asking is that a pistol in your pocket?☺

NOTE:
Maybe the Anti-Constitutionalists should bone up on some FBI facts and learn that States and Cities with the STRICTEST FIREARM LAWS, also tend to have the HIGHER crime and shooting rates vs 2nd Amendment Constitutional based states.

BTW: OPEN CARRY IN GA
Q: Can I carry a handgun openly, without concealing it?

A: No! Georgia is one of the minority of states that requires a Georgia Weapons License to carry a handgun openly outside of your home, car, or place of business. However, any person with a valid hunting or fishing license on his or her person, or any person not required by law to have a hunting or fishing license, who is engaged in legal hunting, fishing, or sport shooting when the person has the permission of the owner of the land on which the activities are being conducted may have or carry on his or her person a handgun or long gun without a valid weapons carry license while hunting, fishing, or engaging in sport shooting.

Please be sure to read the history of Georgia’s licensing law and find out why a license is required to carry a handgun openly. It is not what you think.

Q: Do I need to carry my firearm concealed or may I carry openly?
A: Under the law, a Georgia Weapons License holder may carry a weapon or longgun openly or concealed in any location that is not off limits. However, should you choose to openly carry a handgun, please be aware of the image you present to the public while doing so.

seenitB4
90980
Points
seenitB4 08/03/14 - 08:14 am
7
1
Finger gun

David can use his finger under his shirt & I will use my gun...fair enough!

Riverman1
87034
Points
Riverman1 08/03/14 - 09:23 am
3
2
Bar Behavior Will Improve

The behavior in some bars may improve drastically if a few patrons are openly carrying. I see nothing wrong with carrying in bars or any place where there is alcohol.

Riverman1
87034
Points
Riverman1 08/03/14 - 09:29 am
3
0
Noc Educate Us

So do you need a permit to openly carry? It appears that's what the law you quoted says. I see guys openly carrying in side holsters all the time. They need permits?

billcass
806
Points
billcass 08/03/14 - 10:02 am
7
2
Recent visit to restaurant

I was in a restaurant recently. Guy in the booth next to me had a sidearm holstered. I have never felt safer.

zippy
250
Points
zippy 08/03/14 - 10:07 am
7
1
How many innocent lives have

How many innocent lives have been lost where a bystander or victim to an assault has returned fire? I cannot recall even one. The only time an innocent life is taken by gunfire is when the criminal shoot someonle else and no one present is armed to defend themselves or others. Usually once resistance is provided by police or an innocent bystander who is armed the criminal will either shoot himself or attempt to escape. I think it is the author of this letter who has been watching too much tv or movies and is basing his opinion on fantasy.

majstoll
6
Points
majstoll 08/03/14 - 10:53 am
4
0
Open carry is the Second Amendment

Mr. Wright's opinion that "The new 'open carry' law strikes at the very foundations of civil society and the norms that hold our country together. Carrying a gun in public is itself already a threat to others . . ." is out of touch with our current constitutional and social norms in the United States. Gun carry is legal in every state, and the Supreme Court has held that the Second Amendment provides "the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation." Moreover, Wright further fans the fiction that Georgia's recent gun law changes are radical - in fact, Georgia remains one of the most restrictive states in the USA when it comes to open carry - after all, Georgia still requires a permit to pen carry - most states do not. Learn more at OpenCarry.org. And carry on!

nocnoc
45088
Points
nocnoc 08/03/14 - 12:02 pm
3
1
With the Laws recently changed I have had to do some reading

Rifles appear to be now included or not included depending on which section of the law you read?

But, according to what I am reading any hunting permit allows a person to carry a Long Guns without CWP.

??????STRANGE to say the least???????

Part B seems to SAY OPEN CARRY w/o permit IS OK?

But other parts seem to say permit required?

------------------

THE LAW ON THE BOOKS JULY 2014

O.C.G.A. § 16-11-126
Having or carrying handguns, long guns, or other weapons; license requirement; exceptions for homes, motor vehicles, and other locations and conditions; penalties for violations

(a) Any person who is not prohibited by law from possessing a handgun or long gun may have or carry on his or her person a weapon or long gun on his or her property or inside his or her home, motor vehicle, or place of business without a valid weapons carry license.

(b) Any person who is not prohibited by law from possessing a handgun or long gun may have or carry on his or her person a long gun without a valid weapons carry license, provided that if the long gun is loaded, it shall only be carried in an open and fully exposed manner.

(c) Any person who is not prohibited by law from possessing a handgun or long gun may have or carry any handgun provided that it is enclosed in a case and unloaded.

So you open carry in a gun case?

(d) Any person who is not prohibited by law from possessing a handgun or long gun who is eligible for a weapons carry license may transport a handgun or long gun in any private passenger motor vehicle; provided, however, that private property owners or persons in legal control of property through a lease, rental agreement, licensing agreement, contract, or any other agreement to control access to such property shall have the right to forbid possession of a weapon or long gun on their property, except as provided in Code Section 16-11-135.

(e) Any person licensed to carry a handgun or weapon in any other state whose laws recognize and give effect to a license issued pursuant to this part shall be authorized to carry a weapon in this state, but only while the licensee is not a resident of this state; provided, however, that such licensee shall carry the weapon in compliance with the laws of this state.

(f) Any person with a valid hunting or fishing license on his or her person, or any person not required by law to have a hunting or fishing license, who is engaged in legal hunting, fishing, or sport shooting when the person has the permission of the owner of the land on which the activities are being conducted may have or carry on his or her person a handgun or long gun without a valid weapons carry license while hunting, fishing, or engaging in sport shooting.

(g) Notwithstanding Code Sections 12-3-10, 27-3-1.1, 27-3-6, and 16-12-122 through 16-12-127, any person with a valid weapons carry license may carry a weapon in all parks, historic sites, or recreational areas, as such term is defined in Code Section 12-3-10, including all publicly owned buildings located in such parks, historic sites, and recreational areas, in wildlife management areas, and on public transportation; provided, however, that a person shall not carry a handgun into a place where it is prohibited by federal law.

(h) (1) No person shall carry a weapon without a valid weapons carry license unless he or she meets one of the exceptions to having such license as provided in subsections (a) through (g) of this Code section.

(2) A person commits the offense of carrying a weapon without a license when he or she violates the provisions of paragraph (1) of this subsection.

(i) Upon conviction of the offense of carrying a weapon without a valid weapons carry license, a person shall be punished as follows:

(1) For the first offense, he or she shall be guilty of a misdemeanor; and

(2) For the second offense within five years, as measured from the dates of previous arrests for which convictions were obtained to the date of the current arrest for which a conviction is obtained, and for any subsequent offense, he or she shall be guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, shall be imprisoned for not less than two years and not more than five years.

Darby
26972
Points
Darby 08/03/14 - 12:14 pm
7
0
"Guns don’t make us safer. Bonds of

friendship, citizenship and kindness do."

.
And now let's all gather 'round for a couple of choruses of Kumbaya. When the guy with the gun or knife is about to do you in, that ALWAYS helps!

...........................................................................................................

I'll take my guns anytime. They help make friendship, (citizenship????) and kindness achievable.

Angela H
6038
Points
Angela H 08/03/14 - 12:12 pm
5
0
I wish my state allowed open

I wish my state allowed open carry, and here is why. (which proves the statement about looking for trouble to be false.) I have no desire to shoot anyone, but my state requires me to carry my weapon concealed. No....imagine you are going to attack someone...will it be the weak looking young woman who is just carrying a purse, or will you attack the one with a pistol on her hip. Carrying openly helps eliminate the need to actually use the weapon. "Speak softly and carry a big stick."

Darby
26972
Points
Darby 08/03/14 - 12:52 pm
5
0
If you see me on the street....

in a theater, in Wal-Mart or even in my yard raking leaves.... be assured that you are viewing a man WITH a weapon.

On the other hand, knowing how nervous some people are, and in deference to them, I have no desire to "open" carry.

Having said that, I'm curious. Am I to understand that Georgia now ALLOWS open carry? I will admit that I haven't read the new law.

Somebody out there want to educate me?

hoptoad
14017
Points
hoptoad 08/03/14 - 02:37 pm
4
0
I also have a CWP and usually

I also have a CWP and usually have a handgun on my person. Like Darby though, I don't open carry as I don't want people getting nervous or want to give anyone any idea of trying to take it off me while I have my hands full of groceries.

corgimom
34215
Points
corgimom 08/03/14 - 06:36 pm
0
4
There used to be, years ago,

There used to be, years ago, a man who would walk up and down Broad St with a gun in a holster. Everybody stayed far, far away from him.

However, all it takes is a criminal with a gun to shoot you first and then you're down, and all the weapons in the world won't help you.

The gangbangers don't care if people are armed. They know that they have the element of surprise, an attacker always does. In fact, that gives them more reason to kill you, if they know you are carrying, they know that they will get a gun out of the deal.

And nobody has eyes in the back of their head- what's to stop someone from shooting you from behind?

People watch too much tv and movies- an attack happens in seconds, and by the time the victim knows it's happening, it's too late. It's not like you see on tv.

corgimom
34215
Points
corgimom 08/03/14 - 06:42 pm
0
3
How do you know that the

How do you know that the people carrying guns aren't criminals or mentally ill?

Billcass, you felt safer? What if that other diner was drunk or violent?

People like to project onto others their positive qualities. Because they are responsible people, they think that other people are, too.

And that's just not always the case.

If you feel the need to go to a restaurant wearing a gun, you need to find a safer place to eat.

People are so concerned about the bushy-haired stranger doing a shooting- they are in far more danger driving down I-20 than they are of being shot by a mass murderer. That's where you are far more likely to be injured or killed, but people do that everyday with no fear.

While myfather is different- he's a trained, professional LEO- it scares me to death that some stranger has a gun and wants to be a hero.

RMSHEFF
16707
Points
RMSHEFF 08/03/14 - 07:31 pm
3
0
corgimom

I am not sure where you get your statistics from but the opposite is true. Criminals don't even want the possibility of someone shooting back. That is why they never attack someone at a gun show. They know what the outcome will be. Criminals LIKE easy unarmed victims. Thankfully most thugs are not to bright and usually end up shooting each other.

burninater
9685
Points
burninater 08/03/14 - 07:44 pm
0
3
"How many innocent lives have

"How many innocent lives have been lost where a bystander or victim to an assault has returned fire? I cannot recall even one. The only time an innocent life is taken by gunfire is when the criminal shoot someonle else and no one present is armed to defend themselves or others."
--------
zippy, 27 armed and trained police officers have been shot and killed in the line of duty this year alone.

It is simply not true that the presence of someone armed to defend themselves or others guarantees personal safety, or the safety of others.

Closer to home, a man was shot and killed in this exact scenario in a Waffle House parking lot this summer. For another example, only one bystander was killed in the murder/suicide attack on police officers in Las Vegas this year. That one murdered bystander was the only civilian who attempted to interrupt the crime with their personal sidearm.

There may be a number of reasons why Americans can carry, not the least of which is the Second Amendment.

But a guarantee of personal safety is demonstrably not one of those reasons.

burninater
9685
Points
burninater 08/03/14 - 08:42 pm
0
3
How so, Gage? A man was

How so, Gage?

A man was killed, even though a bystander returned fire. Zippy could not recall a case where that happened. I presented over two dozen cases where the presence of an armed victim or bystander did not prevent a gun murder.

Those aren't "facts," they're facts .

Gage Creed
17874
Points
Gage Creed 08/03/14 - 09:16 pm
3
0
FACTS

The man killed Kevin Jordan, was a police officer shot multiple times in the back by one of three drunk scum he was removing from the Waffle House, the citizen that shot the worthless coward Michael Bowman, was the officers brother.

You are manipulating the "facts" as you are prone to do... what if Jordan's brother had not put a bullet in Bowman.. what's to say he would not have continued firing in the Waffle House or the crowd?

http://www.wsbtv.com/news/news/local/authorities-griffin-police-officer-...

Gage Creed
17874
Points
Gage Creed 08/03/14 - 09:10 pm
3
0
?

You presented 2 dozen cases? Where?

How about this one?

http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local_news/article/Breakup-sparked-thea...

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