July 1, 2014. I planned an early morning hike in the woods with the grandkids. That same morning, I read about Georgia's Guns-Everywhere law that allows anyone in Georgia to carry a gun into a church, bar, school, or library, but not into the Statehouse where the politicians who wrote the legislation do their "work."
I wondered why Guns Everywhere didn't include the Georgia Statehouse since the legislation (parading as the Safe Carry Protections Act) was enacted allegedly to increase safety.
The law also specifies that a police officer may not stop a person from carrying a gun into a church, bar, school library, etc., or even ask anyone to show his license to carry it.
I was determined not to let the obscenity of Guns Everywhere ruin my day. I would enjoy hiking with my grandchildren no matter what. So at 5:30 a.m., when my energy was high, and the air was particularly crisp and the forest full of song, I picked up the children.
We were hiking for about half an hour when I noticed a strange man coming towards us. What was that he was carrying? Was it a rifle of some kind? It looked unmistakably like a gun – a rifle or a shotgun.
But this was conservation land – in Massachusetts not Georgia! Even if he had a gun, I had no reason to worry... or did I? If he had a gun, it probably wasn't loaded, and he was on his way to a target range. Through a conservation area???
When he got close enough, I realized that he wasn't carrying a gun, but a tripod in a carrying case. He was a nature photographer. He took pictures of living things instead of killing them. I thanked my lucky stars that I lived in a place where I could go for a very long walk with two small children, and not ever see a single person with a gun.
I went home and did some research. According to the latest US census, Georgia has one of the highest poverty rates in America. It is in the bottom quartile when it comes to graduating students from high school, and is very low in achievement in higher education. It is also in the worst quartile when it comes to cigarette use, obesity and teen pregnancy.
Notably it was already one of the most dangerous states in the nation even before Guns Everywhere was passed – 9th highest in firearm homicide deaths in the nation (Louisiana gets the top award for most dangerous state, an honor they do not plan to give up. Goons there, envious of Georgia's new law, recently approved their own version of Guns Everywhere, but it is not yet law).
If anyone can carry submachine guns into churches, schools, libraries, and bars (and designated government buildings) shouldn't they also be allowed to take them into the Georgia State House where the goons who created Guns Everywhere do their work? What the hell, a so-called Second-Amendment right is a Second-Amendment right, isn't it? Or is it not?
Copyright 2014 James and Jean Anton.
Their latest illustrated book, Santa Is Make-Believe, Isn't He?, will be published by www.muse-press.org later this year.