GCO wrote a response to the AJC editorial that attacked GCO as having a “dangerous agenda.” The AJC editors did not see fit, however, to print the response from an organization it attacked. The response can be viewed here:
Archive for the 'Kennesaw Preemption' Category
Randy Vaughn, of Jonesboro, Georgia, had his short letter to the editor published in today’s AJC, calling Maureen Downey to task for her inapt comparison of Georgia firearms license holders to gang members in a shootout.
Gun in parks: Law-abiding citizens aren’t out to harm others
The editorial “Guns, parks don’t mix”, (@issue Aug. 23) fails to recognize the distinction between law-abiding citizens and criminals. It’s as clear as the difference between law-abiding, legally licensed drivers, and drunken drivers. Perhaps automobiles should be banned from areas where children and families are present.
RANDY VAUGHN, Jonesboro
Thanks, Randy! You can see Maureen Downey’s editorial here.
GCO wishes to thank the NRA, which has graciously allowed us to make available Cam Edward’s interview with John Monroe from yesterday evening relating to Kennesaw, Georgia’s recent repeal of its illegal gun ban ordinance. Please listen and enjoy.
GCO member Ben Bryant is a former Army Ranger and DeKalb County businessman who published an editorial today in the AJC that cogently states why Georgians should not be denied the right to keep and bear arms while visiting local parks. Thanks, Ben!
So starts the editorial by Maureen Downey on the AJC editorial page today. The editorial frankly admits that children have died in local parks to criminal violence in spite of local gun bans, but she calls on local governments not only to continue their useless bans in violation of state law, but to fight GCO with litigation. GCO wonders whether she will pick up their legal expenses for fighting a clear state preemption law. GCO also wonders whether she would urge local governments to fight against other civil rights.
In a hysterical news broadcast, Atlanta’s CBS affiliate warned that the sounds of innocent children in Kennesaw parks will be replaced by the sounds of gunfire. GCO Vice President John Monroe set the record straight, reminding the audience that a local park gun ban has already cost the life of a mother and toddler.
The broadcast is available here.
Thanks to John Monroe for being the voice of reason. One would almost think people did not know that Kennesaw’s short-lived gun ban was actually a very rare example. There are very few of these types of local bans in place in Georgia, and yet Georgia firearms license holders are not committing crimes in parks around the state.
So reads the title of this article in the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Although the city repealed its gun ban, the mayor is promising to ask the General Assembly to expressly permit a confusing patchwork quilt of local ordinances.
Church said the Kennesaw City Council felt it had no choice but to rescind its ban on firearms in parks, but will now pressure its representatives in the General Assembly to change the law.
“We passed an ordinance banning firearms, and the state in its infinite wisdom passed a law saying people can have guns in parks and endanger our kids,” Church said. “We are going to challenge that. We think we ought to have the right to protect our kids and our citizenry.”
GCO will be vigilant in watching for any such effort at permitting more gun bans in the 2008 session, of course.
When one remembers the Whitney and Jordan Land murder case, it is readily apparent to any objective observer that barring peaceable citizens from possessing arms in local parks is not the right solution to protect our families. Perhaps ignorant of how local park gun bans have already effected real families, Mayor Church claims GCO is on the wrong side of this vital issue.
Church said GeorgiaCarry.org is a group “that doesn’t have anything better to do than to endanger our kids” in Kennesaw and other cities.
Mayor Church offers no solution for keeping criminals out of Kennesaw parks. GCO is sure he is well aware that only the law abiding will be affected by a local ordinance banning guns. It is already a crime to carry a firearm anywhere outside of one’s home, car, or place of business without a firearms license, and this law includes local parks. But Mayor Church makes the disingenuous claim that Kennesaw has made it legal again for “practically anyone” to carry guns in city parks.
Mayor Church ought to know better.
UPDATE: Mayor Church’s comment about GCO not having anything better to do than endanger kids has subsequently been edited out of the article.
GCO’s effort in Kennesaw was reported in the August 10, 2007 cover page of the Cobb section of the Marietta Daily Journal. The article is in the 14 day archives but will soon disappear! If you can get a chance to read it before it disappears, it is a very thorough examination of the issues involved. From the article:
Kennesaw Mayor Leonard Church said Bentley advised the council on action regarding the ordinance at its Aug. 1 work session.
He said the city has started the process to repeal and adopt a revised ordinance, including scheduling the necessary public hearings.
“We can’t supersede the state law,” Church said. “The state decided it was OK to carry a gun in (public) parks. “
The AJC ran an article on August 10, 2007 mentioning GCO’s effort to have Kennesaw’s preempted gun ban repealed. Prominent in the article is the city attorney’s strong recommendation that Kennesaw repeal its ordinance, stating that ”the state law says no city or county may pass an ordinance with respect to guns in public places.” GCO agrees.
The article also contains quotes from two of GCO’s officers.