GeorgiaCarry.Org is Georgia's No-compromise
Voice For Gun Owners.

GCO Believes...

The Second Amendment to the Bill of Rights doesn't just apply in certain locations or to special people favored by the government. The right of the people to keep and bear arms applies everywhere and to all of us without qualification. "Shall not be infringed" means SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.

Prior to July 1, 2008, the State of Georgia had many restrictions on where and how a law abiding citizen could carry a firearm. Coupled with a law so vaguely and poorly written that determining where one could legally carry was extremely difficult, many citizens never bothered to obtain a Georgia Firearm License to exercise their rights.

GeorgiaCarry.Org was incorporated on February 9, 2007 and from the beginning, we have fought against the powerful interests who seek to burden the exercise of our second amendment rights. Our first action was to sue Georgia's Probate Judges to force them to follow the law. We sued them to force them to issue license within a certain time frame as opposed to issuing them when they so desired. We also took them to court to remove their requirement of applicants to supply their Social Security numbers and employment information in order to obtain a license. Next, we took on Cities and Counties to force them to repeal their local gun bans, in violation of Georgia's Preemption Law (OCGA 16-11-173).

Working with Georgia State Senator John Douglas (R17) and State Rep. Tim Bearden (R68) in 2008, we began the process of expanding the number of places Firearms Licensees can carry, including restaurants that serve alcohol, public transit and parks. GCO filed an Amicus Brief in the Heller v. DC court case documenting the racist origins and intent of gun control.

In 2009, working with Senator Mitch Seabaugh, we took yet another step in restoring our 2A rights. In 2010, SB308, Senator Seabaugh's "Common Sense" gun bill was passed in the General Assembly and signed into law on June 6, 2010 by Governor Sonny Perdue. The signing of SB308 repealed Georgia's 140 year old Public Gathering statute, expanded the number of places a license holder could carry and expanded the number of people qualified to get a license by removing the life time prohibitions for misdemeanor marijuana possession convictions.

Much more needs to be done and GeorgiaCarry.Org will not stop until our nation's forefather's promise of "shall not be infringed" is achieved. If you share our belief that the Second Amendment doesn't have an asterisk, then join us in the fight for our Liberty.

Latest Information:

GeorgiaCarry.Org Requests Governor Kemp to Suspend OCGA 16-11-126

August 30th, 2020

As many of you already know, the Probate Courts are backlogged and are not responsive in meeting the requirements of O.C.G.A.§ 16-11-129 – Weapons carry license, temporary renewal permit; mandamus; verification of license due to the shutdown of the court system in the State of GA. This delay is unacceptable to our members and all citizens who must obtain a license to carry a firearm for self-defense.

On August 28, 2020, our Attorney, John Monroe sent the following request to Governor Kemp requesting, once again, that he suspend the enforcement of O.C.G.A.§ 16-11-126 – Having or carrying handguns, long guns, or other weapons; license requirement; exceptions for homes, motor vehicles, private property, and other locations and conditions

The letter:

John R. Monroe

John Monroe Law, P.C.

 August 28, 2020

The Honorable Brian Kemp, Governor

RE:          Second Request of GeorgiaCarry.Org, Inc. to Suspend Enforcement of O.C.G.A. § 16-11-126 During COVID-19 Emergency

Dear Gov. Kemp:

As you may recall, I wrote you in March to request that you suspend enforcement of O.C.G.A. § 16-11-126 during the state of emergency because probate judges were refusing to issue Georgia weapons carry licenses (“GWLs”).  Although you took no action at that time, you may have believed that the situation was very temporary, and no action was warranted.  While I initially had that hope as well, that has not turned out to be the case.

Although many probate judges have resumed at least nominally issuing GWLs, in practice the most populous counties, which also are the counties with the greatest levels of civil unrest, continue to be counties where GWLs are difficult or impossible to receive.

In Fulton, Clayton, Gwinnett, Cobb, DeKalb and Chatham Counties, and no doubt others, applicants must either make appointments or wait in line on a first come, first served basis.  While either option may sound plausibly reasonable, neither is working in practice.  In Fulton, where applicants must wait in line, I am told that arrival after 7:30 a.m. (which is even before the office opens) normally will result in being too late.  For those that do get in line early, they are told (after the office opens) that their wait may be five hours or more.  North Fulton residents who do not happen to live in Alpharetta or Sandy Springs must go downtown to get a GWL.  Even though they can apply at the North Annex in Sandy Springs, both police departments that do fingerprinting for GWLs (Alpharetta and Sandy Springs) refuse to do fingerprinting for non-residents of those cities.  Most applicants cannot afford to take a whole day off work in order to get a license to exercise their constitutional rights.

In other counties, it is necessary to make an appointment, but there is such a pent-up demand for GWLs that appointments are not available at all in 2020.  In some counties, all 2020 appointments were booked up weeks ago.

In short, it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to obtain a GWL in the population centers of Georgia.  You were elected by many voters because of your ostensibly strong stand in support of individual gun rights.  I implore you to create a record that reflects your campaign promises and take the simple action of suspending enforcement of O.C.G.A. § 16-11-126 until the backlog for GWL applicants has been cleared.

Thank you in advance for your consideration and your leadership during this emergency, and please contact me if you have any questions.

Sincerely,

John R. Monroe

Vice President, GeorgiaCarry.Org, Inc.

It should be noted that the Governor has previously stated that he did not have the power to suspend enforcement of O.C.G.A.§ 16-11-126 but has previously suspended enforcement of O.C.G.A.§ 16-11-38 – Wearing mask, hood, or device which conceals identity of wearer 

The letter can be viewed here.

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Clarifying Governor’s Executive Order on GWL Grace Period

July 29th, 2020

We have received numerous questions on the extension of the grace period for renewals on GWL’s and the Executive Order extending that grace period. After a call to the Governor’s Office, we have a definitive answer.

Here is the portion of the Governor’s Original EO 05.08.20.01 (Issued on May 8, 2020) that pertains to the renewal of your GWL.

IT IS ORDERED
That the requirement under Code Section 16-11-129 that renewals of weapons carry licenses and renewal licenses must be applied for within thirty (30) days after the expiration of such licenses, is hereby suspended for weapons carry licenses and renewal licenses which expire between February 13, 2020 and June 12, 2020

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED
That applications for renewals of such weapons carry licenses and renewal licenses shall be considered to be for a renewal license if the holder of such weapons carry license or renewal license applies within 120 days after the expiration date on the face of license, and that if the Public Health State of Emergency is extended, then this provision shall apply to any weapons carry license or renewal license that expires during the Public Health State of Emergency

On 06/29/2020, the Public Health State of Emergency was renewed via EC 06.29.20.01. Here is the portion of that EC that pertains to the renewal of your GWL.

IT IS ORDERED
That the Public Health State of Emergency declared by Executive Order 03.14.20,01 and renewed by Executive Orders 04.08.20.02, 04-30.20.01, and 05.28.20.01 which is set to expire on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 11:59 P.M., shall be renewed for thirty (30) days.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED
That the Public Health State of Emergency shall terminate on Tuesday, August 11, 2020, at 11:59 P.M., unless it is renewed by the Governor.

Therefore, if your license expires or expired between February 13, 2020 and on or before August 11, you have 120 days from the expiration date on your GWL to renew your license. If your license expires on August 12, and the Public Health State of Emergency is not extended, you have the normal 30-day renewal grace period from the expiration date on your GWL.

Please note that the grace period starts from the expiration date on your GWL.

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Governor Brian Kemp Declares State of Emergency

July 6th, 2020

Please note that with signing of GeorgiaCarry.Org’s sponsored House Bill 60 (HB60) into law in 2014, the Governor’s powers to prevent law-abiding citizens from exercising their right to bear arms in a declared emergency, such as this, was repealed.

However, as always, be aware of your surroundings and realize that everyone will be on high alert, especially in the areas where the looting and rioting have taken place.

The Emergency Order:

Kemp Declares State of Emergency, Authorizes 1,000 Troops to Protect Georgians

Atlanta, GA – Following weeks of dramatically increased violent crime and property destruction in the City of Atlanta, the July Fourth weekend saw over thirty Georgians wounded by gunfire, including five confirmed dead. Today Governor Kemp issued Executive Order 07.06.20.01, which declares a State of Emergency across Georgia and authorizes the activation of as many as 1,000 Georgia National Guard troops.

“Peaceful protests were hijacked by criminals with a dangerous, destructive agenda. Now, innocent Georgians are being targeted, shot, and left for dead,” said Governor Kemp. “This lawlessness must be stopped and order restored in our capital city. I have declared a State of Emergency and called up the Georgia Guard because the safety of our citizens comes first. This measure will allow troops to protect state property and dispatch state law enforcement officers to patrol our streets. Enough with the tough talk. We must protect the lives and livelihoods of all Georgians.”

The Georgia Guard will provide support at state buildings, including the Georgia State Capitol, Georgia Department of Public Safety Headquarters, and Governor’s Mansion. This aid will allow state law enforcement personnel to increase patrols on roadways and throughout communities, especially those in the City of Atlanta.

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GCO Responds to “Mayors Against Stand Your Ground”

July 1st, 2020

On June 25, 2020, the Mayors of Atlanta, Savannah, Augusta, Decatur, Norcross, Milledgeville, Waycross, Fairburn, Stockbridge and the County of Athens-Clarke sent a letter to the General Assembly stating their opposition to Georgia’s Stand Your Ground laws.

Our Attorney, John Monroe responded by writing a letter on July 1, 2020, to the General Assembly on behalf of GeorgiaCarry.Org correcting their errors, misnomers and omissions.  Below is the text of John’s letter with a link to the letter at the bottom of the post.

John R. Monroe

John Monroe Law, P.C.

July 1, 2020

Members of the General Assembly of Georgia

RE:  Certain Mayor’s Request to Repeal “Stand Your Ground Law”

Dear Members of the General Assembly of Georgia:

I am writing you 0n behalf of my client, GeorgiaCarry.Org, Inc. and in response to a June 25, 2020, letter sent to you by 10 mayors of Georgia cities (the “Mayors”). The Mayors’ letter is flawed in several respects and is based on a fundamental misunderstand of history.  I write, therefore, to point out those errors.

The Mayor’s letter concerns whether there is, or ought to be, a duty to retreat when confronted with a violent attack.  When there is no duty to retreat, that situation is sometimes colloquially called “stand your ground.”

The Mayors seem to believe, incorrectly, that the lack of a duty to retreat is a recent feature of Georgia law.  They are wrong.  They use phrases like “upend centuries of traditional self-defense doctrine”, “increases in firearms homicide”, and “restore normalcy.”  These phrases all imply a belief that a duty to retreat historically existed and the lack of a duty to retreat is a recent invention.  That simply is not the case.

In 1532, an act was passed in England to permit killing robbers and burglars.  24 Hen. Vlll, c5 (Killing a Thief Act of 1532).  Previous to that, killing in self-defense was something that required a pardon from the King, on the theory that only the crown had the power to use force against a subject.  The Killing a Thief Act thus created a new concept, that a subject who killed a robber or burglar was acting with permission of the king.

In 1765, Blackstone wrote the Commentaries on the Laws of England, which came to be viewed as the definitive source for the law at the time of the founding of our own nation.  In Commentaries, Blackstone wrote that killing to stop a forcible felony was “justifiable.” meaning the killer should be acquitted of all liability. On the other hand, killilng during a “sudden affray,” or mutual combat, was only “excusable,” meaning the killer still had criminal liability, but to a lesser extent (i.e., manslaughter and not murder).  But the killing could be justifiable, and not just excusable, if the killer could not escape the affray. Thus was born the concept of a duty to retreat, but it only applied when the killer was culpable in starting the fight in the first place.  It had no application to the justifiable killing of a burglar or robber.

In 1784, Georgia adopted the common law of England as it existed on May 14, 1776.  Act of 1784 (Cobb’s Digest, p. 721).  So, Georgia had the common law of England prior to its founding and continued with it after it became a state.  It is simply wrong to imply that the lack of a duty to retreat is a novel concept for Georgia.  Indeed, repealing that concept would “upend centuries of self-defense doctrine.”

The lack of a duty to retreat is codified at O.C.G.A.§ 16-3-23.1, and that Code section was enacted in 2006 (2006 Ga. L.477, § 1.)  As early as 1898, the Supreme Court of Georgia found there was no duty to retreat before employing force to repel and attack.  Glover v. State, 105 Ga. 597, 31 E.E. 584 (Ga. 1898). That was based on the Court’s reading of the Penal Code then in effect.  The Glover court observed the distinction between an unprovoked attack and a sudden affray.  In 1984, the Supreme Court of Georgia observed, “The position of the court in Glover is in line with the majority view in this country…..”  Johnson v. State, 253 Ga. 37, 315 S.E. 2d 871 (Ga. 1984).

The Mayors also claim, “At least 30 people are killed each month as a result of Stand Your Ground laws.”  They do not cite any support for this statistic, and logically there cannot be any.  If there is no duty to retreat, then the state cannot argue that the defendant did not retreat (such and argument would taint the jury.)  The state cannot introduce evidence of a failure to retreat, and the defense does not have a reason to introduce evidence of a lock of opportunity to retreat.  In short, in a state with a lick of duty to retreat, there never should be any discussion of a duty to retreat. There cannot, therefore, be statistics on how often a self-defense killing would not have been justified if there had been a duty to retreat.

The Mayors claim, again incorrectly, “There are no studies that associate broadening self-defense laws with deterring a crime.”  In fact, there is an extensive study that comes to that conclusion.  More Guns, Less Crime, Lott, John R., Jr.,  University of Chicago Press, 3rd ed. (1998).

In summary, the major premise of the Mayors’ letter is flawed, and other claims they make in their letter are demonstrably false.  I urge you to disregard the Mayor’s letter.

Sincerely,

John R. Monroe

156 Robert Jones Road           Dawsonville, GA  30534

John’s letter can be found here.

The Mayors letter can be found here.

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Wearing Masks and Carrying Guns in Public in Georgia

July 1st, 2020

We at GeorgiaCarry.Org have had numerous inquiries on the legality of carrying a firearm while wearing a mask in public in Georgia.  The short answer is that it is not illegal to carry a firearm while wearing a mask.  Under normal circumstances, other than this declared health emergency, it is illegal simply to wear a mask to hide one’s identity.

In 1951, Georgia enacted Code Section O.C.G.A.§ 16-11-38 – Wearing mask, hood, or device which conceals identity of wearer.  This bill was passed to prohibit KKK members from wearing masks in public.

O.C.G.A.§ 16-11-38 states:

“A person is guilty of a misdemeanor when he wears a mask, hood, or device by which any portion of the face is so hidden, concealed, or covered as to conceal the identity of the wearer and is upon any public way or public property or upon the private property of another without the written permission of the owner or occupier of the property to do so.”

It further states:

“This Code section shall not apply to:

(1) A person wearing a traditional holiday costume on the occasion of the holiday;

(2) A person lawfully engaged in trade and employment or in a sporting activity where a mask is worn for the purpose of ensuring the physical safety of the wearer, or because of the nature of the occupation, trade, or profession, or sporting activity;

(3) A person using a mask in a theatrical production including use in Mardi gras celebrations and masquerade balls; or

(4) A person wearing a gas mask prescribed in emergency management drills and exercises or emergencies.

There is no mention of a firearm in this statute as the law is aimed at persons who wear masks in public to hide their identity.

This bill was passed in 1951 to prohibit KKK members from covering their faces when wearing their regalia.

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, through his Executive Order 04.13.20.02 ordered that this Code Section not be enforced on anyone “if that person is wearing such device for the purpose of complying with the guidance of any healthcare agency or to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

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GCO Member Prevails in Court of Appeals Against Chatham County Probate Judge

June 22nd, 2020

On June 22, 2020, the Court of Appeals of Georgia agreed with GCO member Greg Hise that Chatham County Probate Judge Thomas Bordeaux should have granted a GWL to Hise. Hise applied for a GWL in 2019 and Bordeaux denied it the same day. Hise sued in the Superior Court of Chatham County and won a writ of mandamus, ordering Bordeaux to issue Hise a GWL. Bordeaux refused to obey the Superior Court, so Hise filed a motion to have Bordeaux found in contempt. Bordeaux appealed, saying Hise was required to seek a hearing before Bordeaux before suing in mandamus. The Court of Appeals disagreed, saying Hise followed the correct procedure and is entitled to a GWL. The Court of Appeals’ opinion may be found here.

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Mullis Announces Plans to Sponsor Gun Bill

June 2nd, 2020
GeorgiaCarry.Org endorsed candidate for State Senate District 53, Sen. Jeff Mullis (R-Chickamauga) has announced plans to sponsor a strong pro-Second Amendment bill with the help of GCO.  Senator Mullis acknowledged that it has been several years since the legislature passed a gun bill and he expressed his desires to sponsor one.  He has indicated that he will ask GCO to help draft the legislation and advise him on the most pressing needs for Georgians’ rights to keep and bear arms.
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GeorgiaCarry.Org Endorsements for June 9, 2020 Primary Election

May 30th, 2020
GeorgiaCarry.Org has endorsed the following candidates for the June 9 Primary:
State Senate Seats:
State Senate District 20 – Michael Caldwell
State Senate District 50 – Stacy Hall
State Senate District 53 – Jeff Mullis
State House Seats:
State Representative District 11 – Rick Jasperse
State Representative District 20 – Charlice Byrd
State Representative District 149 – Chris Steverson
US Representative District 14 – Kevin Cooke
Probate Court Judge Fulton County – Kenya Johnson
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SOME Probate Courts Reopening Today for Both Renewal & New Issue GWL

May 14th, 2020

Although there is no official word on whether or not all of the Probate Courts are reopening, there are several counties who have said they will renew and issue new licenses starting today.  These are to be by APPOINTMENT ONLY and most have an online application they are asking you to fill out (except for signing) and bring with you to your appointment.

We are not sure when all Probate courts are going to begin issuing new and renewals.  If you are in need of either, please contact your Probate Court and ask.  If you find out that it is and not on the list below, please let us know.

You will need to check with you local Probate Court and determine if they are open and what process they will expect you to follow in order to apply.    As of this time, we know that the following Probate Courts are open today:

Barrow, Carroll, Chatham, Cherokee, Cobb, Coweta, Floyd, Hall, Houston, Laurens, Newton, Rabun, Walton and Worth will be accepting appointments as of May 14, 2020.  If you hear of others opening, please let us know and we will update the list.

Clayton County has told one of our members that they are setting up a mail in renewal system and that all instructions should be available on their website tomorrow, May 15, 2020.  If you live in Clayton County, call the Probate Court and ask for instructions.

Also, If your GWL is past renewal, here is what the Governor put in his Executive Order 05.08.20.01 about the extension of your GWL:

Now, THEREFORE, PURSUANT TO THE AFOREMENTIONED GEORGIA LAW, CODE SECTION 38-3-51, AND THE AUTHORITY VESTED IN ME AS THE GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF GEORGIA, IT IS HEREBY

That the requirement under Code Section 16-11-129 that renewals of weapons carry licenses and renewal licenses must be applied for within thirty (30) days after the expiration of such licenses, is hereby suspended for weapons carry licenses and renewal licenses which expire between February 13, 2020 and June 12, 2020

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED

That applications for renewals of such weapons carry licenses and renewal licenses shall be considered to be for a renewal license if the holder of such weapons carry license or renewal license applies within 120 days after the expiration date on the face of license, and that if the Public Health State of Emergency is Extended, then this provision shall apply to any weapons carry license renewal license that expires during the Public Health State of Emergency

This is not what we originally asked for nor what we sued for but it is what we got.  Remember, it is getting closer to election time and it is at least some relief for some of us.  We will soon be able to stop carrying our AR 15s while wearing masks because we have no valid license as recommended by Federal Judge Steve Jones!

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GCO Files Third Suit Against Governor Kemp for Violations of Rights

May 7th, 2020

Monday morning, May 4, 2020,  GeorgiaCarry.Org filed our third lawsuit against Governor Brian Kemp and the state of Georgia in the Superior Court of Union County.  The case is Elizabeth House & GeorgiaCarry.Org, Inc, vs BRIAN KEMP, individually and in his official capacity as Governor of the State of Georgia and Dwain Brackett, individually and in his official capacity as judge of the probate court of Union County in the below violations:

1) Violations of the right to keep and bear arms:
Article I, Sec. I, Par. VIII of the Georgia Constitution guarantee a right to keep and bear arms. By effectively preventing House from carrying a handgun outside her home, motor vehicle, or place of business, either openly or concealed, Kemp and Brackett are violating the Constitution of the State of Georgia
2) Violation of OCGA 16-11-129
By refusing to accept or process GWL applications, Brackett is violating O.C.G.A. § 16-11-129.
3) in Violation of due process.
Art. 1, §1, ¶1 of the Georgia Constitution prohibits deprivation of life, liberty, or property without due process of law. By requiring a GWL to carry a weapon and then refusing to accept or process applications for GWLs, Kemp and Brackett are depriving House of life, liberty, or property without due process under the Georgia Constitution.
The Details of the lawsuit can be found here.
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