City looks to make gun ownership mandatory

Discussion in 'Second Amendment & Legal' started by mmckee1952, Mar 6, 2013.

  1. mmckee1952

    mmckee1952 Banned

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    City looks to make gun ownership mandatory

    By John Bachman

    Nelson, GA. Every homeowner in a local town could soon haveto own a gun or break the law. It's a controversial new plan for the city ofNelson.

    Leaders told Channel 2's John Bachman the reason they needthe law is because the city straddles Cherokee county to the south and PickensCounty to the north.

    That, they said, can lead to slower response times.

    One police officer patrols Nelson, Georgia for eight hoursduring the day. That leaves 16 hours overnight when the city is basicallyunguarded.

    "When he's not here we rely on county sheriffs--howeverit takes a while for them to get here," said Nelson City Councilman DuaneCronic.

    That's why Cronic proposed the ordinance.

    "Every head of household will own and maintain afirearm," he said.

    Bill McNiff lives in Nelson, carries a pistol and supportsthe law.

    "I think every city should do it. I think it should gocountywide too," McNiff said.

    The Nelson ordinance is modeled closely after the 1982 lawpassed in Kennesaw.

    It requires gun ownership, but allows several outs, like ifyou're not physically or mentally able to handle a gun, or if you're a felon orhave religious objections.

    "It's a deterrent ordinance," Cronic said."It tells the potential intruder you better think twice."

    "Why have an ordinance if you're not going to enforceit? What's the point? They just want publicity to say Nelson is a town full ofweapons," Nelson resident Lamar Kellett said.

    Kellett isn't opposed to having guns, just having thegovernment tell him he has to do it.

    "This is big government at its worst. Governmentmandating what a free individual can and will have in his home," Kellettsaid.

    City leaders could make the proposal law at the next councilmeeting, which is April 1.
     
  2. mmckee1952

    mmckee1952 Banned

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    Mandatory Gun Ownership Provisions Under Consideration InCommunities Across The Country

    By GLENN ADAMS

    AUGUSTA, Maine — A town of 140 people in western Maine isconsidering an ordinance making gun ownership mandatory, the latest of ahandful of communities nationwide to pass or consider such a rule even thoughthe measures are widely considered unenforceable.

    All three members of the Board of Selectmen in Byron favorit, and Head Selectman Anne Simmons-Edmunds said she expects residents toapprove it at Monday's town meeting, a New England institution wheretownspeople vote up or down on municipal proposals.

    "We're hoping that the town will get on board with usbut will accept whatever the town wants," Simmons-Edmunds said Friday.

    Communities from Idaho to Georgia have been inspired to"require" or recommend their residents arm themselves ever since agunman killed 26 youngsters and educators Dec. 14 in a school in Newtown,Conn., and raised fears among gun owners about an impending restriction onSecond Amendment rights.

    "We not going to invade anybody's privacy,"Byron's Simmons-Edmunds said. "We just want to send a statement that we'renot going to give up our guns."

    Backed by gun rights supporters, the ordinance is intendedto pre-emptively block gun-control laws, Maine Attorney General Janet Millssaid, adding that it will be "null and void" even if it passes. It ispre-empted by a 2011 state law that bars municipalities from adopting firearmregulations.

    "I think the town is going to have to shoot itdown," Mills said Friday.

    That's what happened this week in Sabattus, in southwesternMaine, where the selectmen took the police chief's advice and voted not to senda similar proposal to voters. David Marsters, a retiree in Sabbatus, hadproposed the ordinance, saying it would act as a hedge against crime.

    The idea has also caught on in Nelson, a city of just over1,300 about 50 miles north of downtown Atlanta, where supporters of thegun-ownership proposal say light police patrols leave city residents virtuallyunprotected for most of the day.

    The proposal contains several exemptions for people whoobject to owning firearms because of personal beliefs, religious reasons ormental disability. In a statement, Mayor Pro Tem Jonathan Bishop said convictedfelons would also be exempted.

    "I am in no way attempting to face off with the federalgovernment, only doing what an elected official is supposed to do,"Councilman Duane Cronic, who proposed the ordinance, said in an email Friday.The rule passed unanimously on its first reading and awaits a final vote April1.

    In Kennesaw, Ga., city officials worried at the time of itslaw's passage in 1982 that population growth in nearby Atlanta might bringcrime to the community, which now has about 30,000 people.

    "They wanted to send an anti-crime message, also,"Craydon said. And it has worked, he argued, with crime staying low.

    Craydon acknowledged Kennesaw's ordinance is"unenforceable" and said no attempt has ever been made to do so.

    Some communities don't go so far as to call for required gunownership.

    Spring City, Utah, moved forward with an ordinance this year"recommending" the idea of keeping firearms. Other ordinances havebeen passed in Virgin, Utah, and Cherry Tree, Pa., largely as symbolicgestures.

    A southwestern Idaho town of 900 people, Greenleaf, adoptedan ordinance in 2006 that encourages residents who don't object on religious orother reasons to keep a gun in the house and to seek training on usingfirearms. City officials said they don't know how many residents own guns.

    In Maine, Byron's Simmons-Edmunds said that probably 90percent of the households in town already have a gun and that passage would notmean the town would enforce it by checking every household.

    The article up for a vote in Maine asks, "Shall thetown of Byron vote to require all households to have firearms and ammunition toprotect the citizens?"