The state of Georgia is very pro-gun. The city of Atlanta is less so.
In fact, throughout the years, the one place most likely to try and test the bounds of the state’s preemption law has been the city of Atlanta. They want to restrict guns and they just haven’t been allowed to.
Over the last few months, though, the state’s gun laws have been cited as the grounds for a couple of music festivals to shut down. The reason? Because public property can’t restrict guns from the premises, even if it’s rented out to a private entity.
It seems that fact is being used to undermine the city’s bid to host the Democratic National Convention.
The battle between Chicago and Atlanta over hosting the 2024 Democratic convention is heating up with a new claim from Illinois that Georgia’s lenient open-carry gun laws — already an issue with several public events in Atlanta — could make security a nightmare.
With a decision possibly weeks away, officials involved agree that Atlanta and Chicago now appear to lead New York, the third of the finalists still under consideration. Union officials have for weeks pressed President Biden and the Democratic National Committee to pick the more union-friendly city; Chicago has more than 30 unionized hotels while Atlanta has just two, they say.
But recent events have brought a new argument: Georgia’s lenient gun laws could make it extremely difficult to keep firearms away from the delegates. The Secret Service is likely to declare the convention a “national security special event” and supersede state ordinances with its own rules inside a fortified perimeter.
But in hotels, along bus routes and at meetings and parties far from the core convention sites, guns could find their way in, security consultants are warning, especially if Georgia’s Republican governor, Brian Kemp, holds to his pro-gun views and refuses to intervene.
“It just creates a tense environment,” said Charles H. Ramsey, who once led police forces in Washington and Philadelphia and now does security consulting. “To me it’s an issue.”
Wait…you mean the state’s gun laws may well be responsible for keeping legions of Democrats out of our state?
Well just throw me in the briar patch, why don’t ya?
Seriously, there’s nothing about this that doesn’t tickle me in unseemly ways.
See, I don’t care one way or another where the Democrats hold their convention. I just don’t. But the idea that our gun laws may keep a pile of them outside of our borders makes me care far more than I should, mostly from the standpoint of this being a hilariously good deal for us.
Yes, I know this will be a hit to Atlanta’s economy, but I honestly don’t care about that, either. I’m frankly sick of the oversized pull they’ve had in this state, and while it’s not as bad here as it’s been in places like New York or California, it’s also just a matter of time before it is.
Unless, of course, there are some hits to the city’s economy that make some relocate to other states.
And frankly, no one else in the state is really going to be upset to see Atlanta take a hit. The perception has been that they’ve drawn in so many resources from our tax dollars, leaving nothing for the rest of us, so many will likely laugh at this one.
We’re definitely not going to be upset in the least.