Gun license is not license to commit a crime

Senator Mitch Seabaugh's picture

Georgia’s Common Sense Lawful Carry Act protects lawfully carrying citizens from unknowingly becoming criminals by clarifying where they can and cannot carry their weapons. They know all too well that a license to carry is not a license to commit a crime. Restricting the rights of law-abiding citizens does not protect the public from random acts of violence. The Lawful Carry Act works to preserve these rights not restrict them.

Recent federal gun restriction proposals by Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) and Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) would only trap law-abiding citizens into becoming criminals. Neither gentleman has thought through the implications of their proposals nor do they have the power to encroach on Georgia’s right to work for its citizens. We have a representative government in the United States; a government that is elected by the people to work for the people. Many federal officials in Washington have forgotten this and the recent federal proposals against the Lawful Carry Act are the perfect example.

In this post 9-11 era, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is in charge of security of travel on airplanes. TSA set up the security checkpoints, taking responsibility for security from that point on and leaving the other areas of the airport (non-sterile) up to each state to decide their own restrictions.

TSA Administrator Kip Hawley was noted as saying that the TSA does not regulate weapons in the non-sterile areas, that weapons regulation in those areas is up to the states, that many states allow weapons in those areas, and that that is not a concern of TSA. Six states other than GA ban carry in large public airports. Three more states ban concealed carry but not open carry. The remaining 40 states do not make it a crime for lawful carry in the non-sterile areas of the airport. There have been no reported incidents of lawfully carrying citizens committing crimes in airports.

The attacks on the U.S. were traitorous, but let’s remember that Georgia’s proposed legislation is talking about lawfully carrying gun owners. I can’t remember the last time a criminal, terrorist or somebody willing to commit a crime checked the law books before they did it. Their focus is on causing fear, mass destruction and violence regardless of the law. They don’t look for other people’s weapons. They have their own. Our goal in the Georgia legislature is to remove the “gotcha” situation in our carrying laws so that our lawfully carrying citizens don’t unknowingly commit a crime.

For example, it is currently legal to check in any type of firearm as luggage. Avid hunters who travel to other states do this every day. In addition, other states recognize Georgia’s carry permits so that lawfully carrying citizens can continue to exercise their constitutional right to carry a firearm. So, how do you get from your car to the check-in counter at the airport without breaking the law?

Many lawfully carrying citizens have their weapon in their vehicles every day. If they get a last minute call to pick somebody up from the airport, they may not have time to run home and leave their firearm there. They will then unknowingly break the law by simply picking up a loved one from the airport.

What about travelers who return late at night and walk across the dark parking lots? They have the right to protect themselves and don’t need to unknowingly break the law.

How much more federal encroachment do we need? First they want to dictate healthcare and now citizens’ rights to lawfully carry a firearm. The next thing we’ll hear is that the federal government doesn’t want lawfully carrying citizens to have guns in their cars on federal highways.

Johnson and Lautenburg have clearly not thought through their proposals. If the federal government expands the federally secured area to the entire airports, security check points will have to move to the outer doors costing states, businesses and the federal government tons of money. Check-in counters will have to move to the outside of airports. Numerous traffic problems and pedestrians unsafely standing in lines outside the airport will result from movement of security check points. Washington cannot continue to push federal regulations on the states and taxpayers that cost more money.

Also consider for a moment Johnson’s home county of DeKalb with pretty high crime rates. Is it common sense to restrict the rights lawfully carrying citizens to protect themselves and leave them vulnerable to criminal attacks? Johnson may want to focus on working with his local officials to reduce crime rather than make criminals out of lawfully carrying citizens in airports.

Johnson and Lautenburg’s proposals take aim at the wrong people. Their suggestions will only make law-abiding citizens criminals. They will not fight crime and terrorism. Government should work for the people to protect their freedoms and constitutionally given rights.

This is just another example of the federal government attempting to flex its muscles that will cost law-abiding citizens their freedoms and taxpayers more money.

Washington should abide by its own rules and leave the regulation of non-sterile areas of the airports to the states. Georgia’s Common Sense Lawful Carry Act is exactly the common sense legislation needed to protect individual freedoms without compromising public safety.

[Sen. Mitch Seabaugh represents the 28th Senate District which includes Coweta and Heard counties and portions of Carroll and Troup counties. His phone is 404-656-6446; his email is]

AirForceDude's picture
Joined: 08/10/2006
I agree a gun license is not

I agree a gun license is not a license to commit crime. What a no brainer. I thought the days of citizens needing to tote guns were gone. Now we have some legislator who is paranoid that we are all under attack from criminals and we need to start carrying guns to protect ourselves. Giving gun toting privileges to access all places, especially in airports, has got to be the most stupid proposal I've ever heard. I have confidence in the police/law enforcement to subdue the criminals. Police are trained in weaponry and law enforcement. Individuals who want to carry a gun everywhere they go most likely have no training in law enforcement or weapons and have delusions of being the white hat wearing cowboy who will save society from all the crime. I have no problems with firearms in the home. I just don't believe in allowing anyone to carry a gun in public places unless it is in performance of official duties as law enforcement/security.

DBarlow's picture
Joined: 05/03/2010
I'm a Gun Owner & I know how to use it!

Recently I was listening to American Family Radio, prior to moving to Georgia, and the discussion was "carry permits" and "gun ownership". One caller had an outstanding solution. His neighbor, these are his comments, is a liberal nutcase who doesn't believe in gun permits or gun ownership. So, the homeowner posted this 4'x8' sign in his yard, "Homeowner is armed and dangerous. Neighbor is a liberal nutcase and doesn't own any guns. Rob his place and I promise not to shoot you". The radio host required the homeowner to send him a picture before he was allowed to comment on air. I like this guy! BTW, I have a concealed carry permit and I know how to use it.
David Barlow
Praise God for our Armed Services. Remember, Freedom isn't Free!!

S. Lindsey
S. Lindsey's picture
Joined: 12/31/2008
DBarlow there are a few anti 2nd amendment folks here

but only a few.. After all this is the South.

I carry everywhere.. there is an old saying. among Police.. I would rather be tried by 12 than carried by 6..

I will defend myself and my family no matter what..

G35 Dude
G35 Dude's picture
Joined: 02/15/2006
Do you read?

I thought the days of citizens needing to tote guns were gone.

What? Where have you been? Do you read the papers or watch the news?


I have confidence in the police/law enforcement to subdue the criminals.

You think the police can be everywhere?

In practically every situation, when gun rights are granted to law abiding citizens the over all crime rate goes down. Read "More Guns, Less Crime". Harvard researcher John Lott Jr proves this with about 10 years of research. I've seen a lot of liberals attack his research methods but none to my knowledge have done this extensive of research that proves him wrong.

WakeUp's picture
Joined: 03/14/2006
I have a license...

and when I know the law enforcement / security (I assume you mean private) have my six, then I won't feel the need to carry. Until then, and until the scum of the earth is removed, I will utilize the 2nd admendment. To me it's is rather easy: the law gives me the right to carry; conversely, it gives you the right to not carry. See, we are both happy. Surely you don't think your rights are more important than mine......

AtHomeGym's picture
Joined: 01/18/2007
Concealed Carry

When you are confronted by a thug,there are two ways for him to convince you to comply with his demands: one by verbal threat, two by force. If he knows you are possibly armed, that elimates one maybe both options. If he proceeds to option two, then it's a double tap to center mass. Granted, most thugs may not be smart enough to know that you are possibly armed. Their loss,society's gain. And if you think I'm gonna let some perp follow me from the airport thinking "Oh, he's a law-abiding citizen and won't have a gun"--well think again. Change the law--it does indeed pass the common sense test for law-abiding, licensed citizens. Meanwhile, it encourages civil disobedience from folks who are only concerned with personal safety.

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