Forget the debate over gun control for a moment: How would you feel if your city suddenly made it illegal not to own a firearm?
A small town in northwest Georgia has proposed just that, arguing that a single police officer isn’t enough to protect its 1,314 residents, reports WSB-TV. The trouble is that Nelson, Ga. spans two counties: Pickens to the north and Cherokee to the south, a situation that results in just one police officer available to patrol the city during the day, leaving it unguarded for 16 hours each night. A call to police still gets results from county sheriffs, but city leaders say response times can be slow.
The solution? Gun-up or else, at least if city councilman Duane Cronic has his druthers. “Every head of household will own and maintain a firearm,” said Cronic, though he claims it’s intended more as a deterrent, adding “It tells the potential intruder you better think twice.”
Would there be exceptions? Yes, reports WSB-TV: If you’re not mentally or physically capable of using a gun, a felon or you object on religious grounds. Still, Nelson residents like Lamar Kellett are having none of it: “This is big government at its worst. Government mandating what a free individual can and will have in his home,” he said.
But wait, haven’t we seen this story before? Indeed: Maybe you remember Kennesaw, Ga., a city of just under 30,000 that already has an ordinance on the books — passed back in 1982 — requiring that each household own a minimum of one firearm plus ammunition. But as Bloomberg notes (via Newser), it’s not really enforced; according to estimates, only half the town is in compliance.