ATLANTA - Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has signed a bill that would allow licensed gun owners to carry concealed handguns on public college campuses.
It's called the campus carry bill: http://on.11alive.com/2qHm4lL
Fulton County Commission Chairman John Eaves is the father of both a college student and high school senior. He said his son was robbed at gunpoint on his first day at Morehouse College in Atlanta and opposes the campus carry bill.
"His first day of school, four years ago, he was robbed at gunpoint. It was a very traumatic situation for him ...and so I don't see this law prohibiting or preventing that type of thing happening," Eaves said.
In fact, Eaves said putting guns on college campuses would complicate things. He said he served as an college administrator and handled discipline.
"The unreported thing that happens on college campus is discipline. I used to oversee discipline and so now you're adding guns into the mix I think it's a very dangerous and complicated situation," he said.
"Young people are very volatile. There are a lot of challenges on campus in terms of managing the situation. So when you put guns in the mix, it's a very dangerous situation."
Eaves also questioned how the state would implement the changes before the law goes into effect on July 1 of this year.
In other states with campus carry laws like Texas, there was a full year before the law went into effect to train and educate the students and the public about the law. Georgia has around four months before students return to campus in the fall.
HB 280 authorizes the carrying and possession of firearms and handguns by license holders on public college campuses. Read the law, here: http://bit.ly/2q7guvA
The bill has exemptions for athletic facilities; student housing; preschool space; facilities used by high school students; and disciplinary hearings—more exemptions than many backers wanted.
Backers of the bill say holders of state gun permits, age 21 and up, should be able to defend themselves with firearms on college campuses.
Critics of the bill cited last year’s veto by Deal, and argued that colleges and guns are an uneasy combination.
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