Charlotte Hannah
March 06, 2013

Mandatory Gun Ownership Considered in Southern US City

In many states, gun ownership by private citizens is up for debate. Recent tragic incidents like the shootings in Newtown and Aurora have prompted voters and lawmakers to consider how private gun ownership should be regulated – or whether it should be legal at all.

One town in northern Georgia is taking an entirely different tack.

The city of Nelson, Ga., is considering making gun ownership mandatory. If a proposed mandatory gun ownership ordinance passes, every homeowner who’s mentally and physically able to handle a gun, isn’t a felon or a “pauper” and doesn’t have any religious objections will be legally required to own and maintain a gun and the appropriate ammunition.

There’s a reason for the proposed law, and it’s not that city council is made up of bunch of gun nuts (well, that may be true) or that Nelson is actually named for John Nelson, a rifle-maker (although that’s true as well). It’s because the small city only has one police officer, who protects its 1,400 residents for eight hours a day, reports GPB news.

“When he’s not here we rely on county sheriffs–however it takes a while for them to get here,” explained Nelson City Councilman Duane Cronic.

According to Cronic, homeowners won’t be forced to actually use their guns – simply having them will be a deterrent to crooks. Reports don’t state whether the city has had crime issues, or whether this is just a preventative measure.

Handing a gun to every Tom, Dick and Harry who hasn’t yet presented with any particularly alarming mental problems instead of hiring more police officers seems like a great idea! And am I the only one who finds it a little ironic that pro-gun advocates harp so much about gun ownership being a “freedom” we’re owed – and here we are, telling people they must own a gun?

What do you think?