Friday, November 20, 2009

Guns-in Bars Law Ruled Unconstitutional

Posted By on Fri, Nov 20, 2009 at 4:42 PM

It’s time once more for pistol-packers to leave their weapons at the door — or with the sheriff. A Nashville chancellor has declared the guns-in-bars bill, passed last spring in the Tennessee legislature, to be unconstitutional. Here is a link to the original story.

Reaction to the decision depended largely on one’s original position. State Rep. Curry Todd (R-Collierville) vowed to correct the “ambiguity” in the law, cited by Chancellor Claudia Bonnyman, when the legislature reconvenes in January.

State Senator Jim Kyle, on the other hand, rejoiced with the following statement: “I am happy that common sense as well as the rule of law has won the day. I have always believed in the second amendment and will continue to fight to protect it but I fought against allowing guns in bars in the senate because alcohol and firearms do not mix. In the Wild West days of Dodge City you had to check your guns at the town limit so you would think in the twenty-first century common sense would tell us we should not allow guns in bars. I hope my colleagues in both parties in the legislature will once again find their common sense and focus on moving Tennessee forward not jumping to the beat of a special interest with short sighted agenda."

Also happy was Adrienne Pakis-Gillon, Democratic nominee for the District 31 state Senate seat, who in a head to her emailed press release called the now invalidated measure the “Kelsey gun law” after her Republican opponent, former state Rep. Brian Kelsey, one of the bill's co-sponsors. She said in part:

“The voters of District 31 have a chance to stop these kinds of laws and return common sense to the legislature. This ruling gives the restaurant owners who have been troubled by this law a short reprieve. It also gives hope to parents, who knew this law never made sense, that something can be done about other legislation allowing guns in parks. I hope that voters will send me to Nashville to oppose this bill's re-enactment, and let me work for legislation that concerns issues like education and jobs that citizens really care about."

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