Tennessee Wants Only Real Guns Near Schools; Toy Ones Could Put An Eye Out
Not all guns are lethal weapons. And thanks to a new Tennessee law working its way through the Rocky Top Reason Mill, these poser firearms will have no place near the state's schools. Real guns? They're still totally cool and not just for field trips to Graceland.
On Tuesday, "limited government" Republicans pushed a bill through the Tennessee House of Representatives that eliminates any local ordinances preventing people with gun permits from taking their roscoes to state parks. Along the way, Rep. Charles Sargent, (R-Awful Backyard BBQs) proposed the following amendment that was approved by a 65-21 count.
"A person commits an offense who intentionally carries an explosive, explosive weapon, permanently disabled firearm, hoax device, imitation firearm, machete, or sword openly within one hundred fifty feet (150') of the real property that comprises the grounds or facilities of a public or private preschool, elementary school, middle school, or secondary school,"
I don't want to get too technical here, but when a fat finger pulls the trigger thingy on a real gun, a hammer rams into the magic fire dust in the back of a bullet's safe case and a small explosion sends the little guy down the patriot chute. And "ta-da!" -- a gunshot is born. But in case you're wondering, House Republicans were quick to clarify that guns are not considered "explosive weapons" for the sake of the law.
In fact, the Tennessee House of Representatives decided to cut gun owners a break with this amendment since they believe federal "Guns Free School Zones" are sufficient protection for the kiddos. Thus, anyone who doesn't a have permit can't take a gun within 1,000 feet of a school. But there is no cumbersome 1,000-feet or 150-feet safe zone for permit-holding gun owners with functioning guns that shoot real bullets. So the 0-150 feet area surrounding Tennessee's schools could actually be called the "School Guns Zone." Weirdly enough, the amendment's only exception is for machetes used in the course of employment. So don’t worry. If you’re a local Samurai, sugar cane harvester or landscaper with little attention to detail, you can join all the gun-toting parents and bring your large knife with you when you pick up your kid from school. Otherwise, you’re going to need to wait down the street with the antiques dealers and the sword swallowers or risk being charged with a Class A misdemeanor.
According to bill sponsor Mike Harrison (R-Did Ya Really Think It Through, Guy?), the amendment is meant to address a Nashville-area loon known as Radnor Lake Rambo (their name, not ours). RLR stomps back and forth outside of local schools with his AR-15 and hands out pamphlets concerning alleged encroachments on 2nd Amendment Rights while the cops persecute him by not really bothering him.
However, from the text of the bill, as long as Radnor Lake Rambo’s rifle is functioning and he has a permit, this law would do nothing to prevent his Second Amendment tantrums in front of area schools. So here's an important note for Dickbag ManBaby Rambo (our name): If you want to keep creeping out kids, make sure that AR-15 works. Otherwise you’re in violation of this genius piece of legislation that would definitely impress James Madison.
There has been no word from the NRA or Fake Gun Lobby about this egregious violation of the Second Amendment. An Amendment, mind you, that doesn't just grant an absolute right to bear arms for the sake of firing magazines of armor-piercing bullets. Arms also need to be displayed on mantles, used to drench unsuspecting friends, or incorporated into racist Old West role playing games. At least that's how I would read it if I was a conservative Supreme Court justice.
Besides, it gets hot and humid in the Volunteer State. Isn't it better to have a Super Soaker and not need it than to need one and not have it? And when seconds count, the swimmin' hole is just minutes away. Who has the courage to address this tyranny? Does the NRA really care about the Second Amendment? Or does Smith & Wesson need to market a semiautomatic 9-mililiter first? Hopefully this is something that can be rectified before the NRA holds its annual conference next week in Nashville. For shame.
[The Tennessean h/t tipster Lisa]