In 2008 the Georgia legislature passed and the governor signed a new law allowing Citizens with CCW permits to carry their concealed firearms on public transportation, in restaurants that serve alcohol, state parks, and wildlife management areas. The new law went into effect on July 1, 2008 amid the hand wringing by the always-predictable firearm fear mongers. The end-is-near mentality of these folks never seems to subside no matter how many times their dire predictions prove to be much hoopla and fury signifying nothing. This time they went over the top.
Bus drivers for MARTA (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit) demonstrated and demanded bullet proof shields in buses to protect them from death and carnage they expected to ensue if CCW holders who have passed criminal background checks and otherwise established themselves as peaceful and law abiding were going to be carrying concealed firearms. The drivers screamed to all who could hear that cameras were useless because they don’t save lives; the drivers said they needed something to give them a fighting chance. Never mind that criminals were already carrying concealed firearms on buses without any official clearance as to their good or bad intentions. One wonders if the protesting drivers didn’t feel just a little bit ridiculous.
Now after more than one year, the experience on MARTA shows that all the protests and predictions of death and destruction were, as usual, little more than diabolical incantations by one of the goofiest elements in any society.
Here are some highlights of the actual experience after more than one year:
Murders on Marta dropped from 2 in the twelve months before the new law went into effect to zero during the first twelve months of the new law;
Robberies dropped from 98 to 71;
The overall crime rate per number of riders also dropped since the new law took effect.
MARTA CRIME RATE
PER 1,000 RIDERS
FY06* FY07* FY08* FY09*
3.90% 3.34% 3.35% 3.09%
Aggravated assault went up from 2007 to 2008 and remained constant so far for 2009. The was one rape in the first quarter of 2009 with none during the previous 3 years. No CCW holders were involved in any crimes at all.
See story at Atlanta Gun Rights Examiner