Zoo Backtracks on Gun Rule
(RightWing.org) – A Georgia zoo has dropped a ban on guests carrying guns after Second Amendment advocates threatened legal action. Defiant officials insist the ban was legal, but say they don’t want the distraction of a court case — for now.
"Zoo Atlanta is choosing not to undergo the major distraction & expense of litigation, but will instead give public officials an opportunity to consider & address this issue."
Accept NOTHING less than your FULL individual rights. You'll eventually win.https://t.co/yBC1rCJQm3
— Young Americans for Liberty (@YALiberty) November 3, 2022
On September 1, Zoo Atlanta adopted a new policy that banned guests from bringing guns or other weapons onto the premises unless they were members of law enforcement. However, in October, local gun rights activist Phillip Evans raised the policy change on his blog. Evans says that because the zoo is located in Grant Park, which is city-owned land, the action is invalid. A 2014 Georgia law makes it illegal to ban firearms from public property.
Last week, the zoo backed down. In a statement, officials said they still think the ban is legal, but to avoid the “major distraction and expense of litigation,” they’re dropping the ban with immediate effect. However, they left the way open to reinstate it by adding they want state and city officials to “consider and address this issue.”
In 2014, Evans entered Atlanta Botanical Garden while openly carrying a handgun and was escorted off the premises. GeorgiaCarry.org sued the Garden on Evans’s behalf, citing the same law he raised against the zoo, but in 2016 a judge ruled that although the Garden is on city-owned land, it has a long-term lease, and that gives it the right to impose a gun ban.
Evans went on to write complaints to multiple venues and events that had imposed gun bans and has been blamed for the cancellation of Atlanta’s Music Midtown festival.
Copyright 2022, RightWing.org