Nelson, Ga., a tiny town near Atlanta, is putting public safety in the hands of its 1,300 residents with a new law requiring gun ownership.
City council members unanimously approved the Family Protection Ordinance on Monday night, both as a safety measure and a means of protecting residents’ Second Amendment rights from federal gun control laws.
“I likened it to a security sign that people put up in their front yards. Some people have security systems, some people don’t, but they put those signs up,” said City Councilman Duane Cronic, who proposed the ordinance, according to the Associated Press. “I really felt like this ordinance was a security sign for our city.”
The measure was also offered “in opposition of any future attempt by the federal government to confiscate personal firearms,” according to the council agenda.
Gun ownership won’t be enforced. The ordinance makes an exception for persona objections, as well as mental and physical handicaps and criminal history.
Cronic told local WSB-TV Channel 2 last month the city has only one officer who patrols for eight hours a day, and residents need guns for their own safety.
“When he’s not here we rely on county sheriffs — however, it takes a while for them to get here,” he said.
Nearby Kennesaw has had a mandatory gun law on the books for 20 years, and credits the ordinance for its low crime rate.