Guns will now be allowed at football tailgates
Earlier this month, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signed a bill that allows people to carry concealed weapons on college campuses throughout the state. On July 1, the bill becomes law, which means the University of Georgia and other public colleges have to prepare themselves for an upcoming school year that could look like a Charles Bronson flick. In preparation, University of Georgia chancellor Steve Wrigley released guidelines outlining the areas where guns will and will not be permitted according to this new law.
In the process of describing the prohibited areas, he details an interesting area where guns will still be allowed.
Even license-holders may not carry a handgun into the following locations on college/university-owned or leased property:
Buildings and property used for athletic sporting events. This exception includes stadiums, gymnasiums, and similar facilities in which intercollegiate games are staged (but does not extend to so-called ‘tailgating’ areas where fans may congregate outside the gates of the sports facility). It does not extend to student recreation centers and similar facilities that are not used for intercollegiate games.
That’s right. People can have guns at tailgates right outside the stadium. Now where you find grown-ups doing keg stands on a Saturday morning, you’ll also find Glocks and Berettas. What could possibly go wrong?
This isn’t the first set of college football fans in the South we’ve had to worry about. Back in March, the Arkansas legislature passed a law that would allow guns inside college football stadiums. It was part of a larger concealed carry law that the National Rifle Association helped ram through the Arkansas state government. Unfortunately, Republican legislators hadn’t really considered that the law they had just enacted allowed people to pack heat at Razorback games. Fortunately, their senses returned, and within a few days, they drafted another bill to keep guns out of the stadium itself, where they wouldn’t be within reach of rowdy fans.
Georgia fans won’t be able to bring their guns inside the stadium either. Georgia legislators learned enough to make that tweak before passing the law. But, they’ll be able to keep their guns up until kickoff and return to them immediately after the final whistle blows. They can enjoy the game, safe in the knowledge that they can leave the stadium and reunite with their pistols if they sense a crack in their fragile masculinity forming during their time away.