Guns in bars to face local legal challenge

Thursday, June 18, 2009 at 12:00am
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So, do 37 other states have laws similar to the one Tennessee’s legislature passed this month allowing guns in establishments that serve alcohol?

Well, that’s the statement the media and proponents of the guns-in-bars bill tossed around throughout the debate about the legislation’s merits. Everyone from the bill’s sponsor, state Sen. Doug Jackson, to conservative talk show hosts to the media spokesman for the National Rifle Association have said something to that effect.

The numbers did change from time to time.

The Associated Press reported when the bill passed that “37 other states have similar laws.” Bradley County Sheriff Tim Gobble told the Cleveland (Tenn.) Daily Banner, “There are 38 other states who already have similar laws like this in motion and it seems to be working for them.”

And there’s Jackson himself, who told everyone from WKRN Channel 2 to Fox News, the number was actually 40 states.

“I would just point out that 40 states allow citizens to carry guns where alcohol is served,” the senator said.

Yet it turns out that no matter which of those numbers are used, they are wrong.

Numbers worth exploring

Based on extensive legal research conducted by Nashville attorney David Randolph Smith of the local firm Smith and Schmidt, the actual figure is nearly the inverse.

There ARE 37 states according to Smith that have laws mandating the issuance of concealed weapons permits. But of those 37 states, 27 explicitly prohibit guns in places where alcohol is served.

In fact, there are only 15 states in the country which have circumstances remotely similar to the one Tennessee will be in on July 14 when the law goes into effect. Those states issue concealed weapons permits, but do not explicitly ban guns in places serving alcohol. They also preempt local governments from regulating firearms.

In effect, a person with a handgun in a bar in any of those 15 states is not committing a criminal act. But Tennessee’s new law goes one step further than that. It is the first state in the entire country to expressly allow handguns in places that serve alcohol.

Smith believes Tennessee committed “legislative malpractice” when its General Assembly voted to override Gov. Phil Bredesen’s veto of the guns-in-bars bill, and he intends to do something about. He’s leading a coalition that’s formulating a potential legal challenge to guns-in-bars.

“In effect, Tennessee by this new law has legislated a public nuisance and created an explicit right to bring handguns into bars,” Smith said. “This is unprecedented in U.S. law and runs afoul of the law and policy in the vast majority of states that do not permit concealed weapons in bars, or otherwise restrict, or prohibit loaded and concealed weapons in public places.”

Dread helps line up plaintiffs

Working with Smith on a potential legal challenge is Nashville attorney Adam Dread, a former Metro Council member and a handgun owner.

It was Dread who introduced the notion that Metro could prohibit guns in Nashville bars by regulating beer permits. His idea eventually led to a bill sponsored by At-large Council members Megan Barry and Charlie Tygard.

In the end, the concept fizzled out when Metro's legal department determined that state law preempted Metro’s ability to regulate firearms. Tygard has withdrawn the bill, but Dread has vowed to fight on.

“We’re going to build a coalition of like-minded folks who want to do everything we can to keep Nashville safer,” Dread said.

Dread said he would also be reaching out to prominent Nashville organizations, including the business community, the hospitality community and faith-based groups.

The coalition could come in the form of a lawsuit challenging the state law as creating a public nuisance and putting those who work in bars and restaurants in a danger.

Smith said his preference would be for Metro to take the lead and challenge the state law, but so far no momentum has built on that front. Metro Director of Law Sue Cain had no comment for this story.

If Metro decides to stay out of the fight, then Smith and Dread said they would pursue a legal challenge on another front.

Already more than one Nashville server has agreed to file a complaint claiming the law creates an unsafe work environment. Fearing potential backlash, the server declined to comment for this story.

Local restaurateur Randy Rayburn said he’s on board to be included in a legal challenge, too, and explained his stance.

“I think that the vocal minority of supporters of this legislation perpetrated fraud in their presentation of facts to the legislators and the public,” Rayburn said.

Guns and booze don’t mix

Smith said his goal is not simply to bring to light the fact that most states expressly outlaw carrying weapons in establishments that serve alcohol. Smith believes case law demonstrates that courts believe the possession of guns around alcohol is in and of itself a public nuisance.

A 1983 Washington state Supreme Court ruling upheld the constitutionality of a municipal ordinance limiting the possession of firearms where alcoholic beverages are dispensed by the drink.

In 1996, Mark Lake was charged with “unlawful carrying of firearm in establishment licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages.” Lake’s case went to the New Mexico Court of Appeals, where the court ruled the statute “was reasonably related to public health, safety and welfare.”

Smith said the court’s logic matched with his own, that limiting firearms in places that serve alcohol is an issue of public health, safety and welfare.

“The ultimate victory, if it would ever happen, would be for the court to recognize a constitutional right to be free from gun violence, public or private,” Smith said.

Smith does have a history of swimming upstream. He was the attorney who represented a Spanish-speaking woman who brought forward a pre-election challenge to the English Only referendum. Smith believed the English Only proposal was unconstitutional and presented special circumstances to be enjoined.

He lost, but Smith showed a propensity to fight for specific social issues.

“If Metro won’t take up the issue, then we are going to bring a legal challenge,” he said.

47 Comments on this post:

By: pandabear on 6/18/09 at 6:10

Hi Nate,
You know, it's hard to keep your opinions and points of view out of
it when reporting, but that's the job.

Right at the top you say "...allowing guns in establishments that serve alcohol?"
...when you know that's not true.

It's food establishments that ALSO serve alcohol.

Any place that cards people ( 21 or older...) is not included.

By: pandabear on 6/18/09 at 6:13

“I think that the vocal minority of supporters of this legislation perpetrated fraud in their presentation of facts to the legislators and the public,” Rayburn said."

How 'bout some facts Mr. Rayburn ?

...or should I say Mr. Nate.

By: creative on 6/18/09 at 6:19

No. The law as passed includes all bars and nightclubs that serve alcohol as well as restaurants that serve alcohol. The > 21 restriction was in the original bill but was removed so that all bars, nightclubs are included.

By: creative on 6/18/09 at 6:32

27 states expressly prohibit guns in bars. TX for example--you can take a gun into a restaurant that serves alcohol but not into a bar. Same for GA, KY etc. This new TN law permits guns in bars & nightclubs that serve alcohol and no state law expressly allows this and the in the vast majority of states this is illegal.

By: Terrier on 6/18/09 at 6:39

When are these folks going to allow the law-abiding permit holders to demonstrate the fact that they're law-abiding? They seem to believe that anyone that dares to carry a legal weapon in a bar is automatically going to disregard the illegality of drinking while carrying, and then start waving their gun around. That's BULL!

This law was designed to let the good guys even the odds against the bad guys that don't care what the law reads. How does that make for a public nuisance? The fact that a bad guy has to take pause before doing something bad?

It absolutely galls me that these self righteous puds assume that a law abiding permit holder won't obey the law, and insist that they be rendered helpless against the lawless.

If TN is the only state to allow it... It's about time, and it makes me pround to be a Tennessean!

By: nvestnbna on 6/18/09 at 6:53

I guess now the doormen will be carding for age and carry permits.

This is really a bad idea - the general public's going to view this as anyone can carry a gun into one of these establishments, when someone gets hurt, I'm sure it will be the result of someone who didn't have a carry permit - so the proponents won't have any responsibility.

I'm glad Rayburn, Tygard, Berry, Dread and others are fighting this.

By: idgaf on 6/18/09 at 6:54

STOP USING THE TERM BARS COMRADE.

By: Kosh III on 6/18/09 at 7:52

" The law as passed includes all bars and nightclubs that serve alcohol as well as restaurants that serve alcohol. "

Did you miss that Commissar id?

By: Kosh III on 6/18/09 at 7:57

Terrier

Explain how this helps protect you or others?

A thief comes in and has a shotgun and demands the patrons give him their valuables. You reach for your gun, he sees it and shoots you.

That is not an unlikely scenario. Now can you provide a plausible scenario of how you would stop someone like this? Give us convincing arguments for the necessity and also give reliable statistics and facts on just how very dangerous it is to go to TFIFridays for dinner.

By: Jeremiah_29-7 on 6/18/09 at 8:14

Thank goodness SOMEONE has some sense! Full speed ahead on any coalition or any legal challenge to this CRAZY law! Restaurant owners hate it, servers are scared of it, police chiefs don't want it.... Only gun idealogues like it.

By: dangremillion on 6/18/09 at 9:02

there will be no ultimate victory. there have always been illegal carrying of weapons and always will be. if you are in a bar where some drunk illegally has a gun and wants to use it, you better hope someone else in the bar has a legal carry permit and has a loaded gun on him and uses it before that drunk empties his clip and wounds and kills several. or hope the bartender has a gun. it will take about 10 min for a cop to arrive and by that time it will be all over. where are all the stories of legal gun carriers firing off there weapons in a restaurant or bar? they are carried there all the time. it is just no one knows it. remember what has happened all over the usa when crazed people enter a school or other building and begin firing. there rarely has been ANYONE there armed who can protect the innocent. if you want to save lives, lobby to tighten drivers lisence laws, and make cellphones, texting, and reading while operating a motor vehicle a jailable offence. you cannot control who carries a gun in this country or the world for that matter. read the news and your history books.

By: slzy on 6/18/09 at 9:25

no body cares if you get jacked up or shot in a beer joint.

By: Pol Mordreth on 6/18/09 at 9:30

Creative: You are incorrect about the text of the law. The law allows licensed carriers to carry in restaurants that serve alcohol. Period. It does not allow carriers to carry in any place that serves alcohol unless it is a restaurant.

I bet I know where the difference in the two calims comes in. He looked for laws prohibiting firearms in bars. There is no such thing as a bar here in TN as a legal matter. In order to serve liquor or wine, you must be a restaurant. You must make 51% of your revenue from food, be open at least 5 days, and have a real kitchen. If you do not, you cannot serve. You can serve beer without being a restaurant, but under the new law you cannot carry there.

I have only looked at the laws that pertain to restaurants that serve alcohol, not bars, in other states, and there are 41 that currently allow carry. I would suspect that many of those states have 'bars' defined under law and prohibit carry there.

I think that this lawyer is knowingly using deceptive language to confuse the issue.

Regards,
Pol

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 10:34

Pol Mordeth the issue is not about restaurants its about bars. the question is weather these laws are similar and in most of the states where people are allowed to bring guns into restaurants they qualify the law to ban guns in bars. we had a section that would do this but the senate removed it. Alcohol and guns are a volatile combination as defined by president and Tennessee law. on top of that may of these laws say guns are not allowed into a place of public nuisance. for ex. Mississippi

No license issued pursuant to this section shall authorize any person to carry a concealed pistol or revolver into any place of nuisance as defined in Section 95-3-1, Mississippi Code of 1972; any police, sheriff or highway patrol station; any detention facility, prison or jail; any courthouse; any courtroom, except that nothing in this section shall preclude a judge from carrying a concealed weapon or determining who will carry a concealed weapon in his courtroom; any polling place; any meeting place of the governing body of any governmental entity; any meeting of the Legislature or a committee thereof; any public park unless for the purpose of participating in any authorized firearms-related activity; any school, college or professional athletic event not related to firearms; any portion of an establishment, licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises

Tennessee is the only state that explicitly allows one to take a gun into a bar because they do not distinguish between a restaurant and a bar.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 10:45

the problem arises when there are guns in "restaurants" which are actually for all intensive purposes BARS. which this law allows.

By: Tull on 6/18/09 at 10:47

We all read the comments about WHAT will happen!
Here are some stats about what happens when citizens are allowed to carry.
* Florida adopted a right-to-carry law in 1987. At the time the law was passed, critics predicted increases in violence. The founder of the National Organization of Women, Betty Friedan stated:

"lethal violence, even in self defense, only engenders more violence." (13)

* When the law went into effect, the Dade County Police began a program to record all arrest and non arrest incidents involving concealed carry licensees. Between September of 1987 and August of 1992, Dade County recorded 4 crimes committed by licensees with firearms. None of these crimes resulted in an injury. The record keeping program was abandoned in 1992 because there were not enough incidents to justify tracking them. (13)(15)

* 221,443 concealed carry licenses were issued in Florida between October of 1987 and April of 1994. During that time, Florida recorded 18 crimes committed by licensees with firearms. (15)

* As of 1998, nationwide, there has been 1 recorded incident in which a permit holder shot someone following a traffic accident. The permit holder was not charged, as the grand jury ruled the shooting was in self defense. (7)

* As of 1998, no permit holder has ever shot a police officer. There have been several cases in which a permit holder has protected an officer's life. (7)

By: joeboone82 on 6/18/09 at 10:58

Why do some of you oppose the 2nd amendment so much. IF THE OWNER DOES NOT WANT THE GUNS IN HIS/HER ESTABLISHMENT, THEN THEY JUST POST A SIGN, CASE SOLVED! If I park somewhere a little distance aways downtown, and want to walk to Big River, Bailey's, etc to have dinner (a restaurant that has a bar inside), I do not necessarily feel like I need that gun inside with me, but I would like to carry it with me for the walk, and ALSO so that I do not have to leave it in my car. Do your research on statistics, not what you see from the media, before you become anti-gun. Also, the majority rules on this issue and on everything else in this country..... deal with it.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 11:07

the issue is not with the right to carry law but the fact that they have a right to carry in a bar. And its not with the permit holders, its with the possibility of a drunkard seizing the weapon. 1 more thing to be considered with this law is that the owners of the establishment are liable for any discharge of a gun, even by a conceal carry permit holder.

how do you enforce this law since if you have a gun you cant drink. and who goes into a bar and doesn't drink.

By: Tull on 6/18/09 at 11:35

"its with the possibility of a drunkard seizing the weapon"
So we should just accept that we are not capable of defending ourselves?
221,443 concealed carry licenses were issued in Florida between October of 1987 and April of 1994. During that time, Florida recorded 18 crimes committed by licensees with firearms.
That's .008 %, concealed carry holders are some of the most responsible people in the country.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 11:51

Florida doesn't allow guns in bars

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 11:54

Under section 790.06(12), a Florida license to carry a concealed weapon does not authorize a person to carry a concealed weapon or firearm into:
Any place of nuisance (see § 823.05)
...
Any portion of an establishment licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises, which portion of the establishment is primarily devoted to such purpose;

do your research

By: HCPforme on 6/18/09 at 12:09

"Based on extensive legal research conducted by Nashville attorney David Randolph Smith of the local firm Smith and Schmidt" - I hope he is not billing anyone for this shoddy research.

"It is the first state in the entire country to expressly allow handguns in places that serve alcohol." What? Are you kidding me? So AP got it entirely wrong? They said similar not exactly the same.

'A 1983 Washington state Supreme Court ruling upheld the constitutionality of a municipal ordinance limiting the possession of firearms where alcoholic beverages are dispensed by the drink." - Which was overturned when Washington State passed their preemption law on firearms in 1994. TN already has this law on the books, which has previously been explained to some council members by Metro Director of Law Sue Cain .

This should be called an opinion piece because it sure sounds like the "reporter" has not done due diligence to check the reported "facts".

Based on Mr. Smiths' analysis, you have no worries Nashville, since TN does not issue concealed weapons permits. You read correctly. TN issues Handgun Carry Permits. Vermont doesn't issue permits at all, because you don't NEED a permit to carry in Vermont. So if he was looking for concealed permits, he missed two right there.

There is no legal definition under TN state law for Bars that differentiates them from Restaurants. This was done on purpose, probably so your local family restaurant could serve liquor by the drink. Yes, some states ban guns from bars or bar areas of restaurants, but the very SAME states often allow carry in restaurants that serve alcohol.

The law has been passed, POST your Bar if you feel the need, and MOVE ON....

By: Tull on 6/18/09 at 12:26

All I am saying is people speculated that the streets would be like the wild west with people pulling there weapons after traffic arguments but that never occured, quite the opposite. There are an estimated 250,000 to 500,000 times a year that a gun is responsible for preventing a crime, not that it is shot but just having and showing the guns prevents crime. When thugs know you are not armed they prey on you. This was in another article: Since the beginning of the year, the intersection of Second Avenue and Commerce has had 75 calls for assaults. The nightclub Graham Central Station has had 38 assault calls on its own. Like someone said earlier walking back to your car is where you are likley to be assaulted. I would bet that the number of assaults in places like this go down after this law goes into effect. Its easy to say people are going to drink and pull out there guns but why don't we wait and see previous assumptions have not come true! If you don't feel safe going in a place that allows LAW ABIDING trained citizens to legally carry a firearm then find a place that decides to restrict that right and do business with them.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 12:31

in spite of the fact that Tennessee issues carry permits which doesn't effect where its legal to carry guns i.e. schools, govt buildings and bars in most states . Tennessee still is the only state that expressly allows guns in bars. this action precludes local governments from enacting common law nuisance law which all other states are still able to do. previously in these states a local government could shut down a bar if it was deemed a public nuisance i.e. there were shootings in it. now local governments in tennessee are prevented from doing this because there is an explicit law that allows guns in bars.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 12:35

if you wanted guns in bars they should have just repealed the old law instead of adding this explicit corollary

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 12:41

most if not all states recognize loaded guns in bars are a public nuisance

By: w00t on 6/18/09 at 12:59

rubixcube said:
"previously in these states a local government could shut down a bar if it was deemed a public nuisance i.e. there were shootings in it. now local governments in tennessee are prevented from doing this because there is an explicit law that allows guns in bars."
That is a perfect example of opinion without facts or one without a lot of thought! Local governments in TN will be able to shut down any place as a public nuisance because of shootings, or anything else deemed to be a nuisance, even if it is legal to CARRY a gun with a proper carry permit.

rubixcube said:
"most if not all states recognize loaded guns in bars are a public nuisance"
Come on, your opinions throughout this comments section show you don't do your research.

Stop trying to scare people into forming an opinion that is just plain wrong.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 1:00

TN law is not similar to states that allows guns where alcohol is served in restaurants. FL, TX, GA for example allow permitted guns in restaurants but not in the bar or bar area (FL).  TX and GA for example say if >50% sales are from alcohol, no guns allowed. The NRA is conflating bars with restaurants, ignoring the express prohibitions on guns in bars in the vast majority of states, and is flatly  misstating the number of states that allow guns where alcohol is served. The clear majority rule is clearly no guns in bars.  

By: w00t on 6/18/09 at 1:09

Come on people, read the actual bill: http://www.capitol.tn.gov/Bills/106/Chapter/PC0339.pdf

Pay special attention to: "the serving of such meals shall be the principal business conducted."
This bill is targeted to restaurants. Places of business where there is just alcohol served, oh let's call them 'bars' for the sake of argument, are not included.

It is really nice to know that in a couple years, we will look back and realize that crime in and around restaurants has gone down. We will also know that all this "the sky is falling" talk was just scaremongering.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 1:11

all bars in Tennessee are legally restaurants because in order to sell alcohol in the state of Tennessee an establishment must be a restaurant.

By: w00t on 6/18/09 at 1:24

rubixcube said:
"all bars in Tennessee are legally restaurants because in order to sell alcohol in the state of Tennessee an establishment must be a restaurant."

Wow, wrong again.
In TN, liquor licenses are given to establishments that don't serve food: "Liquor-By-the-Drink (LBD) licenses or On-Premise Consumption licenses may be issued to restaurants, hotels, private clubs and other establishments that are eligible under Tennessee law. An LBD or On-Premise Consumption license allows an establishment to sell and dispense alcoholic beverages that contain an alcoholic content greater than five percent (5%) by weight, for example, liquor, wine and high alcohol content beer."

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 1:36

In order to serve liquor or wine, you must be a restaurant. 1. A public place kept, used, maintained, advertised and held out to the public as a place where meals are served and where meals are actually and regularly served. 2. Without sleeping accommodations. 3. Supplied with adequate and sanitary kitchen and dining room equipment. 4. Seating capacity of at least seventy-five (75) at tables. 5. Employing a sufficient number and kind of employees to prepare, cook and serve suitable food. 6. Serve at least one (1) meal a day at least four (4) days a week. 7. Serving of meals shall be the principal business conducted You must make 51% of your revenue from food, be open at least 5 days, and have a real kitchen. If you do not, you cannot serve alcohol
BASIC RESTAURANT REQUIREMENTS (T.C.A. 57-4-102(19)(A))
otherwise it must be an of premises consumption license

By: w00t on 6/18/09 at 1:48

Oh my. Wrong again. Be careful, you might get a job at the City Paper if you keep giving misleading information like you did above.

You just gave the requirements for a RESTAURANT to serve LIQUOR; it DOES NOT mean you have to be a restaurant to serve liquor.

For those of you who can actually understand what you are reading, this Tennessee
Alcoholic Beverage Commission web page is where to start:
http://www.tennessee.gov/abc/llicensing%20-%20liquor%20by%20the%20drink.shtml

Taking from that website:
"Liquor-By-the-Drink (LBD) licenses or On-Premise Consumption licenses may be issued to restaurants, hotels, private clubs and other establishments..." Therefore, YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE A RESTAURANT TO SERVE LIQUOR!

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 1:52

http://www.tennessee.gov/abc/lbdother.shtml#Clubs:
i don't think any of the other licenses describe a bar bars aren't non profit organizations

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 1:56

so if you aren't a Club, Commercial Airline, Commercial Passenger Boat Company, Community Theater, Convention Center, Historic Interpretive Center, Historic Mansion, House Site Historic Performing Arts Center, Hotel, Museum, Passenger Train, Premiere Type Tourist Resort, Urban Park Center or Zoological Insitution than to sell alcohol you must be a restaurant

By: w00t on 6/18/09 at 1:59

Soooooooooooo, you were wrong.
I am glad you finally acknowledged it. It is the first step in recovery.

Now, go out and get some fresh air.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 1:59

clubs according to the state of Tennessee are non profit organizations like bell mead or hillwood country clubs

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 2:00

non of those things describe bars which under Tennessee law are restaurants

By: w00t on 6/18/09 at 2:13

Okay, my last comment. So, from here on out rubixcube, just because someone who thinks logically doesn't respond to your misleading posts, it doesn't mean you are correct (from what you have said so far, you should probably just consider yourself wrong every time).

The above exchange was only about liquor (which you had the incorrect position of "In order to serve liquor or wine, you must be a restaurant.").
Local Beer Boards govern beer and they do give licenses to places other than restaurants (just in case you didn't know, you can get intoxicated on beer too!)

Here is Davidson County's rules:
http://www.nashville.gov/beer_board/chapter7.08.htm

In several sections, the above rules point out that you don't have to be a restaurant to get a beer permit.

Done.

It is really nice to know that in a couple years, we will look back and realize that crime in and around restaurants has gone down. We will also know that all this "the sky is falling" talk was just scaremongering.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 2:19

my position was if you were a bar and wanted to serve liquor then you must be a restaurant. which many bars are. and the fact of the matter is that guns will be allowed in bars. and name one place where the bar just serves beer but serves no food. the bigger is for the gun laws there is no clear distinction between a restaurant and a bar, and that a gun owner will be allowed to bring a gun into a bar with this law.

By: rubixcube on 6/18/09 at 2:19

the bigger point

By: rledfordjr on 6/18/09 at 2:27

Now the restaurant owners will have to take a big business decision. They better be careful, last time I looked the number of Legal Permit Holders is on the upswing in the state of TN. If they take the wrong decision, it could put a big damper on their bottom line. With crime on the upswing in both Mid Town and East Nashville...they better choose wisely.

Wow, America is great! We can actually discuss our differences and work to stop over intrusive government and pansy business owners from ruining our lives.

Since I've started reading how business gets into bed with governments to protect their interests, I look at this whole debate from a purely pro 2nd amendment vantage point. I have no empathy/sympathy for business owners who want to protect their business through legislation; put your big girl panties on and take your decision and then live with the reward or consequence.

As for myself, the restaurant owners can take any decision they like. Then it is up to me whether I want to spend my money there. I LOVE THIS CONCEPT!

By: Gunstar1 on 6/19/09 at 4:33

rubixcube:
You have killed your own argument.

You posted that TN law will soon say you can only carry in a place that serves alcohol if that place is designated as a restaurant. A restaurant in TN is a place that serves at least 51% food. Carry is not allowed in any other place that serves alcohol in TN (hotels, airlines, etc) .

You also posted that both TX and GA allow people to carry in restaurants that serve alcohol if at least 51% is food. Except TX sign law, you can't carry into any place that serves alcohol unless it is a restaurant.

So how exactly is GA's law that allows carry where alcohol is served only in places that sell 51% food and TN law that says the exact same thing?

2 other states have laws exactly the same as TN new law... so how is it that TN new law is unprecedented?

By: rubixcube on 6/20/09 at 5:25

Tennessee doesn't give liquor licenses to bars all "bars" that sell liquor are restaurants in Tennessee this is undeniable fact. because Tennessee doesn't differentiate between these two it is the only place that explicitly states in the law that guns can go in Bars, believe me I've checked them all. GA and TX give non restaurant liquor licenses. 15 states allow guns in restaurants but not bars. 10 states don't allow guns in any restaurants 7 states leave it to localities to regulate the law(6 are may issue, NY only gives business carry) 2 states are no issue so you cant bring a gun anywhere 15 state just leave it out of the law so its implicitly allowed but common law can shut a bar down for being a nuisance and Tennessee is the only one that allows guns in bars explicitly, because it doesn't differentiate. in the original bill. Tennessee excluded places that card 21 and up but that was taken out this would have been fin with me, as i said before who goes to a bar and doesn't drink. i looked at that Washington case and it says that localities are allowed to shut down a bar even if its a licensed permit holder because of the possibility of a drunkard walking into the bar and seizing the weapon. this law takes away the right of a local government to use nuisance law as it would be able to if it were implicit like other states.

By: rubixcube on 6/20/09 at 5:30

if you look at the definitions those other places don't describe a bar the closest place is a restaurant followed by a non profit club so ALL BARS that serve liquor are restaurants.

By: rubixcube on 6/20/09 at 5:36

iowa one of the 15 that leaves it out of the law but doesnt allow carry in cities it says

724.4 Carrying weapons.

Except as otherwise provided in this section, a person who goes armed with a dangerous weapon concealed on or about the person, or who, within the limits of any city, goes armed with a pistol or revolver, or any loaded firearm of any kind, whether concealed or not, or who knowingly carries or transports in a vehicle a pistol or revolver, commits an aggravated misdemeanor.

By: rubixcube on 6/20/09 at 5:40

but that doesn't really pertain to the current argument