It was only a matter of time before gun violence erupted in Cobb County. The crime scene was once again in Kennesaw where, as it happens, local State Rep. Charles Gregory has made "gun freedom" his calling card during an otherwise unremarkable first term in Georgia legislature.
Recall it was just four years ago Jesse James Warren shot and killed three people and seriously wounded two others at the Penske truck rental center on Barrett Lakes Boulevard in Kennesaw.
Instead of considering what that hometown horror represented, the three lives destroyed and what might be done to prevent more gun violence, Gregory doubled down.
Let's put guns in churches, guns in bars and restaurants, guns on university campuses, guns here, guns there and guns everywhere, said Gregory when he ran for the Georgia House in 2012.
So what did you Kennesaw voters expect would happen if Rep. Gregory got his way?
Just a mile or so from the site of the Penske atrocity, another shooter, went on a bloody rampage, according to police, wounding six workers, two seriously, before killing himself at the FexEx facility near McCollum Field.
Such heinous acts and the public outrage that ensues aren't a time for reflection, says Gregory; it's not a time to discuss how to end the gun violence epidemic in America.
No when we have mass shootings,Gregory told the MDJ's Jon Gillooly after the massacre of 20 small children and six of their teachers in Newtown, Conn., it's an opportunity for the government to impose more restrictions on gun owners.
“People need to stand up for these liberties right now,” Gregory said in December, 2012, without so much as mentioning the slaughtered babies in Newtown, whose parents and siblings will live with the horrific memory of their little ones shot to pieces by Adam Lanza's assault rifle, the one his "responsible" gun owner mother kept unsecured in her home even though she knew her son was deranged.
To Gregory, who is blessed with three small children all presumably alive and well, the right to carry guns anywhere without restrictions of any kind trumps the right of Newtown, Kennesaw and all other gun violence victims' to live their lives.
Evidently Gregory believes the body count, the permanent injuries, the shattered lives, and the psychological trauma is the price every American must pay for "liberty" whether we own guns or not.
"(I)t’s fighting tooth and nail to get any small bit of liberty back in this country because for the entire history of our country since the beginning it’s been erosion of our liberties," Gregory went on, "and people do need to stand up in defense of those liberties, and also beyond that from a practical standpoint the argument of gun control is just not true, it’s a fallacy."
Oh yeah, Charlie? Call me when you visit the victims shot Tuesday morning. I want to tag along and see how that message is received by those who, unlike you, have actually taken a bullet.
Gregory isn't even original. He merely spouts paranoid, irresponsible National Rifle Association garbage in his bid to get back to the state capitol, transparently pandering to the NRA crowd knowing if he clings to Wayne LaPierre's trouser leg just enough Kennesaw gun lovers will show up at the polls to vote for him.
What a cynical ploy to get yourself elected to a lowly political post.
I wrote about Michael Bloomberg's Everytown for Gun Safety in my weekly column last Friday. With two mass shootings now, Kennesaw clearly needs to become one of those towns.