New Louisiana gun laws prompt public discussions

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Louisiana is traditionally one of the most pro-gun rights states in the nation and because Gov. Bobby Jindal just signed them, several more gun laws will soon be in effect, but they could generate plenty of public opinion on both sides of the fence.

Sylicea Douglas supports a new law that will soon prohibit those in Louisiana convicted of domestic abuse from legally owning a gun for 10 years.

"If you can't control your rage with your hands, I know you can't control your rage with a gun," said Douglas.

State lawmakers, like Sen. Sharon Weston Broome, D-Baton Rouge, agree with that mindset. Broome is hopeful the measure will prevent crimes in a state that rates the highest in the nation in domestic abuse cases against women.

"Domestic abuse, unfortunately, domestic violence has sky-rocketed in Louisiana and this bill is going to be very important for the safety of women and children," said Broome.

Another bill that will soon become law gives concealed carry permit holders and law enforcement officers the right to take guns into restaurants that don't earn more than 60 percent sales from alcohol. Dana Barton said she realizes gun rights are big in Louisiana but doesn't understand the need for the law.

"I'm thinking why would they need to carry it in there anyway; you know, into a restaurant," said Barton.

Steve Barns is a concealed carry permits holder and points out the law will still make it illegal for a permit holder to have a blood alcohol level of .05 or higher while carrying a gun. Barns added those who have concealed carry permits have earned the right by passing a handful of stringent background checks.

"It's not an easy process, so I don't have a problem that are certified concealed carry permit holders bringing a gun into a restaurant, no," said Barns.

The gun measures signed by Jindal received overwhelming support on both sides of the state legislature and will go into effect as laws beginning August 1.

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