More guns - fewer problems?

There were plenty of guns on display at the Albany Gun and Knife show on June 9th and 10th.

/ Ashley Knight

When you think of guns, there's a good chance the word violence comes to mind - but at the Albany Gun and Knife show vendors say there is much more to firearms than the bad.

"It isn't the gun that is actually the bad part, it's the person that's actually behind the gun. A gun doesn't just go off, it has to have an operator just like any other machine, anything like that," said Michael Frazier, who owns a gun shop in Cartersville with his brother.

There were over 180 tables at the show on June 9th and 10th presenting firearms from large shotguns to pink handheld guns geared for women - and gun owners say allowing the public to purchase and own a firearm often has a positive result.

"Any state that's incorporated a positive gun law and allowed citizens to own guns, and the Supreme Court just ruled on that recently and said stop infringing on these citizen's rights, the crime rate goes down," said Clint Segrest, a vendor and gun owner at the show.

Towns like Kennesaw - who mandate that every citizen must own a gun - have seen the direct result of this.

"It has slashed 85% in the last year," said Frazier.

But these owners also see the possible downside to allowing a citizen to openly carry a weapon.

"It's a catch 22 as well, the way I see it. You can open carry, open and conceal carry to where you can carry your firearm outside, then it makes you a target. Well, if he's got a gun, I can try him. He's trouble," said Frazier.

However, the majority of owners who collect guns collect for a hobby, and vendors like Anthony Battista say it encourages people to behave with them so they aren't taken away. While guns have the ability to kill people, they also have the power to do just the opposite.

"Guns save lives," said Segrest.

"I would prefer everyone to own a gun. It would be a happier, calmer society," said Frazier.

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