Columbia, SC — It’s bad enough that legislators are seriously considering allowing concealed weapons in restaurants and bars (S.308), but S.115 would abolish the concealed weapon permit. Can you imagine that anyone, with no training whatsoever, could carry a loaded weapon? So after they allow concealed weapons in restaurants and bars, are legislators also going to abolish the permit requirement?
Business owners must really think about their liability. What happens if someone is shot in their establishment? South Carolina doesn’t have a civil statute that holds the bar owner liable for injuries caused by a customer who was intoxicated when served, but the injured party can use the criminal statutes to sue. In 2010, the state Supreme Court upheld a $10 million verdict against The Getaway Lounge & Grill when it was determined that a patron’s intoxication resulted in a car crash that claimed his life and seriously injured a passenger in the car he struck.
Our legislators are not thinking through the ramifications of S.308. Are they positive that the “good guys” won’t have a drink or two before entering the bar? Are they positive the wait staff will ask all customers whether they are carrying a concealed weapon before serving them alcohol? And who is responsible if, God forbid, someone is shot?