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03/06/2015 14:24 BST | Updated 03/06/2015 23:59 BST

Jim Cooley Walks Around Atlanta Airport With An AR-15 And 100 Rounds Because 'Something Might Happen'

"Did you pack everything for the airport, dear? Passport? Toiletries? Cartridge magazine-fed, air-cooled rifle with rotating lock bolt?"

Jim Cooley of Georgia took his daughter to Atlanta Airport on Tuesday, bidding her farewell with a loaded AR-15. Why? Because “something might happen,” he said (a full-scale alien invasion, judging by the 100-round drum attached).

jim cooley

'O say can you see, by the dawn's early light...'

Cooley was taking advantage of the state’s open-carry laws, which allow him to strut around the airport with the firearm, though he later told the media he was stopped several times local authorities. Writing on his Facebook page after the incident, Cooley reasoned: “It shouldn’t matter what I carry, just that I choose to carry. You never know where something might happen.”

According to RawStory, when questioned by a reporter as to whether it might be alarming for travelers to see a man with a huge loaded gun strapped to his shoulder, Cooley said: “If you don’t exercise your rights, the government doesn’t have any hesitation taking them away.”

Earlier this week, Vince Vaughn gave an interview to GQ in which the actor said the right to keep and bear arms was necessary not “because of burglars” but so that citizens could “resist the supreme power of a corrupt and abusive government.

Recent Pew polls show an increase in the popularity of gun rights in the US. In research published last December, 57 percent of adult respondents said guns “protect people from becoming crime victims.” Only 38 percent said guns “put people’s safety at risk."

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