Florida’s campus carry bill (SB 176) passed out of the state senate’s Republican-dominated Criminal Justice Committee yesterday, but not before an opponent said something stupid. “Sen. Audrey Gibson, D-Jacksonville, argued that the proposal would allow ‘mini-militias’ to form on the state’s campuses’,” miami.cbslocal.com reports. OMG! Mini-militias! Of course that wasn’t the dumbest thing said by Sunshine Staters seeking to maintain higher education institutions as gun-free zones. College faculty members spoke out in opposition to the measure, too . . .
Marjorie Sanfilippo, a professor of psychology at Eckerd College, called the bill dangerous.
“It is mere speculation and ignorance of statistical probability to assert that armed students are the reason why shootings don’t happen on campuses,” Sanfilippo told the committee. “Proponents will tell you that allowing conceal carry will protect female students from sexual assault. I will point out the obvious; you’ll be arming the assailants, too.”
Arming assailants? Is Professor Sanfillippo seriously suggesting that assailants aren’t arming themselves because of the college campus concealed carry ban? That its repeal would lead them to tool-up? As that commercial says, that’s not this works. That’s not how any of this works. Anyway . . .
The Senate Criminal Justice Committee on Monday also voted 4-1, with Gibson opposed, on a measure (SB 290) that would allow gun owners without concealed-weapons licenses to legally carry their guns when an emergency evacuation order is given.
Last year, a similar measure failed to pass after heavy floor debate on the second-to-last day of the legislative session. However, this time the proposal has the support of the Florida Sheriffs Association, which opposed the 2014 version.
The change in the sheriffs association’s position came as Sen. Jeff Brandes, a St. Petersburg Republican who is sponsoring the bill, added a timeline Monday to this year’s proposal. The timeline would set a 48-hour window for individuals to carry weapons while they get away from an evacuation zone once the order is given.
The governor could extend the order by an additional 48 hours, under the proposal.
Let me see if I’ve got this straight . . .
Under the bill, Floridians can exercise their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms without a license (but not openly) for 48 hours if they live in an evacuation zone and they’re being evacuated under a mandatory evacuation order. But only if they aren’t legally prohibited from possessing a firearm and only carrying a concealed handgun or guns and only for two days – unless the Governor gives citizens another two days’ (but not a minute more) grace.
So what if you can’t get back in your home within two (or maybe four) days? Or live outside an evacuation zone during a period of lawlessness? Evacuated citizens can carry in these non-evacuation zone “hot spots” without a permit but not residents? And what about the gun ban in emergency shelters? Or the fact that open carry is a HUGE deterrent when law enforcement breaks down, as is possible after an event like a hurricane?
This is what happens when you don’t have Constitutional Carry. Still. Who in their right mind wouldn’t tool-up during an emergency situation, regardless of the law? Laws. Can’t live with them, can’t live without them. Can you?