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Much is changed in what was formerly known as The Gunshine State since Parkland. Republican Governor Rick Scott signed a new gun control bill into law that raises the minimum age to buy a long gun to 21, outlaws bump fire stocks, establishes “extreme risk” protection orders and imposes a three-day waiting period on long gun purchases.

The post-Parkland flurry has also emboldened a number of Florida cities and counties to mount a challenge to the state’s preemption law. If successful, the cities would be free to enact their own, more restrictive gun control laws (think “assault weapons” bans, 10-day waiting periods, etc.) that would re-create the hodgepodge of laws that plagued the state — and legal gun owners — before the preemption bill was signed into law.

Take, for example, Leon County, which is home to Tallahassee, the state capitol. County commissioners this week decided to impose universal background checks and a waiting period to address the mythical “gun show loophole.”

After a marathon public hearing featuring passionate speakers on both sides of the gun control debate, Leon County commissioners signed off on a new ordinance designed to close the so-called gun show loophole for background checks.

The measure requires background checks and a three-day waiting period for private gun sales on publicly accessible property, including gun shows, estate sales and garage sales. Commissioners approved it in a late night 6-1 vote, with Bryan Desloge, the lone Republican on the board, casting the only no vote.

Never mind that no mass shooter in history has ever been shown to have acquired firearms at a gun show. Commissioners saw an opportunity to strike while the gun control iron was hot.

Hold on, though. Florida’s preemption law carries stiff penalties for cities and counties that decide to flout it. Any mayor or county commissioner who knowingly violates the law can be fined $5000 and removed from office. Weren’t they worried about the potential consequences?

A 2011 state statute passed by the GOP-controlled Legislature and signed by Gov. Rick Scott preempts counties from enacting their own gun control regulations. However, a constitutional amendment approved by voters in 1998 allows counties to require both background checks and waiting periods between three and five days.

Attendees at the marathon hearing pointed out the burden the law would place on law-abiding citizens . . .

“What you’re about to pass — all it’s going to do is inconvenience a few people that want to buy guns,” said Charlie Strickland, a former Leon County deputy and co-owner of Talon Range. “It’s not going to do anything else. It’s not going to make it any harder for criminals. It’s not going to make it any harder for someone who wants to kill themselves, unfortunately.”

The effect: nada.


NRA lobbyist Marion Hammer was due to attend the hearing to make the case against the proposed restrictions. But she was forced to stay away due to the number and severity of the death threats she received if she decided to attend.

“The death threats come with the job,” she said in a Sunday email. “I’ve dealt with it for many, many years. But it is so ugly this time NRA is insisting that I listen to my security advisers. It always amazes me how these people who claim to want to stop violence are so quick to threaten violence. I have never been afraid of them but it really makes me angry when they threaten my family.”

These are the same people who preach open-mindedness and tolerance. Not that anything Hammer was likely to say would have swayed the six commissioners who were bound and determined to do something to show their concern over gun violence. They saw an opportunity and the took it. Look for more of the same coming to other Florida jurisdictions soon.


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  1. Their next step is to nullify the preemption statute all together. Anti-gun politicians around the state, bolstered by support from Bloomberg/Soros apparatchiks have initiated lawsuits to that effect.

    • “Never mind that no mass shooter in history has ever been shown to have acquired firearms at a gun show. “

      Stop being so weak kneed with the Second Ammendment Dan. Your logic opens the door to infringing laws if, in this case, a mass shooter is found to have purchased a gun at a gun show.

      Grow a spine Dan. Shall not means shall not. There’s no If-Then statement in the Second.

      • “Never mind that no mass shooter in history has ever been shown to have acquired firearms at a gun show”

        Not true.. I believe Columbine qualifies as a mass shooting. E.K. obtained a weapon that was bought by his then 18 year old girlfriend (he was 17) at a gun show. She was obviously a straw buyer but was never prosecuted for the purchase.

  2. I wonder who will care come election day? Will it matter one way or the other? I suspect there will be much forgetfulness or outright apathy among the electorate and no elected officials will be held accountable.

    • Unfortunately, Tallahassee, despite being surrounded by rural conservative counties and voters, is a bastion of “progressive” liberal socialists. Two universities, Florida State (ultra-liberal leanings) and Florida A&M (a Historically Black College/University – HBCU – yes, that’s a real designation), spread the “progressive” agenda to the max. Hence the city commission vote this week. There likely will be absolutely no political fallout from this vote.

      • Sorry, that should have been “county” commission vote, although the city commission isn’t any better.

  3. British comedian did an act about 40 years ago sending up all extremists. I can always remember the line “and kill everyone who disagrees with us”. Never ceases to amaze me how violent “peaceful” protesters are.

    As stated no mass shooter then went on a spree as they left the shop. They planned for maximum effect. The few exceptions killed someone for their firearms – Lanza killed his mother, Bryant in Australia stabbed a family friend. But politicians and antis don’t like facts only “feelings”.

  4. Leon County is only 22 miles wide where it’s bisected by I-10. Not that you should have to, but “freedom” is only 15 minutes in either direction.

    • Yep, and literally right across the line in the county on the western border of Leon at I-10, there’s a gun range where Leon Countians will be making their new county ordnance private sales loophole transfers and can even shoot them there.

    • “Not that you should have to, but “freedom” is only 15 minutes in either direction.”

      Matt, they are planning to gather the signatures and place an ‘assault weapon’ ban and ‘universal background check’ on the next ballot.

      They will likely get the ballot votes to enact just that…

        • “I believe that AWB ballot was voted down already.”

          Florida medical marijuana narrowly lost the first time it showed up as a ballot initiative.

          It passed the next time around…

  5. Leon County is a strange place in an otherwise conservative area. I know the guys that own Talon, well J.D. anyway. He’s from Gadsden County. Worked with a lot of guys from Tallahassee P.D./Leon S.O. They have little, or nothing in common with the morons on the Tallahassee City Commission, or Leon County Board of Commissioners. I think it’s just that liberals are drawn to the seat of government like moths to a flame. After all, most of them have never actually had to punch a time clock. Or, kick in a door and chase in a 1911 behind it. But there I go again, confusing the issue with facts.

  6. That pic is of Mary Ann Lindly [sic]. She used to write for the Tallahassee Democrat. (Need I say more.) I remember when she wasn’t allowed into a restaurant because she was wearing jeans. Seems there was a dress code. It turned into a, “Don’t you know who I am?” kind of thing. Even wrote about it in her column. Some people are just more special than others.

  7. The measure requires background checks and a three-day waiting period for private gun sales on publicly accessible property, including gun shows, estate sales and garage sales. I can’t conceive a garage sale or estate sale ban. Yes, the property is publically accessible, but I’ll be damned if I let an anti-gun butthole onto my driveway or in my estate on my ‘private property’ to purchase something. I hear one anti-2nd amendment opinion, and they’re outa there. (and how do they plan on ‘enforcing’ this?)

    • George, you make a very good point. The gun show at the fair grounds may be public property. With their admission fees and what have you, but there is nothing public about my front yard. Anyone there is there at my pleasure. It is not public property.

    • How does a garage sale do a three day waiting period anyway. “It is Saturday, come back Wednesday to get your weapon!” Do garage sales have to have an FFL now? Can I call into FDLE for a garage sale background check?

      Does anyone have gun garage sales? I sure haven’t seen one. The thought crossed my mind the other day when we had a garage sale of hey, I guess I could sell guns… But then someone will be offering $5 for your guns or ammo, not worth it, gun broker or forum sales.

    • According to the numbskulls on the commission, including their attorney, in places like garage sales and other private property locations that invite the general public in, enforcement will be complaint driven. Have a garage sale that includes guns? Your nosy prick of a neighbor could call the county code enforcement office, which will have initial “investigative” responsibilities. A code enforcement officer would come out and do whatever they’re going to do to ensure compliance. Non-compliant persons (buyer? seller? who knows?) would then be referred to the Sheriff’s Office. It’s all a bunch of hooey that, in the end, will not be enforced, just as it isn’t enforced in counties that already have the same requirements. To comply, an individual who wants to sell a gun to another individual would have to go through a FFL holder, who would have to put the gun on their books, hold it for the 3 days, then make the transfer after doing the background check. There are a number of other issues that are still unclear about implementation/enforcement. Nobody is going to comply with this. They’re going to do the deal anyway, either in their back yard, across the county line, or wherever they do it now, i.e., Wal Mart/McDonald’s/Circle K/wherever parking lots. Did I say that nobody is going to comply with this?

  8. We say we are law abiding citizens.

    They say yeah, until you’re not.

    We put laws in place to prevent exactly this kind of thing.

    They break the law.

    Just one more thing on the list of leftists and their projection issues.

  9. There’s an upside to the liberal stampede to ever more coercive anti-gun laws. Now that they’re openly backing everything up to and including outright gun confiscation, they no longer have the luxury of pretending to support the 2nd amendment or claiming that they just want “commonsense” gun regulation. They never really believed any of this twaddle only now they have to admit it—during an election year. Americans don’t like the idea of cops taking private property, be it guns or anything else. Nor do Americans like to hear claims that parts of our constitution are no longer “relevant” and must be changed.

    There are still third-rail issues in American politics that can cause instant political death. Confiscation of private property and messin’ with the US Constitution are two perfect examples. The gun-controllers have handed conservative republicans a couple of prime campaign issues.

    • Garrison, you’re right. I’m retired now but I, and a lot of the guys I worked with, said they would never attempt to confiscate firearms from an otherwise law abiding citizen. Same thing when I was in the army. In fact, most expressed the opinion that they would turn their weapons on those ordering them to do so first. Those asswipes should think about that.

      • It goes without question that the leftists are playing with matches over an open powder keg. They are mistaken if they think they can use their deep state operatives or operatives in the judiciary or unlawful manipulation of legal process to usurp the Constitution without severe consequences. Let’s just hope they come to their senses before striking that one match that will ignite the powder.

      • Paul M ….. This is the reason they want non citizens in military, no alegence to the constitution or bill of rights.

  10. “NRA lobbyist Marion Hammer was due to attend the hearing to make the case against the proposed restrictions. But she was forced to stay away due to the number and severity of the death threats she received if she decided to attend.”

    Oh look! Her first EXCUSED absence as a member of the NRA!

    • Disappointed in her. She should have gone to the hearing. With no security. Despise a coward.

    • Oh big talk from the panty wetting crowd calling out a 78yr old woman. Who CERTAINLY has done more for the 2nd than most anyone you could name. Got your asses in route to Fl to take charge do you?

      • I agree that Marion Hammer has done a lot for firearms rights Florida. Still she should have gone to these hearings. If you’re afraid, and I’ve been plenty scared before, stay home and give it to someone else. When I was afraid I took a deep breath and kicked in the door. And trusted the guys behind me.

      • Neiowa, my father is 89 and in a wheelchair. He has never been a coward. He keeps a 3″ round butt Smith #65 handy every day. It’s stamped N.Y.S.P. How funny is that? Hammer should have gone to the hearing. No excuses. I’ve been a L.E.O. firearms instructor for 20÷ years. It’s that kind of behavior that caused me to drop my NRA membership.

        • It is difficult to believe that an NRA spokesperson was kept away from a public meeting due to threats. For one, I’d think that there is some communication between NRA and federal and state LE regarding such things and the veracity of them. Further, if threats of violence are enough to keep our voices at home and unheard, we are truly lost. And, finally, if NRA had sent out a request, say in one of its email blasts, requesting a volunteer security detail for Hammer so that she could attend these meetings I suspect they would have had on hand a unit of light riflemen and irregulars more numerous than the state police, if not the Florida National Guard. If our reaction to threats at public meetings is to stay away and not be heard we should just stop bothering altogether and simply comply with whatever the antis cook up, because we are going to face these threats at every single turn. Also, why do we have all these damn guns, armor and accessories?

          I get that requesting what amounts to an armed posse has it’s downsides, but then, so does responding to threats by appeasement. If it ruffles feathers, GOOD! Let the public know that their are real and credible threats of violence against a citizens organization attempting to protect and further a civil right. Also, the mobilization has it’s own merits from a readiness standpoint, and besides, a massive show of force has advantages of it’s own. The gloves have been off for quite a while on the left, and it’s past time to at least switch from 16oz boxing gloves to 5oz MMA gloves on the right.

          Or. . . could it be that there is some other reason Hammer isn’t doing this? Connect the dots, because I’m not buying the threat card, and even if I did, I’d still be embarrassed, and deeply concerned, by this incident.

  11. Bet the leaders of Leon county live in safe communities and enjoy protection the serfs do not.

    • Our oranges are fine. As are our Randall Made Knives, gag grouper, shall issue CCW laws, stand your ground laws, (we were among the first to pass both), no state income tax, pretty good weather most of the year, good hunting, great fishing, (fresh water, surf, inshore and offshore) more than a few nice looking young ladies around. Yeah, we’ve got a few asshole politicians. Who doesn’t?

      Ironicatbrst, I don’t know where you’re from, but please stay there.

  12. the point of gun control has nothing to do with crime
    Fighting them with appeals to the logic of crime control does nothing
    They want the citizens disarmed so they can be controlled
    Crime has nothing to do with it
    We have to fight them on the freedom from control issue

  13. This is being pushed by a liberal college town surrounded by Baja Georgia. Besides certain parts of Tallahassee, that entire area is backwoods, pickup trucks and the gun toting South.

  14. I lived in Tallahassee and worked at Leon County SO…Charlie Strickland was one of my FTOs and a solid, reliable and professional guy. For all the Republicans that hold state offices, you won’t find hardly ANY holding any elected or appointed county or city position in Leon County. We had solid Sheriffs in the past, who were gun rights supporting, common sense if not eccentric life long Democrats, but that time is long gone. You wanna make a living in Leon county, you better keep your gun-supporting ways under wraps. Pathetic. Wanna see an example of political hypocrisy in action? Look into how much effort the city/county policy makers and the FSU suits put into quashing the stas on campus crime to ensure a feeling of ease to parents of potential. Can’t have those pesky robbery and rape statistics scaring away all that prospective revenue.

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