Some Sanity in Florida Senate: Guns Won't Be Allowed on College Campuses

Categories: Politicks
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A few Republicans in the state legislator and the NRA wanted to push a law that would allow anyone with a concealed weapons license to carry their gun openly on public university campuses. Of course, guns and the atmosphere at Florida public universities don't really go together, as a tragic accidental shooting at an FSU frat party demonstrated. Now, language allowing guns on campus has been stripped from the bill.

Ashley Cowie was shot after a drunken FSU student began brandishing about an AK-47 at a party in Frat housing. She died in her twin sister's arms, and her father, Robert Cowie, offered tearful testimony against the bill.

Robert Cowie also happens to be the dentist and close friend of Senator John Thrasher, chairman of the Senate rules committee. He told the St. Pete Times he couldn't allow the bill to go forward with the language allowing guns on campus. He also said he had personally urged Ashley to attend FSU.

Republican Sen. Paula Dockery offered an amendment stripping the bill of language allowing guns on campus, and it was adopted with no objections.

Normally Florida Republicans, who control both houses of the legislature, readily bend over backwards to do whatever the NRA tells them, but it appears that Thrasher's connection to the tragedy, as well as public outcry, led to a rare defeat in Florida for the NRA.

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4 comments
Singlemother12
Singlemother12

I totally agree with your post this is very very good thing and I do favor to you that college students should not allow to keep guns themselves you are saying quite right.I like your post very much, Thank you for sharing such a nice post with us.

gun cabinets

Tired of these stupid laws
Tired of these stupid laws

I'm of a rare breed of (progressive) Democrats that believe in the First Amendment. As both a gun owner and a dog owner, I've told many people that there is no such thing as a dangerous dog, nor such thing as a dangerous gun --- there are only dangerous owners of the two.

The ban on Pit bulls (which happen to score better on AKC temperament tests than Golden Retrievers, Chihuahuas, and many other breeds considered to be "safe") here in Miami-Dade County is perfect example of reactionary legislation that serves no good for the public. As someone who works in animal rescue, mostly rehabilitating "dangerous breed" dogs, I've been bit four times. None of those times was by one of the dogs considered to be from the dangerous group (Pits, Rotties, Dobermans, German Shepherds). In addition, there are roughly 26 different breed variations often confused with the American Staffordshire Terrier, the true Pit bull. Wikipedia has a pretty well balanced article about them.

The reason I bring this up, is that because something has the potential to do harm, does not necessarily make its very existence a threat. A good example would be the TSA's restrictions on objects you can carry on a plane. Pocket-knives, nail files, a razor for your face, a knife, and liquids of any kind are required to be under a certain volume. Now, because these objects have the potential to "take down" an airplane, does that mean they should be banned altogether from society? Of course not.

Anyone who has ever had proper self-defense training knows that almost anything, including ones own hands or even a well sharpened pencil, can be employed as a lethal weapon. The power cable for your laptop that you are allowed to bring on a plane is durable enough to be used as a choke-wire.

More obvious is any form of motor vehicle. We allow people, even 16 year-old kids (and younger in some states) to get behind the controls of a tool that can result in mass death of its occupants, bikers, pedestrians, police officers or other motorists. All it takes is someone irresponsible behind the wheel (fatigued drivers who are more dangerous than drunk drivers, according to studies -- people distracted by a myriad of electronic devices or other occupants of their vehicle -- inexperienced (regardless of age, especially the young and the elderly) drivers who make mistakes and cause accidents -- OR criminals who attempt to evade police (this happens often) or drunk drivers who instantly becomes a threat to everyone around them. Even with all of this, no one is trying to ban cars altogether because they can be used as dangerous weapons.

So why do we chose to ban certain breeds of dogs and place heavy restrictions on guns? It is merely an attempt to take something with the potential to do great harm and forbid its ownership, in order to divert attention away from the real issue: evil people are going to do evil things, and irresponsible people are going to act irresponsibly. Criminals, by their very name, commit crime. They are breaking the law. Did laws banning guns on college campuses prevent a psychopath, whose name isn't even worth mentioning, from murdering over 30 people at Virginia Tech? Obviously not.

CCW holders, as DGO stated well in his/her post, have proven themselves to be law abiding citizens who are RESPONSIBLE gun owners. Convicted felons, those convicted of drug misdemeanors, and a whole slew of other potential threats of criminal/irresponsible nature ARE NOT allowed to apply for this license. I know that had I been in one of buildings at Virginia Tech (I graduated from UM a year after the shootings), and had been allowed to carry my weapon, I could have made a very strong attempt, by relying on my proficiency with a firearm, to eliminate that murderer and prevent the loss of more innocent lives.

Again, as DGO stated, we can already carry our guns into banks and even without a permit you can keep a firearm in your home, place of business or car, so long as it is properly secured. What difference is it going to make?

DGO
DGO

Interesting. Too bad that you've added a lot that just wasn't there.

See, the bill is a "No Big Deal," bill because concealed carry holders have proven themselves to be law abiding, honorable and reliable in every aspect since CCW was approved years ago. This bill will make it easier to carry and remove a problem that every concealed carrier encounters - accidental exposure of the firearm - and a possible felony conviction (Dam that top shelf library book!)

But lets address some issues you raised in your article.

1. A person with a CCW is over 21, has a track record of responsibility, and has proven that they can carry in banks, race tracks, and even in the bathroom with no problems. But for some reason, that same person is suddenly a monster gun killer when he walks into a classroom? Get real.

2. Removing this provision will do nothing but create the barrel of fish that the next murderer intent on racking up a body count will know to go shoot into. A whole campus of nice safe targets. Removing this provision will get people killed, eventually.

3. Mr. Cowie, a nice guy who is angry at the death of his daughter, and rightly so, is spending his efforts in the wrong direction! Instead of going after people that had nothing to do with his daughters death, he should be going after the people who did have something to do with it... i.e. the Brady Campaign. See, the young man that shot the AK was not trained in how to properly handle a firearm. That is because the gun training classes and similar things were deemed "Dangerous," by the Brady Campaign, and have been protested out of existence. So the little girl that died, would NOT have died, had someone in the room had firearms training and said the magic words, "Hey man, is that thing loaded? Let me check and make sure." Those words come from training and responsibility - the very things taught in gun classes.

So not only has sanity not been restored, people may die because one man was too broken up to see that he's lashing out at the wrong people and one representative was too short sighted to act with common sense.

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