The American way of guns: what’s next – the maternity ward?

It seems mass murderers here in the US, especially at schools, have become so commonplace that yesterday’s killing of six college students didn’t even make it to the front page in my paper.

When Columbine happened in 1999, it stunned us. The story dominated the news for weeks. Newspapers ran long biographies of those who died.

But that was then. Today, events like this have started to define us, even as the sickness of the lone gunman mowing down innocents for no reason or because of some paranoid delusion or perceived slight, begins to spread into other countries.

And our uniquely American logic dictates that we therefore must have more guns and be allowed to take them everywhere. So now, in my own State, the gun-loving land of the clinically insane, I am not even surprised by  this:

TAMPA — If Tampa’s proposed rules for the Republican National Convention are passed, protesters could not bring squirt guns into a designated protest zone.

But they could bring real guns if they have concealed weapons permits.

That’s because state law does not allow local governments to enact laws regulating guns, City Attorney Jim Shimberg Jr. said.

“Even if we tried to regulate it, it would be null and void,” Shimberg said Monday.

Not that the city didn’t consider it.

. . . “It was just kind of common sense,” Assistant City Attorney Mauricio Rodriguez said. “We felt if we’re going to regulate people carrying sticks and poles, why wouldn’t we regulate people carrying firearms, because those could pose significant risks to police and other protesters.”

But later, city attorneys removed the ban on guns after finding that Florida Statute 790.33 prohibits local governments from enacting any laws on the sale, purchase, transfer, taxation, manufacture, ownership, possession, storage or transportation of guns or ammunition.

Passed last year, the state law allows judgments of up to $100,000 against local governments that enforce local gun ordinances. It also says local officials could be removed from office and fined $5,000, with no representation from the city or county attorney.

There is, however, one place where guns won’t be allowed. That’s the convention itself, and it’s because the U.S. Secret Service has authority to make the rules inside the convention, which is scheduled for Aug. 27-30.

20 responses to “The American way of guns: what’s next – the maternity ward?

  1. I do not see the justice of incarcerating a person for simply owning a gun.

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    • Welcomme hammerhead . . . I don’t think anyone is being incarcerated for owning a gun. Did I miss something?

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      • Gun prohibition ultimately is the state using the threat of incarceration/violence to enforce what is really just “malum prohibitum” as opposed to a “mala in se” crime.

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        • First I thouhgt I had to dig out my old Latin books, but then . . . good old Google translate!

          So you’re saying the State if it passes gun laws says that it will punish those who break the law. Yeah, that’s pretty much how laws work. It’s why we have speed limits, isn’t it? For public safety? Or do you thiink we should not put limits on speed, but just punish the drivers who have the misfortune to hit someone else?

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          • Punish real crimes instead of creating new ones.

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          • How about punishing real crimes instead of creating new ones…

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          • That’s not analogous, Moe. Using the speed limit analogy, gun prohibitions are the equivalent of giving you a ticket because you own a car that could go over a posted speed limit.

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            • What I’m saying jonolan is that gov’t has an obligation to limit the use of things like cars and guns – to regulate how and where they can be used. It’s a matter of public safety. To allow ownership and use of both – within the guidelines laid down by governments.

              Unless of course, you deny that unrestricted gun use poses no dangers to society? Or it’s okay for cars to drive 100mph on local streets as long as they don’t damage or kill someone else. And even then the speeding itself wouldn’t be a crime, cuz there’s no law saying you can’t use a car that way?

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              • Again, Moe, you’re equating possession with inappropriate use.

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                • If you want to spllit hairs, that could be true, but gov’t has an obligaiton to put reasonable regulations onto social behaviors that threaten others. Requiring someone on the terrorist list to acquire guns? Selling to mental patients? To felons at gun shows, where it’s unregulated? None of those can be defined as ‘inappropriate use’ – that’s only possession.

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  2. Our gun laws are insane. And only in part because we let insane people carry them.

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  3. Hi there Moe. I don’t mean to upset your day, but – did you know that Florida has reciprocal agreements with 34 other states (as of December 2010)?

    That means that 2nd Amendment Patriots with concealed weapons permits (CWP) from their home state are welcome to pack heat in Florida. Most states only allow the concealed carry of firearms. Florida on the other hand:

    “For the purposes of this section (FS 790.06(1), concealed weapons or concealed firearms are defined as a handgun, electronic weapon or device, tear gas gun, knife, or billie, but the term does not include a machine gun.”

    The reciprocal agreements generally mean that you must follow the rules of the state you are visiting. Presumably, out-of -town visitors (including those from Alabama and Mississippi) to the RNC may carry a handgun, electronic weapon or device, tear gas gun, knife, and billie. The law doesn’t say you can’t carry all of these items.

    To leave on a positive note – brass knuckles and machine guns are not allowed to be carried by anyone.

    Oh yeah, almost forgot – It is not illegal to own a switchblade knife in Florida, but the knife must be purchased in the state and cannot cross state lines – coming or going (Federal law).

    Care for a stiff drink about now?

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    • Tear gas guns? Really? Tear gas guns?

      Hey JR, you going to be strolling by the convention center???

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      • You’re kidding, right?

        My bride and I haven’t decided whether we will even stay in the city during the Republican “Fiesta de los Locos” (official Tampa event). Besides, I am having trouble finding a tear gas gun big enough to be effective, yet small enough to conceal carry without looking like I am bragging.

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        • I left the previous post anonymously because I didn’t want the world to know about my tear gas gun.

          Either that, or I just plain screwed up.

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          • WP throws us off periodically and if I dont notice and don’t sign in my own comments go up as ‘annonymous’.

            I hear people are renting out their houses and apartments and taking off for a few days.

            Try Texas for any weapons you can’t find here.. . . :)

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  4. Would you believe NY is one of the states that does not have reciprocal agreements with Florida re guns…how weird is that?

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