I have read much on both sides of the proposed amendment to Floirda's Constitution to ban "so-called" assault weapons. Full disclosure, I am a advocate for all civil rights in the United States and Florida Constitution.
It is with this mindset I frame this argument. I have read the mission statement of BAWN, Ban Assault Weapons Now, and find it is filled with platitudes such as; they want to place a initiative on the ballot that our elected leaders refuse to do; the NRA and gun manufactures hold sway over politicians; and, the numbers are on their side.
Florida's elected leaders have brought up this kind of legislation the last three years and in 2018 right after the Pulse Nightclub incident and did not pass it. If BAWN has actual proof that Florida politicians are being bribed they should notify FDLE. And if BAWN have the numbers on their side it would be nice to publish the data sets proving their assertions.
Reading of the proposed amendment demonstrates the lack of knowledge these people who hate firearms will go to take away your civil rights. It uses arbitrary language to define what an assault weapon really is. It would ban the most widely owned long gun in America and virtually every long gun, rifle or shotgun, except single shot firearms. It would not restrict the firearm used in a vast majority of crimes and murders, the handgun. It violates the Firearms Act of 1986 by creating a firearms registry in Florida. It also instantly creates felons out of law-abiding citizens who do not register their legally obtained firearms by a certain date. And as we have seen in Canada, Australia and New Zealand gun registrations are costly and in-effectual.
Some of the people in BAWN have had personal experiences that involve firearms in a negative way and they have a right to their feelings, but, the number of citizens in Florida who have had positive experience far outnumbers them. I am not trying to minimize them or their feelings, but feelings do not trump civil rights.
Legislation or laws like these penalize only the law abiding citizens, they will do nothing to stop someone intent on doing harm from doing so. You cannot legislate criminality, if you could there would be no crime. I would entertain the idea of debating anyone from the BAWN organization and urge all readers to inform themselves of this important issue and make their own informed decision. I also ask that you inform as many voters of the attempt to take away our civil rights and right to self-defense.