NRA sues State of Florida over just-passed school safety law

Ebony Scott
March 12, 2018

The National Rifle Association filed a lawsuit against the new law in federal court nearly immediately after it was signed, contending the bill's ban on gun sales to those under 21 was a violation of the Second Amendment.

Scott wants more school resource officers instead of teachers with guns.

Governor Scott, who said he is an NRA member and will continue to be one, said he is still "not persuaded" about the guardian program that will let districts authorise staff members to carry handguns if they complete law enforcement training.

Implementing a "suspicious activity reporting tool that allows students and the community to relay information anonymously concerning unsafe, potentially harmful, dangerous, violent, or criminal activities, or the threat of these activities, to appropriate public safety agencies and school officials".

But according to the Tampa Bay Times, the state's largest school districts do not seem to be amenable to the idea of arming educators.

In previous litigation elsewhere in the nation, Cooper & Kirk litigated on behalf of the NRA to have the federal law that requires a handgun purchaser to be 21-years-old declared illegal under the Second Amendment, arguing that the age of 18 is required by the Constitution.

Seventeen people were killed at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School when the 19-year-old former student Nikolas Cruz, opened fire with a semi-automatic military-style rifle.

The National Rifle Association has given more than $7 million in grants to hundreds of US schools in recent years, according to an Associated Press analysis, but few have shown any indication that they'll follow the lead of businesses that are cutting ties with the group following last month's massacre at a Florida high school. Scott's office announced that the Republican governor will sign both bills on Sunday. "I'm on a mission to make sure I'm the last dad to ever read a statement of this kind".

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Florida legislators, however, were feeling the pressure from student activists begging them to take action in the wake of the February 14 mass shooting in Parkland, Florida.

It also makes it easier for law enforcement and judges to remove guns from people considered a danger to themselves or others, and it establishes a new program to arm some school personnel, along with hundreds of millions of dollars in new spending on school security and mental health treatments.

Florida is one of the most permissive states in the country for gun purchasers.

'By signing this bill, Governor Scott has demonstrated that the support of gun owners is not important to him.'

The bill narrowly passed the Florida House and Senate.

Student activists from the school, who followed the bill's progress closely, called it "a baby step".

She said she wants Gov. Rick Scott to veto the money for the so-called guardian program when he receives the budget. "And there's a bill before us that is not flawless", she said.

"[The NRA] wanted this bill to fail because they know that if we leave here with gun control, this will be a wind behind the sails of those kids as they march into Washington, D.C.", said Rep. Jared Moskowitz, D-Coral Springs, a graduate of Stoneman Douglas.

Other reports by GizPress

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