Optimistic Students Lobby for FL Gun Control

One hundred Stoneman Douglas High School students are busing 400 miles to Florida’s capital Tuesday to lobby for action to prevent a repeat of the massacre that killed 17 students and faculty last week. The students plan to put pressure on the state’s Republican-controlled legislature to consider a sweeping package of gun-control laws, something some GOP lawmakers said they would consider.

A hundred Stoneman Douglas High School students are busing 400 miles to Florida’s capital Tuesday to lobby for action to prevent a repeat of the massacre that killed 17 students and faculty last week, the Associated Press reports. The students plan to rally Wednesday in hopes that it will put pressure on the state’s Republican-controlled legislature to consider a sweeping package of gun-control laws, something some GOP lawmakers said they would consider. After the shooting, legislative leaders were taken on a tour of the school to see the damage firsthand and they appeared shaken afterward. “I really think they are going to hear us out,” said Chris Grady, a 19-year-old senior who is going on the trip. He said he hopes the trip will lead to some “commonsense laws like rigorous background checks.”

The attack last Wednesday seemed to overcome the resistance of some in the state’s leadership, which has rebuffed gun restrictions since Republicans took control of both the governor’s office and the legislature in 1999. However, there is still strong resistance by many in the party to any gun-control measures, leaving the fate of new restrictions unclear. Sen. Bill Galvano, a Republican and the incoming Florida Senate president, said the Senate was preparing a package that would include raising the age to purchase any firearm to 21, creating a waiting period for purchasing any type of firearm, banning bump stocks that can allow semi-automatic guns to spray bullets quickly and creating gun-violence restraining orders. “We need to make sure everything is working and to learn from the experience,” said Galvano. The Senate is considering boosting spending on mental health programs for schools and giving police more power to involuntarily hold someone considered a danger to themselves.

from https://thecrimereport.org