By: José Niño
If anyone thinks passing Constitutional Carry in Florida will be a walk in the park, they would be wrong.
To be sure, Republicans are in firm control of all branches of government — the Governor’s Mansion, State House (78-42), and State Senate (24-15); however, that’s no guarantee that Republicans will automatically pass Constitutional Carry – the law that says law-abiding Americans don’t have to ask the government’s permission before exercising their Second Amendment rights.
Many Republicans prefer not to rock the boat and just let the status quo stay intact. Take for example Florida State Rep. Michelle Salzman. Pro-Second Amendment constituents recently confronted her about supporting Florida’s Constitutional Carry bill, HB 103.
In this exchange, which the National Association for Gun Rights was able to provide video footage of on YouTube, Salzman said Constitutional Carry is “extremely important to me,” though she claimed that it’s “not the right time.”
Salzman tried to rationalize this assertion by noting that the current Florida political leadership class is the same one that presided over the passage of SB 7026 following the Parkland Massacre of 2018. This bill established a bump stock ban, an increase in the age to buy a firearm, and a red flag gun confiscation order. Salzman stressed that she wouldn’t “do anything to poke that bear” and get on bad terms with political leadership.
While Salzman is correct in observing that Florida’s political leadership is not exactly pro-Second Amendment, doing nothing is not an option. Elected officials are entrusted to carry out the will of their constituents. In Florida, there are many pro-Second Amendment constituents who are clamoring for the passage of Constitutional Carry. If Salzman and similar-minded representatives had an ounce of courage, they would carry out the will of their constituents.
Ultimately, this goes to show that politicians cannot be fully trusted to carry out grassroots conservatives’ most pressing demands. They will offer every excuse under the sun to justify their legislative inaction. In light of this, it will take grassroots activism to make sure Florida legislators get the message and finally act on Constitutional Carry.
Expecting politicians to take initiative and magically restore people’s freedoms is the height of naïveté.