Few bills have been subjected to more myths and misconceptions than Rep. Greg Steube’s campus-carry legislation, which he recently re-introduced.
Opponents act as though the three-term state rep will be handing out Glocks during freshman orientation.
Mike Young and I invited the Sarasota Republican to a special edition of The Gun Writer TV, to explain his reasons for the legislation — his legislative intent.
For Steube, it’s about making sure that concealed-carry licensees are not stripped of their right to self defense, and removing another gun-free zone, which are magnets for trouble.
While his bill has garnered some opposition, it’s received even stronger support.
Marion Hammer, executive director of the Unified Sportsmen of Florida and a past president of the National Rifle Association, strongly supports the campus-carry legislation.
“A gun-free Campus creates a Sanctuary campus and safe haven for rapists and criminals. Don’t you think it’s odd for the League of Women Voters to engage in this anti-women, anti-self-defense movement?” Hammer said. “Not only are opponents of license holders having guns on campus engaging in a war against the Second Amendment and self-defense, they are engaging in a war against women who need to be able to defend themselves against rape and physical violence on a college campus. Women should not be required to surrender their constitutional right of self-defense and they clearly should not left defenseless against to a rapist.
“Those who oppose self-defense by women don’t have the facts on their side. When they can’t back up their political views with facts and reality, they resort to emotional rhetoric and predictions of doom,” Hammer said.
The Florida League of Women Voters has said they plan to oppose the bill, again.
The League has a history of anti-gun activism, which began in 1990 with “support of banning assault weapons, requiring all dealers to run criminal background checks at gun shows, and opposing laws that grant special protection for the gun industry.”
The League’s activism continues to this day.
Last week, Chuck O’Neal, the League’s First Vice-President, filed suit to stop the statewide bear hunt.
The League also opposed the removal of the ban on using suppressors for hunting in Florida. When the ban was lifted, they filed suit against the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and lost.
They also opposed campus carry during the last legislative session.
Bloomberg proxy group Everytown for Gun Safety has also voiced their opposition to Campus Carry in Florida last month.
During the last legislative session , Rep. Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda broke ranks and supported the campus carry bill.
The Tallahassee Democrat gave moving testimony about how she used a pistol to stop an assault while she was a college student.
Asked if Steube’s bill represents a choice between campus carry and campus rape, Hammer said, “I would not argue with that.”
“As a mother who raised three daughters, and as a grandmother raising a granddaughter now in college, I would certainly not argue with that,” Hammer said. “And I would suggest to you, that Rep. Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda would not argue with that either.”