This month, a Southwest Florida state lawmaker has reintroduced a bill that would permit conceal carry licensees to carry firearms on public college and university campuses. The measure, from State Rep. Greg Steube R-Sarasota, comes in the wake of last month’s shooting at Florida State University that resulted in the wounding of three students and the death of the lone gunman. Florida leads the nation in the number of concealed weapon permit holders with more than one million licensees. Gun control advocates oppose the bill citing a recent study from the group Every Town For Our Safety which found Florida has had the highest number of school shootings since the mass shooting at Sandy Hook two years ago.
Supporters of the measure point to last month’s FSU shooting incident as a reason why conceal carry licensees should be allowed to carry guns on campus. Some members of the group Students for Concealed Carry at FSU say the shooter in that incident could have been subdued more quickly if they’d been permitted to carry their firearms on campus. Supporters also argue it’s unconstitutional to prevent people licensed to carry guns from defending themselves in the face of danger. We’ll hear from both sides as we also explore another bill proposed by Rep. Steube that would allow public school districts in Florida to allow specifically designated staff to carry guns on school property.