© 2016 by Phillip Evans
Georgia – -(Ammoland.com)- If you’re as old as I am, you remember that delightful game show, “To Tell The Truth“, that can still be seen on cable TV, where three players tried to fool the celebrity panel as to which one was the genuine expert in a particular field, and who were the imposters.
The imposters were allowed to lie, but the expert could not. It was great fun, and I still love those old black and white episodes with Kitty Carlisle, Bill Cullen, and others of that era.
There is another show being played out in Florida with regard to who is behind derailing the restoration of our human right of self-defense, and the three contestants are all Republicans.
The right of licensed citizens to openly carry a holstered pistol in public (with a few exceptions such as while hunting, fishing or camping) was stripped away in 1987, orchestrated by Clinton Democrat Janet Reno of Waco fame or infamy, depending on your point of view.
Adult college students 21 and over who are licensed to carry a firearm have never had their Second Amendment Right to bear arms on a college campus in Florida recognized. It has always been infringed by Florida politicians who enjoy in their immediate vicinity armed protection, but who claim that campus police scattered about here and there is fine and dandy for you, and would have you wait until police can either rescue you or draw a chalk line around your body.
But politicians are special, being servants of the people, so their lives get the premium protection, while you get “good enough”.
If college students had the same high level of protection as state politicians, then perhaps we can talk about why it might not be so bad to keep licensed adults on campus disarmed – although even in that case, a right is still a right, regardless of how much some may believe we need it.
Remember the Bill of Rights? It’s not called the “Bill of Needs“, and for good reason.
And Today’s Contestants Are…
Who are the three players in Florida? From the top down, they are: Governor Rick Scott, Senate President Andy Gardiner, and Senate Judiciary Chairman Miguel Diaz de la Portilla.
One would think that with a Republican majority in the Florida Senate, things would be moving along pretty well in the rights restoration department.
However, open carry failed to pass in 2011 when SB-234 and HB-517 were amended on the Senate floor to remove the open carry provision, and campus carry failed to pass last year.
For two years in a row, Senator Diaz de la Portilla has refused to allow campus carry to have a full vote on the Senate floor.
And now he is saying that the Open Carry bill is on “life support”, meaning there is a slim to none chance of it receiving a full vote.
How ironic and thoughtful of him to use that phrase to describe the chances of SB 300, a bill that would help deter crime and save lives!
Just Following Orders
Let’s assume for a moment that this is not by his choice, that he is following orders from his boss, Senate President Gardiner. At best then, he favors his position more than our rights, and at worst, he actually desires to keep citizens defenseless on college campuses, and to prevent us from openly carrying elsewhere in public, in a free-speech exercise of our Second Amendment Rights, and in the manner we decide best to carry for the protection of ourselves and our families.
Senate President Andy Gardiner could send both bills to the Senate floor for a vote on his own. He has that authority. His only excuse would be pressure from Governor Scott to not do that. So, same situation. Does Senator Gardiner have some reward in mind more important to him than our rights, or does he just simply hate the idea of restoring them?
Now we come to Governor Scott. Has he publicly advocated for bills he wants to see passed? Of course he has, and has taken credit for “working with the legislature” to get it done.
When first asked about the Open Carry and Campus Carry bills, was his response a resounding, “Yes!“? No, it was the whimper, “I haven’t seen the bills”.
Well Governor, have you seen them yet? I have spoken with someone at his office on the phone, who explained to me that the Governor is letting the bills “go through the legislative process“. In other words, the Governor is content to let the bills die once again in committee. He is content to not work with the legislature in this case. Why?
Perhaps Gov. Scott is just too busy to bother with trivial matters such as the safety and rights of his citizens?
And The Winner Is…
If Florida’s Governor truly advocated for our rights, he would find his voice and use it. He would exercise the prerogative of his office to be a leader and stand on principle. Does he honor our rights? His inaction to speak a word on our behalf speaks louder than the words he uses to claim he supports the Second Amendment.
On the television show mentioned earlier, there could be only one correct choice. Who is the winner among the three Florida players? It would seem they all are. They have all effectively fooled the voters to believe that they stood for freedom.
About Phillip Evans