State Preemption means that a matter is reserved for regulation via state law only.
In other words, if something is placed under state preemption and is permitted by the state, then local governments are forbidden to pass any laws making it prohibited.Local governments often howl about this, crying that they have lost control over something they should be able to control. And the one thing they want to control more than anything else, except perhaps tax dollars, is weapons.
More accurately, local governments want to control citizens who carry weapons.
No need to have a logic fail here. You can pull but not push something with a rope. Just because one type of control is good doesn’t mean another kind of control is also good.
Apples and Oranges Anyone?
Why not then allow local governments to regulate the possession and carrying of weapons such as firearms, knives, batons, and pepper spray, if local control works best for other things?The main reason is that self-defense is a universal human right. If we all have lives we value, then we should all be able to safeguard them wherever we need to be. If local governments could successfully keep me and my family safe 100% of the time, I’d have to agree with them that they are doing something right. But if they are not able to do so, it means they are no longer responsible for my safety.
I don’t allow my children to carry weapons, but I also take full and complete responsibility for their safety. Local governments do not even come close to doing the same for adults in their towns and cities. Therefore, I must take responsibility for the safety of my family, if it cannot come from anywhere else.
If local governments wish to treat adults as children and put them under penalty of an adult spanking such as fines and jail for disobedience, then they had better pony up and take full responsibility for their citizens’ safety.
They cannot have their cake and eat it, too.
And citizens must not fear arrest and the threat of jail time merely for crossing a city or town boundary where carry of weapons is legal in one local area but not the other. Do we really want to treat citizens with gotcha-style laws, just because we choose to bear arms for the purpose of not being crime victims?
But There’s A Sign!
Local governments can put up all the “No Weapons Permitted” signs they want in all their public areas and on their streets, but a criminal bent on getting money for his next drug high will ignore those signs and proceed to assault and rob at will using any weapon of his choosing.
If that’s true, then why shouldn’t I be able to use any common self-defense weapon of my choosing to protect my life and my loved one’s lives?
It would seem then, that signs are only useful for those who are inclined to obey them. And those who obey signs (if they are even noticed) are typically potential victims, and not criminals.
No, I’m not talking about rebellious mere citizens, but local government officials. For example – in 1987, the state of Florida passed a law putting into effect state preemption of firearms: Section 790.33, F.S., known as The Joe Carlucci Uniform Firearms Act.
The State Legislature reserved to itself the whole matter of firearms regulation. That meant that any local government could not make any rule or law more restrictive than state law. Any local laws passed must mirror state law with regard to firearms.
That did not set well with a whole bunch of Florida mayors, city council members, county commissioners, and others in local governments. So much so that they kept on doing what they were doing. These officials arrogantly disobeyed state law by continuing to forbid firearms in places that were now legal to be carried in or at by licensed citizens. And they left up those signs which they believed stopped criminals from carrying weapons. Much like they believed that flying unicorns sprinkled fairy dust to create rainbows.
Same Old, Same Old:
These officials quickly went back to their happy selves, because in their eyes nothing had changed, and it was business as usual. There was no penalty to be found for thumbing their nose at the firearms state preemption law.
Now perhaps they understand what it’s like to have a taste of their own medicine. They wanted to fine and jail their citizens merely for wanting to be armed for their protection. It serves these local officials right to be threatened with heavy fines and loss of their job for using their position of authority to try and deny free citizens their right of self-defense from criminals that would harm them.
“I think it’s the stupidest thing the Legislature has ever done,” said Sunrise Commissioner Don Rosen.
“I think the state Legislature went overboard,” said Margate Mayor Pam Donovan.When HB 45 became law, prophetic predictions of the future were not in short supply. They were being given out like free candy to anyone who would listen.
“When it comes to the safety of my residents I feel very strongly that allowing guns to be in public parks is not a good practice,” said Coral Springs Mayor Roy Gold. “I’ve been at parks with my children [at sporting events]. People get heated and argue and get quite angry. I think the Legislature has made a huge mistake.”
In North Lauderdale, Commission Gary Frankel said, “I think guns in a close-knit residential neighborhood should not be allowed on the streets. It’s dangerous, everybody knows that. It’s a remnant of the Old West.”Well, since 2011 has there been a rash of licensed gun carriers carrying legally under Florida state law getting angry while watching sports games at parks and shooting anyone? No?
Has there been a rash of wild west style shootouts between licensed gun carriers carrying legally under Florida state law? No?
Nothing New Under The Sunshine
Some, in Florida’s sister state, Georgia tried to save face by blaming new GA law HB 60 (called in common vernacular, “Guns Everywhere Law”) for a confrontation at a convenience store between two people who both had carry licenses. The one man, who was concealing his pistol, verbally challenged the other man who was openly carrying his holstered pistol. The idiot challenger wanted the other man to present his license to make sure he was legally carrying.
Neither man went for his gun wild west style, and no one got hurt.Adam Weinstein’s (author of the gawker.com article linked above) logic fail in blaming HB 60 is that both men could have been totally ignorant of the new law, and that would not have changed a thing, because licensed carry of firearms in convenience stores has been legal since there have been convenience stores in Georgia – legal even pre-SB 308 when there still existed the “public gathering” law ( http://tiny.cc/jto57x ) in Georgia.
But folks like Weinstein will twist logic to the point of unrecognizability to try and prove their point.
State Preemption Is Progress
Here is a tidbit from the CDC: “Studies that directly assessed the effect of actual defensive uses of guns (i.e., incidents in which a gun was ‘used’ by the crime victim in the sense of attacking or threatening an offender) have found consistently lower injury rates among gun-using crime victims compared with victims who used other self-protective strategies.”
Read more at: http://www.gunsandammo.com/politics/cdc-gun-research-backfires-on-obama
I won’t comment on these here because there are pending court cases that should resolve to one side or another the issues. But some information has been posted in various threads on the Georgia Packing forum.
Amazingly, even though Florida added teeth to its preemption law in 2011, there are still a few places there that try to unlawfully deny your rights.
There is work at present being done by Florida Carry (https://www.floridacarry.org/) to address these.
I’m honored to have brought one such place to Florida Carry’s attention, and have officially joined them as a member.