If Florida State Sen. Audrey Gibson (D-Jacksonville) has her way, ammo buyers would be required to complete anger management courses before being allowed to purchase bullets, Fox News reported Wednesday.
According to the proposal she submitted Saturday, anyone seeking to purchase ammunition would be required to take the courses every 10 years.
“This is not about guns,” she said. “This is about ammunition, and not only for the safety of the general community, but also for the safety of law enforcement.”
Gibson says she’s concerned about citizens who stockpile ammunition, and told Fox she wants them to “think, really, about how much ammunition they need.”
Fox reported that Gibson announced her intentions to introduce the bill a month ago at a rally for 17-year-old Jordan Davis, a Jacksonville teen who was shot and killed in a confrontation last November.
If her proposal becomes law, it will be illegal to “sell ammunition to another person who does not present certification that he or she has successfully completed an anger-management program consisting of at least 2 hours of online or face-to-face instruction in anger-management techniques.”
But Sean Caranna, executive director of Florida Carry, called Gibson’s proposal a “ridiculous” attention-grabber that insults gun owners.
“When I first saw it, I thought it had to be a joke,” he said. “They’re trying to say that anyone who owns a gun or shoots a gun or has ammunition for it needs counseling and obviously has some anger problems.”
“We’ve got a lot of issues that should be the focus of these bill slots with limited filing, but instead we put in something as ridiculous as this,” he added. “I don’t see a planet where this passes. This is an attempt to grab attention – it has to be. And that’s really disappointing.”
Orlando attorney Jon Gutmacher told Fox the bill would likely be found unconstitutional based on prior restraint.
“It has no reasonable relationship to anything,” he told Fox News. “There has to be a reasonable basis to believe that a person had a substantial anger problem that could cause public harm.”
Gutmacher said the bill is “absurd” and an “insult” to gun owners.
He also had strong words for Gibson.
“And anyone who proposes that legislation is in my mind unfit for the legislature because it shows a basic problem with their thinking process, aside from their lack of understanding of what the Constitution is all about. That’s the kind of bill that doesn’t even get past committee,” he said.
Since the Newtown school shootings, Democrats across the country have proposed a number of measures intended to restrict the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms.
While many proposals have focused on so-called “assault weapons,” some have considered regulating ammunition.
Democrats in Wisconsin, for example, circulated a draft proposal that would ban ammunition required by the state for hunting deer and bear.
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