Daytona News-Journal - Ease Florida's law prohibiting open carry
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Thread: Daytona News-Journal - Ease Florida's law prohibiting open carry

  1. Daytona News-Journal - Ease Florida's law prohibiting open carry

    Daytona News-Journal - Ease Florida's law prohibiting open carry

    Ease Florida's law prohibiting open carry - Opinion

    July 6, 2010 12:05 AM


    Sean Caranna of Port Orange is founder of Florida Open Carry, an organization devoted to changing Florida's gun laws. He spent eight years in the U.S. Army as an infantryman, including active duty service in Europe, Bosnia and South America, and he also served in the Florida Army National Guard. Since leaving the military he has worked in the computer imaging, simulation and advanced information-technology fields.

    Florida's ban on open carry creates practical issues and new constitutional problems.

    In 2008, the United States Supreme Court held that you have a right to have a handgun for self-defense. As ruled by the high court, you have "the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation." That right has just been applied to the states by the latest Supreme Court ruling that also struck down a licensing scheme that made handgun ownership almost impossible in Chicago. Your right to self-defense, anywhere you are legal to be, is constitutionally protected.



    Every day, hundreds of thousands of Floridians go about their daily activities while carrying a firearm. These people are retired or off-duty police, current or former military and the average law-abiding American. They are responsible people who are trained, fingerprinted, submit to a background check and are licensed to carry a firearm to be able to defend themselves and others should that horrible need ever arise.



    Florida, however, is one of only seven states with wide prohibitions on carrying an unconcealed firearm. That means people are required to conceal their firearm at all times. That works pretty well during the winter when we dress in heavier clothes and jackets, but, when you go inside, you want to take your coat off.



    There's an even bigger problem in the summer heat, especially while engaged in many outdoor activities. Florida's gun laws prohibiting displayed weapons include exceptions for going to and from the shooting range, fishing, hunting and camping, but that's about it. It is just not possible to conceal a standard handgun in most regular summer attire.
    There is also the issue of licensing a constitutional right. Writing this article did not require that I apply and pay for a writer's license. No reasonable person would argue that the First Amendment applies only to those who have been to journalism school and are employed as a member of the press. Just as the First Amendment does not protect your right to yell "fire" in a crowded theater; the Second does not give you the right to wave a gun around or threaten anyone.



    You have the right to carry a weapon for self-defense, but, in Florida, you have to be licensed to carry it concealed, and you can't carry it unconcealed. Now that the Second Amendment has been applied to the states just like the First, we have an issue to solve. Privileges, like driving, can be licensed but constitutional rights cannot.



    Repealing the ban on unconcealed weapons -- also known as "open carry" -- will eliminate these practical and constitutional problems in Florida. It will provide relief from the summer heat for people who are carrying their concealed firearms. You will be able to dress in lighter clothes, take off your coat when you stop for lunch or enjoy a walk in the park without having to make the choice between being defenseless and getting heatstroke. Lawful open carry would also protect our Florida concealed weapon/firearm license (CWFL) from constitutional issues. The CWFL will act to license the act of concealing the firearm -- and repealing the open-carry ban would satisfy the constitutional right of law-abiding American citizens to bear arms. Remember, "the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation" has been affirmed.


    The News-Journal has invited a variety of local folks to use this space to share their point of view about our greater community, its challenges and its opportunities for success.
    Executive Director, Florida Carry, Inc.

  2.   
  3. If you guys are serious about getting this ban lifted, you need some people who aren't afraid to take the heat of the law, open carry with a concealed carry permit, and get arrested. Once you have that, you'll have a better chance of fighting this in court.

  4. Quote Originally Posted by Midnight View Post
    If you guys are serious about getting this ban lifted, you need some people who aren't afraid to take the heat of the law, open carry with a concealed carry permit, and get arrested. Once you have that, you'll have a better chance of fighting this in court.
    Nope, no chance there. The only correct way is to get the FL statutes changed to allow for open carry. I do not believe the US Supreme Court is willing to say the 1st Amendment allows open carry. I'm not even sure it does, does the prevention of open carry prevent you from owning and carrying arms? I don't know. It certainly doesn't prevent you from carrying a handgun....
    You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.
    Robert A. Heinlein

  5. The courts will not be able to make a new law, only find the current ones constitutional or not. This is best handled by the legislature. If done incorrectly the courts easily could put everything in a situation where CCW licensing is found unconstitutional and Open Carry is still not allowed in Florida.
    Getting someone arrested will not be necessary to gain standing to challenge these laws. We will challenge them only if the legislature fails to act.
    Executive Director, Florida Carry, Inc.

  6. Quote Originally Posted by Wolfling68 View Post
    Nope, no chance there. The only correct way is to get the FL statutes changed to allow for open carry. I do not believe the US Supreme Court is willing to say the 1st Amendment allows open carry. I'm not even sure it does, does the prevention of open carry prevent you from owning and carrying arms? I don't know. It certainly doesn't prevent you from carrying a handgun....
    It really isn't a 1st Amendment issue, What we have is a 14th Amendment Equal Protection Clause issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by StogieC
    In Harper v. Virginia Board of Elections, The U.S. Supreme Court noted that a state violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution whenever it makes the affluence of the voter or payment of any fee an electoral standard. Voter qualifications have no relation to wealth.

    When licensing and registration fees are required to bear arms, they become tantamount to a Poll Tax and stand to deprive those of the least means of their civil right to bear arms. All too often, these are exactly the citizens who are in the direst need of a means to self defense.
    Quote Originally Posted by StogieC
    Licensing is also counter to the Supreme Court's ruling in Murdoch v. Pennsylvania, which prohibits any state from charging a license fee or tax for the exercise of a right protected by the US constitution.

    "It is a license tax, a flat tax, imposed on the exercise of a privilege granted by the Bill of Rights. A state may not impose a charge for the enjoyment of a right granted by the federal constitution. The fact that the ordinance was imposed indiscriminately does not save it from being unconstitutional."
    "This tax is not a charge for the enjoyment of a privilege or benefit bestowed by the state. The privilege in question exists apart from state authority. It is guaranteed the people by the federal constitution."
    Executive Director, Florida Carry, Inc.

  7. #6
    Good Job Sean.. You're doing great so far..
    I would have put the website URL in the article. What is the URL anywayz.????

    Gulf Coast, Floriduh
    Sccy is the limit

  8. Florida Open Carry

    And we have a facebook group at:
    Florida Open Carry | Facebook
    Executive Director, Florida Carry, Inc.

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