Amid fierce opposition from Parkland residents, the Republican-controlled Florida legislature imposed a wholly unwelcome program on its citizens.
In a party-line vote, the House Appropriations Committee approved a new statewide program that calls for teachers to be armed in their classrooms. The program is set to train teachers to carry and use guns under the supervision of law enforcement.
One Republican, Rep. Jose Oliva, referred to teachers during a mass shooting as the “last line of defense.”
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Aside from the “school marshal” program, the House bill also introduces a three-day waiting period to buy a gun, raises the age to purchase a firearm from 18 to 21-years-old, and gives law enforcement the authority to seize guns from people who pose a risk to themselves or others.
Of course, the Florida legislature’s move ignores the root of the problem, which is the proliferation of guns in America. Americans – led by the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School – have demanded an end to Republicans’ inaction on commonsense gun reform.
At a pro-gun control rally in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, student Emma Gonzalez slammed Trump in an impassioned, fiery, and heartwrenching speech.
“If the president wants to come up to me and tell me to my face that it was a terrible tragedy and how it should never have happened, and maintain telling us how nothing is going to be done about it, I’m going to happily ask him how much money he received from the National Rifle Association,” Gonzalez said. “I already know — $30 million.”
This is the 59th mass shooting at or near a school this academic year. Americans are demanding change from Republicans in Washington who would rather defend the NRA than their own constituents.
Here’s to hoping that these Republican legislators are satisfied with their final stand in defense of guns over children, because November’s elections are coming up faster than they realize.