• Indivisible/Kathryn

Why does anyone need an assault weapon?

Updated: Jul 25, 2019



Parkland Victims

“The last time I saw my son he was in a coffin," says Maria Wright, whose son Jerry was killed at Pulse. "And when I put my hand on his chest, there was no chest there. They had to put Styrofoam to hold his shirt up. Because that’s the kind of damage these weapons do.”


And I ask again, why does anyone need an assault weapon except to commit mass murder?


BAWN - Ban Assault Weapons Now!, a bipartisan organization led in part by survivors of mass shootings in Orlando and Parkland, has been gathering signatures to place an amendment on the ballot for 2020,and I know many of our Indivisible members have been diligently collecting signatures. We are pleased to announce that BAWN has reached 103,000 signed petitions and this should trigger a Florida Supreme Court Review of the proposed amendment. But we certainly can't stop now. A total of 766,200 verified voter signatures are needed for the initiative to reach the November 2020 ballot and the money will not likely be there to hire paid collectors. Especially since Ron DeSantis and the other pro-gun members of our Florida legislature have made it more difficult for citizens to initiate action when our lawmakers are simply not responding and are neglecting to listen to the majority of their constituency.


A new state law makes it illegal for citizen initiatives to pay petition-gatherers by the signature, which will further drive up costs. It also requires petition-gatherers to register with the secretary of state, It also imposes fines of $50 for every form not submitted within 30 days and $1,000 for forms not returned, All these measures are meant to stymie the efforts of grassroots movements and citizen initiatives.


"The NRA is thrilled. “These changes are critically important to gun owners, as anti-gunners repeatedly try to subvert the Constitution and Second Amendment rights by imposing gun bans and gun control through the ballot petition process,” NRA lobbyist Marion Hammer said in an email blast."


But we can't let that stop us. This is too important. To our children, to our safety, to our country.



The links below will take you to the latest version of the petition and a separate information sheet that must be carried by all petition collectors to be made available to anyone who wants to read it. As noted above, petitions need to be returned within 30 days.


Please - if you're not already doing so, print out some copies for your friends, neighbors, co-workers. And please volunteer to join our efforts at the Venice Libraries and Farmers Market to collect signatures.


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Sources:

https://www.sun-sentinel.com/opinion/editorials/fl-op-edit-ban-assault-weapons-in-florida-20190616-z2r2xagvdvgurlvwldnf2etwy4-story.html


https://www.wlrn.org/post/florida-push-ban-assault-weapons-hits-milestone-ahead-pulse-shooting-anniversary



Petition

Petition text