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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Sue Carlton column: Gun laws run amok in Florida



With the world watching Florida, and not for a good reason, here's our state's take on guns in a nutshell:

In Florida, someone can pursue someone else, start a confrontation, shoot the person dead and still go free, as long as he was afraid for himself when he pulled the trigger. This has happened more than once under our now infamous "stand your ground'' law that says you don't have to look for an option before using deadly force, a recent Times investigation revealed. And it's happened even though the very politicians who pushed this law say it shouldn't apply when the shooter pursued.

There's more. The city of Tampa can come up with rules for banning weapons including knives, metal pipes and even squirt guns from around the politically-charged Republican National Convention when thousands come here for the event in August.

But when it comes to guns, state law trumps local sense. Got a permit, come on down. This is Florida, after all, land of 900,000 licensed concealed weapons carriers, nearly twice what even Texas boasts.

Column here.

[Last modified: Tuesday, April 3, 2012 6:51pm]


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