If Vice Mayor Dean Trantalis of Fort Lauderdale has his way, the sale of “assault rifles” at gun shows held on city property would be prohibited.
Following the tragic event a few weeks ago in Orlando, politicians at all levels have come out for more gun control, arguing that banning certain weapons will eliminate mass shootings! They all seem to forget (or ignore) the fact that in all those mass shootings involving “assault weapons,” there was a sick individual that had to pull the trigger or the weapon was nothing more than an expensive accessory.
Trantalis wants the city to rein in activities at the gun shows held regularly at Fort Lauderdale’s War Memorial Auditorium by including a ban on the sale of certain weapons when it negotiates leases for future gun shows.
He is not alone in his quest. Some city commissioners are willing to consider taking that step if it doesn’t run afoul of state law banning cities from passing gun regulations.
Trantalis argues the ban wouldn’t be a law, just a lease term. So, once its current lease expires on November 30 this year, if Florida Gun Shows wants to continue renting space for its events at the site in the city’s Holiday Park, it would have to agree to the new terms if approved. Florida Gun Shows (formerly Suncoast Gun Show) has been holding shows on city property for more than 30 years.
Before its current lease expires, Florida Gun Shows has two more weekend shows, September 17-18, and November 19-20, at War Memorial Auditorium.
Commissioners thought about stopping the gun show in 2013 following the Sandy Hook shooting, but instead approved a new lease that required background checks for private and vendor sales at the show, prohibited sales on city property outside the building and required all vendors to be licensed gun dealers.
Trantalis believes “assault rifles,” such as the AR-15 and AK-47, should not be part of the merchandise offered at the shows.
“I’m saying [for] all future leases and renewals,” Trantalis said. “The day has come, we don’t need automatic weapons in the sport of hunting.”
The commission has asked City Attorney Cynthia Everett to determine if the city is able to put such a restriction in place.
“If we have an opinion that says that, I think we can bring it up for discussion and a vote,” Mayor Jack Seiler said. “I don’t believe in doing away with the gun show, but I have no problem regulating the activities to the extent we can.”
But what these politicians don’t seem to understand is that the basis of the Second Amendment’s right to keep and bear arms is not that it protects the right to shoot deer, but it protects the right to shoot tyrants, and shoot at them effectively.
What are your thoughts about the proposed ban?