Senate Committee Passes Concealed Weapon Bill

Florida Senate’s Criminal Justice Committee has recently passed a concealed weapon bill that some students do not agree with.

If passed, Senate bill 176 has the potential to make Florida the ninth state that allowed those with concealed weapon permits to carry guns on college campuses.

The bill was passed by a 3-2 vote and was sponsored by the committee’s chairman, Greg Evers who is adamant about allowing people the chance to protect themselves.

Florida A&M University and Florida State University both had incidents last semester with shootings on or near their campuses.

FSU criminal justice student, Monique Williams does not agree with the proposal.

“Students should not be allowed to carry guns on campus,” Williams declared.  

Joseph Abraham, a graduate student from Brooklyn, NY., was not happy about the bill being passed by the committee and hopes that it will not go through.

“I think it's ridiculous. Imagine if 10 students in a class have guns, it’ll be crazy. I think it’s up to the police to do their job, with them around that’s enough protection to have,” Abraham said.

Florida A&M University Entomology professor, Raymond Hix, Ph.D did not see there being much of a change if the bill were passed or not.

“By not passing this bill it’s not going to make campuses any safer,” Hix said.

When asked would the bill, if approved, take away from what the FAMU Police Department’s doing, Hix disagreed.

“It won’t take anything away from what they’re doing. They’ll still be doing the same thing they’re doing now,” Hix said.

Lakeland native and junior food science student, Gabrielle Dukes saw the pros and cons with the bill.

“We walk around the campus at night and with things happening around the city, we can be protected more. The cons could be that the weapons are being used inappropriately, “ Dukes said.

The bill still has to pass through three more committees before it’s presented to the senate.