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Critics Say Open Carry Means 'Gunshine State'


A Senate Panel Tuesday approved a bill allowing concealed weapon permit holders to openly carry their guns. But with a couple of powerful special interest groups still up in the air, the proposal's future could be in doubt.

Some critics warn open carry will hurt Florida’s image and transform the Sunshine State into the “Gunshine State.” But Bradford County Sheriff Gordon Smith says an openly armed citizenry is a safe citizenry.

“I call this crime prevention 101 bill, because any law enforcement worth their grain of salt knows, that criminals pick soft targets, easy targets to rob, rape and pilfer.”

The Florida Sheriff’s Association is still on the fence and it’s singlehandedly killed pro-guns bills in the past. Republican Senator Don Gaetz of Niceville says the Florida Chamber of Commerce will drop its opposition.

“We believe in the eventual forgiveness of sin and redemption of ignorance on the part of everyone and I believe we can work together with the business community.”