Anti-gun politicians have introduced a slew of new gun control bills in recent months. These bills include universal background checks, red flag laws and much more. However, a Florida State Senator recently introduced a gun bill that would also affect the First Amendment.
The bill, SB 1310, would actually make it illegal for minors to post pictures of guns to social media pages. The text reads, “prohibiting the posting or publishing of a picture of a firearm, BB gun, air or gas-operated gun, or device displayed to resemble a firearm to social media by a minor.”
So, not only would this bill make it illegal to post pictures of guns, it also makes it illegal to post something that even looks like a gun. It also allows a court to requiring parenting classes because of a violation. However, the most egregious part might be it requires officers to seize and dispose of firearms possessed or used by minors in violation of that law. Also, the bill doesn’t consider the difference between legal and illegal use of guns. The photo of a school’s competitive shotgun team winning the championship and one of a kid pointing a gun at the camera have the same penalty.
Some point out that this bill violates the First Amendment as well as the Second. The bill doesn’t carve out exceptions for historical or political posts. It would actually make it illegal for a kid to post a photo of him or her legally using guns at a range, as well as forward political posts featuring gun rights.
This bill also includes a safe storage section, which would require guns be locked up or owners could face second degree misdemeanor charges.
Florida State Senator Jason Pizzo
Pizzo is a former Miami-Dade Assistant State Attorney and current Florida state senator for the 38th district. He also introduced the bill. When he was running, he stated that posting guns on social media provides probably cause to confiscate those guns.
“If you post it on social media, that’s probable cause for us to come get the guns out of your house,” said Pizzo video. “That’s it. It’s now on you to explain why you have a gun in your house and why it’s on social media…”
As an attorney, one would think Pizzo would understand the potential dangers of this bill. In addition to the sure to come legal challenges, it sets a precedent of limiting information on topics some people don’t like.