Want Bullets? Florida Lawmaker Thinks You Need to Take an Anger Management Course First

Leah Barkoukis

3/7/2013 2:31:00 PM - Leah Barkoukis

Forget about trying to bring more jobs to the Sunshine State or focusing on Florida's high rate of foreclosures, state Sen. Audrey Gibson thinks what the state really needs is for people to take an anger management course before they can purchase ammunition. Yes, really:

The bill filed Saturday by state Sen. Audrey Gibson, D-Jacksonville, would require a three-day waiting period for the sale of any firearm and the sale of ammunition to anyone who has not completed anger management courses. The proposal would require ammo buyers to take the anger management courses every 10 years. “This is not about guns," Gibson said.
"This is about ammunition and not only for the safety of the general community, but also for the safety of law enforcement.”

When Executive Director of Florida Carry Sean Caranna first heard about the bill he thought it had to be a joke. “They’re trying to say that anyone who owns a gun or shoots a gun or has ammunition for it needs counseling and obviously has some anger problems.”

The bill states, “[Selling] ammunition to another person who does not present certification that he or she has successfully completed an anger-management program consisting of at least 2 hours of online or fact-to-face instruction in anger-management techniques”—violation of which results in a second-degree misdemeanor charge.

However, attorney Jon Gutmacher says it’s very likely the bill would be found unconstitutional. “It has no reasonable relationship to anything,” he said. “There has to be a reasonable basis to believe that a person had a substantial anger problem that could cause public harm.”

Perhaps Gibson should be required to take a course on the U.S. Constitution before filing another bill.