gun control

The gun issue is beginning to wane in voters' minds ahead of the November midterm elections, a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll finds.

While almost half of all registered voters (46 percent) say a candidate's position on gun policy will be a major factor in deciding whom to vote for, that number is down 13 points from February, when a shooting at a Florida high school sparked outrage.

Danny Hwang

Student survivors from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High hosted a "listening party" on Wednesday evening to encourage an exchange of ideas within the school community about how to address gun violence. 

The event, which took place at a Marriott Hotel in Coral Springs, was closed to the public and media. It was, however, followed by a press conference at which the participants, many of them student group leaders at the Parkland school, opened themselves up to press.

Associated Press

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High will not allow gun rights advocate Charlie Kirk to speak on campus.

“The school’s administration has met with the student organizers and advised them that non-school sponsored, student-initiated guest speaker assemblies/meetings are not permitted to take place on campus,” Cathleen Brennan, a Broward School District spokeswoman said in a statement late Thursday night.

A handful of Florida Gulf Coast University students walked around campus with empty holsters Tuesday. It was planned by the university’s College Republicans group. The students are doing it to make sure they’re not left out of the national gun control conversation.

Three more Florida cities are challenging a state law prohibiting them from enacting gun regulations.

"There's a bullet hole in my child's car seat," Julie Humphrey Vallelunga posted on Facebook last month. "That bullet missed my neck by inches as I sat in my car at the intersection next to their school, waiting to pick them up a few minutes later."

Humphrey Vallelunga saw the shooter a split second before her windshield shattered, but there was nothing she could do. Her children's school, Powell Elementary School in northwest Washington, went into lockdown, as did several other nearby elementary schools.

Andrea Perdomo / WLRN News

Teens across the country have been inspired by the wave of youth activism for gun reform following the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. 

In South Florida, a group of students felt it was important for their peers to possess the knowledge and skills necessary to keep the movement going. They created the Young Leaders Summit, an event consisting of mini-seminars designed to teach young people how to participate in government.

NPR via Getty Images

Last week, several cities announced they were suing Gov. Rick Scott to overturn a 1987 state law that bans cities from passing tougher restrictions than the state on guns..

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy has signed an executive order making data on gun violence more accessible to the public.

The so-called "Name and Shame" order will cite the origin of a gun involved in a crime. According to the state, approximately 80 percent of guns involved in crime come from outside of New Jersey.

When the parishioners at the Lighthouse Mexico Church Of God gather for worship each Sunday, many of them are armed.

The fact that they carry is no secret. The church, located in the small, upstate town of Mexico, N.Y., says on its website that it's "not a gun-free zone." Pastor Ron Russell began to encourage church members to carry concealed weapons after Dylann Roof killed nine people at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C. in 2015.

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN

Christopher Powell was pretty sheltered growing up in Coral Springs.

“I didn’t wake up worrying, like many others across the country, about losing my life in school to gun violence,” the 17-year-old high school junior said during a town hall meeting on gun control and school safety on Thursday night.

Then he survived the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas.

“After the shooting on Feb. 14, I now have a different sense of security,” Powell said.

Fort Lauderdale gun shows
U.S. Customs and Border Protection / AP

Fort Lauderdale’s War Memorial Auditorium, inside Holiday Park, has been hosting gun shows seven times a year for the last 30 years. On Tuesday, the City Commission announced at a conference meeting that it’s looking to end those shows later this year.

 

Charlie King lives in the city’s Victoria Park neighborhood and frequently speaks in front of the commission. He told commissioners at the meeting that he doesn’t like the gun show location. 

Town Hall For Our Lives Coral Springs
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

One of the initiatives to keep the gun violence prevention movement going took shape on Tuesday night when the first "Town Hall For Our Lives," hosted by U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts, opened its microphones to the community. 

Weston City Hall
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

The city of Weston wants to ban weapons in city buildings and parks. The city of Coral Gables wants to ban the sale of assault-style weapons inside city limits. But as of now, both of those actions would break a state law that establishes that only Tallahassee can regulate firearms in Florida. 

In fact, local officials who try to enact their own gun-control policies right now face fines up to $5,000 or even removal from office. 

In Florida, only the state is allowed to regulate firearms. Local government officials who ignore that law — posting signs prohibiting guns in city parks, for example — face stiff penalties. They include removal from office, a $5,000 fine officials must pay from their personal funds, and lawsuits from any person or group affected.

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