Courthouse Concealed Carry

Good morning I’m Marcus Michles. Welcome back to the Michles & Booth video blog. You know for many of you I bet you didn’t know that the legislative session is back together for 2017. A lot of times we don’t pay attention to laws until their past and we don’t pay that much attention to the process. But I get a call but not once a year when the legislature is dealing with different issues. I’ll get a call from media for my comment and yesterday I got one that I wasn’t expecting.

Channel 3 called and wanted to know my comment or my thoughts about a bill that made it through a subcommittee hearing yesterday that had to do with the passage of the right of citizens with conceal and carry permits to carry their weapons to the courthouse. I hadn’t heard about this bill. I gotta confess hadn’t heard about it. When I read about it, I realized it was promulgated and sponsored by Senators to be from Sarasota, a gentleman that I’ve known for many years and his an honorable guy but pretty sometimes controversial and his thoughts about gun rights. Don’t judge me I’m a second amendment guy and I’m a gun owner but there needs to be some real serious consideration when we think about bringing guns over to the courthouse.

So I took a position yesterday on Channel 3 that some of you may see and some of you may agree and some of you may disagree. Here’s the deal, the bill was actually passed through subcommittee under this argument. The argument is that lawyers are unsafe when they’re walking from their car to the courthouse or from the courthouse to the car. Now the bill would provide you a responsibility for the courthouse to take custody of the firearms and to safeguard them while the lawyers were in the courthouse or others for that matter. Anybody with a permit and it would place a burden on law enforcement, this stockpile to maintain and to safeguard those weapons and the sheriff’s are up in arms about that. They don’t like it at all. You can see Sheriff Ashley’s comments are pretty strong on this.

Here’s my thinking, I’ve been a lawyer for 30 years, I’ve never once been confronted violently on my way from my car to the courthouse. I don ‘t feel like I need protection nor do I know any of my peers or colleagues would have reported this although senators to be made mentioned it several of his friends who are lawyers in the sarasota area has apparently been threatened before. Here’s the problem. It’s very easy to claim gun rights as a general rule. It’s very easy to fear the removal of our right to bear arms. I get all that but you got to understand the dynamic of the courthouse when you consider a law like this.

The courthouse is full of people every day that are very challenged emotionally. They’re at their worst. They’re under pressure for child support issues, divorce issues, criminal issues, they’re victims of crimes. There are people that are under a lot of pressure. The courthouse generally doesn’t see people at their very best. It’s the last place around maybe, maybe not literally, maybe schools come ahead of this. I’ve been thinking about this overnight but the courthouses are definitely a place where you don’t want to introduce more weapons. Okay you don’t want people walking in the front door, the courthouse, armed even if their intention is to give up their firearm to law enforcement.

If you ask the bailiff at the courthouse and those charged with court security they’ll tell you that there are oftentimes very violent confrontations in the courthouse between people who have very different views or very different opinions. That’s why we have a courthouse is to resolve those issues but people can be very emotional at the courthouse and the last thing you want to do is put a gun in their hand. So let’s talk about that,excuse me, well what we know is that you’ve got emotionally charged environment.

You’ve got people that are charged with with keeping this personnel of the courthouse safe. The judges, the paralegals, the lawyers, anybody that’s there you want to safeguard them. So this is a bill quite frankly I think it’s kind of a publicity stunt. There is no house equivalent to it so it’s probably not going to pass this session. If you think about carefully you know if you have any interest in the process let your state senators know. Let your state representatives know you’re against this bill. We don’t want any more guns at the courthouse. That’s my two cents on the matter. I’m Marcus Michles thanks for tuning in. If you’ve got questions or comments give me a call or you can just talk to our main line. Either way I’ll talk to you about it if you want to. Thanks for watching.


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