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Fathers of slain Parkland students beg Florida reps to pass gun bill

While Florida House members sparred Wednesday over a gun control measure, the fathers of two girls killed in the Park...

Posted: Mar 7, 2018 12:50 PM
Updated: Mar 7, 2018 12:50 PM

While Florida House members sparred Wednesday over a gun control measure, the fathers of two girls killed in the Parkland school massacre showed up to make one final plea: Pass Senate Bill 7026.

"There's so many good things in the bill, that if someone opposes it, it's hard for me to comprehend why," said Andrew Pollack, whose daughter, Meadow, was killed in the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Two fathers said they spoke on behalf of the 17 families who lost relatives

Florida's legislative session ends this week

He and Ryan Petty, who lost his daughter Alaina, traveled 450 miles to Tallahassee to speak, they said, on behalf of the 17 families of those killed in the February 14 rampage.

"As families, we've got different opinions, we come from different backgrounds," Petty said. "We came together, we're united behind this legislation, and our ask is that the House come together as the families have done and pass this bill."

SB 7026 -- dubbed the "Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act" -- would add several gun control measures to the books in Florida.

It would raise the age to buy a firearm from 18 to 21, require a three-day waiting period for most gun purchases, and ban the sale or possession of bump-fire stocks. The bill also would give law enforcement more power to seize weapons and ammunition from those deemed mentally unfit and provide more funding for mental health services and armed school resource officers.

But a key sticking point is whether to allow some school staff members to carry guns as part of voluntary program, implemented only if the local sheriff's department and school district agree.

The bill now excludes teachers who "exclusively perform classroom duties as classroom teachers" from being allowed to carry guns at school. Those who have military or law enforcement experience or who teach Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps programs could be eligible, with 144 hours of training.

Many students say they oppose arming teachers in school, and some staged a "die-in" at the state capitol during this final week of the legislative session.

Pollack, whose son said he agreed with President Donald Trump on arming some teachers, said the bill might not be perfect -- but in this case, it's better than nothing.

"Nothing in life is ever perfect," the father said. "But the majority of this bill is going to help the communities."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 343505

Reported Deaths: 7543
CountyCasesDeaths
Hinds23932444
DeSoto23229283
Harrison20527329
Rankin15411291
Jackson15232252
Madison10959227
Lee10719179
Jones9047169
Forrest8723159
Lauderdale7884244
Lowndes7054151
Lamar702989
Lafayette6548124
Washington5595139
Pearl River5196152
Bolivar4954134
Oktibbeha494398
Panola4771112
Warren4728128
Marshall4701106
Pontotoc447773
Union433279
Monroe4330137
Neshoba4281181
Hancock428088
Lincoln4176116
Pike3667113
Leflore3627125
Tate353388
Alcorn350974
Sunflower347694
Scott341176
Adams340988
Yazoo339376
Copiah324968
Simpson322891
Itawamba314680
Coahoma314085
Tippah306568
Prentiss298863
Covington293484
Leake285475
Marion284181
Wayne277543
George272251
Grenada269488
Newton262364
Tishomingo239770
Winston236784
Jasper230648
Stone229637
Attala226373
Chickasaw219060
Holmes200174
Clay197654
Clarke186880
Tallahatchie183742
Calhoun181332
Smith179235
Yalobusha171540
Walthall145748
Lawrence142826
Greene140134
Amite137543
Noxubee135235
Perry133538
Montgomery133044
Carroll126431
Webster121232
Jefferson Davis116734
Tunica114227
Benton106725
Claiborne105331
Kemper102429
Humphreys100133
Franklin87923
Quitman84719
Choctaw82619
Wilkinson78032
Jefferson71328
Sharkey51618
Issaquena1736
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 577463

Reported Deaths: 11510
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson841981589
Mobile47171860
Madison37047533
Tuscaloosa26915465
Shelby26873256
Montgomery25918625
Baldwin24499328
Lee16949181
Calhoun15252332
Morgan15017290
Etowah14778370
Marshall12933235
Houston11774292
Elmore10761217
St. Clair10617252
Limestone10574158
Cullman10363205
Lauderdale10083254
DeKalb9382191
Talladega8836188
Walker7681287
Autauga7479114
Jackson7317117
Blount7266139
Colbert6635142
Coffee6163132
Dale5453117
Russell470642
Chilton4682117
Covington4649125
Franklin450081
Tallapoosa4440156
Escambia427882
Chambers3898125
Dallas3717163
Clarke367763
Marion3427106
Pike327879
Lawrence3225101
Winston294973
Bibb284565
Geneva276383
Marengo259967
Barbour246261
Pickens240062
Butler238272
Hale232778
Fayette225264
Henry209245
Monroe197241
Randolph196744
Cherokee196348
Washington180139
Macon168752
Crenshaw165558
Clay163759
Cleburne160245
Lamar149938
Lowndes144854
Wilcox130531
Bullock126142
Conecuh119630
Coosa116929
Perry109928
Sumter109032
Greene98736
Choctaw64325
Out of AL00
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Tupelo
Clear
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Hi: 97° Lo: 78°
Feels Like: 105°
Columbus
Partly Cloudy
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Hi: 95° Lo: 78°
Feels Like: 111°
Oxford
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Feels Like: 103°
Starkville
Partly Cloudy
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Hi: 95° Lo: 76°
Feels Like: 105°
Very hot and very humid conditions linger in our area for our Saturday. However, the heat and humidity start to dwindle a bit as we go into our Sunday and beyond. As a matter of fact below normal high temperatures for this time of year.
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