A group of Miami-Dade mayors — some of them gun owners, all taking a politically risky stance — launched an effort Tuesday to try and sidestep state firearms laws by forcing gun distributors and manufacturers to disclose training techniques and methods used to keep firearms out of the hands of indicted traffickers.
The group pledged support to a nonprofit called Arms With Ethics, which is pushing for laws in cities throughout Miami-Dade that would force gun sellers to train staff to out straw buyers, and to admit if indicted traffickers buy their weapons.
The initiative is bound to be a tough sell in Florida, a gun-rights-favoring state with a controversial Stand Your Ground law, and other laws that allow firearms in public parks and homeowners to build firing ranges in their backyards.
“It isn’t about trying to infringe on everyone’s right to bear arms,” said Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert. It’s about “telling us what you’re doing, and trying to keep our children safe.”
Tuesday’s announcement sparked an immediate backlash from the gun lobby and Tallahassee lawmakers who advocate those laws. Only federal and state governments, they say, can set gun standards because of the Firearms Preemption Law.