The Florida Times-Union, Jacksonville, on the state Stand Your Ground law:
The more people who are packing heat, the more likely that minor confrontations will turn deadly.
Such killings are all the more likely in Florida, which has issued more than 900,000 permits to carry concealed weapons, far more than any other state.
In 2005, Florida became the first state to pass a Stand Your Ground law, which appears to have intensified the climate that has led to the nickname "Gunshine State."
Gov. Rick Scott and the Legislature should revise or repeal the Stand Your Ground law, but that appears unlikely anytime soon.
It is clear that the law is being misinterpreted on a grand scale.
Carrying guns in public is encouraged by the rhetoric, the myths and the lunatic notions that are generated by the gun manufacturing industry, which profits when gun sales go up.
Some people carry a gun out of fear — even though crime is the lowest it has been in decades.
Others buy and carry guns for many other reasons, seemingly with little regard for the potential consequences.
Few should have been surprised at the events that unfolded when 45-year-old Michael Dunn, in town for his son's wedding, happened upon 17-year-old Jordan Russell Davis and some other youths who were playing loud music in an SUV at a Gate station on Southside Boulevard.
Words were exchanged, the teenager was slain in a hail of bullets and now Dunn is in jail charged with second-degree murder and three counts of attempted murder.
One obvious question, which a jury may get to consider, is whether Dunn acted differently because he had his gun. Many of us are annoyed by loud music in vehicles, but most of us simply endure it and move on.
Does it seem reasonable that a person armed with a gun might be more emboldened to approach the SUV and complain or make inflammatory remarks?
And does the Stand Your Ground law further embolden some who carry guns? …
This comes soon after Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll released the draft report of the Governor's Task Force on Citizen Safety and Protection, which was ordered by Scott in the wake of outcry over the Trayvon Martin killing by George Zimmerman in Sanford. …
The two cases have in common that when people carry guns and get into garden-variety altercations, then all-too-often somebody dies, somebody goes to jail and lives are destroyed. …
Lives are being lost because of a bad law.