INFLUENCING THE MEDIA? Reporter Makes Inaccurate Statements About the Florida Sheriffs Association and Their Opposition to the Second Amendment

Florida_Sheriffs_Association_LogoIt seems like the Florida Sheriffs Association wants to control you, me, our guns and the media.  What next?  The Legislature?  Or do they think they already control them?

On Wednesday, 5/7/14, an article appeared in the Daytona Beach News-Journal titled Flagler County sheriff discusses sensible gun control.” 

We read it.  It didn’t surprise us.  The article said Flagler Sheriff Jim Manfre was asked to be a guest speaker at an event to “address the concerns of the Florida Sheriffs Association.”

Manfre is quoted as saying sheriffs and police chiefs are concerned about “what type of weapons are out there and who has them.”

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It reported that Manfre said that one thing he and many other law enforcement officials would like to see in terms of “sensible gun control” is a “ban on assault weapons.”  “In my opinion,” he said, “there is no reason to have an assault weapon.”

The article goes on to report that the “FSA also would like to see regulations implemented for gun sales that take place outside of licensed gun dealerships, according to Manfre. While licensed gun dealers must now conduct a background screening before selling to a customer, there are no regulations regarding private sales.”

Sheriff Manfre is reported to have summarized two pieces of legislation from this past session — one that failed and one that passed.  However, neither description of the bills was accurate.

Perhaps sheriffs who don’t have time to read and analyze pending legislation are not being provided with accurate information.  That would certainly explain why some of the normally pro-gun sheriffs were opposed the “mandatory evacuation” bill, because we certainly have seen the misinformation spread about that bill.

Nonetheless, we put the article aside to include in our next Alert or Report.  But, yesterday we got an email from a lobbyist for the Florida Sheriffs Association.


The email alerts me to their “view” of the article in the Daytona Beach News-Journal.  The email says “the reporter made a number of inaccurate statements (and never spoke to a representative authorized to speak for the Association) which mischaracterize the position of the FSA on various gun issues.”

Further the email said that FSA’s head honcho, “Steve Casey spoke to the reporter and the editor today and asked that they correct these inaccuracies immediately. The FSA will also be sending a letter to the editor.”

Let’s get this straight:  the reporter was at the event and reported on what was said by Sheriff Manfre.  However, according to the email, it was the reporter — not the Sheriff — who made a number of inaccurate statements that mischaracterize the Florida Sheriffs Association on various gun issues.

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