Florida lawmakers shot down an amendment on Monday that would have banned semi-automatic “assault” weapons like the AR-15 used in the Parkland school massacre.
They did, however, agree to raise the legal age for purchasing a firearm to 21 — and approved legislation that would give teachers the right to carry guns in school, NBC-2 reports.
The amendments were introduced as part of a packaged set of bills being offered up following Nikolas Cruz’ alleged shooting spree at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
Florida’s Senate Rules Committee spent more than two hours debating the gun-control issues before eventually casting their votes, according to NBC.
Senators also agreed to confiscate guns from people with mental health issues, in addition to raising the legal buying age and giving teachers the right to carry.
A similar packaged set of reforms is scheduled to be taken up by the House Rules Committee on Tuesday.
The meetings come as more and more people continue to show their support for stricter gun-control laws, many of whom own weapons themselves.
Hundreds of activists and students turned out in Tallahassee last week — including survivors of the Parkland massacre — to call on lawmakers to act.
Many gathered at the Capitol on Monday to show their support for the assault weapons amendment, which was rejected by a 7-6 vote.
“Shame, shame, shame!” some of the activists shouted, according to News 13.
The fact that teachers could soon be allowed to carry firearms inside schools wasn’t sitting well with gun-control supporters, either.
“It bothers me to think as a father of two young boys to tell them to not be aggressive to your teacher,” said Sen. Oscar Branynon (D-Miami Gardens).
The lawmaker told the Sun Sentinel that he and other black fathers across Florida will now have to include teachers when talking to their children about how to act around armed authority figures.
“Please don’t make it dangerous for children who look like my children to go to school,” he said.
The Senate’s proposed legislation is slated to go through its second and final committee on Tuesday before being voted on later in the week.
If passed, the bills will have to be signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott.
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