There are times I think I’ll never be able to say, “I’ve seen it all.”, but this news item takes the cake. Incredible as it may seem the State of Florida recently passed a law allowing employees to bring guns to work. Yes I’m not kidding. Effective July 1, 2008 employees are allowed to bring guns to work as long as they leave them inside their vehicles. Man I’ve got a splitting headache on this one. Mark Toth of Manpower outlines the story on his Manpower or North America blog. As the Chief Legal Officer he’s got his hands full on this one.
“This law and others like it put the employer in the horrible position of having to decide whether to potentially (1) violate the law or (2) fail to take adequate steps to ensure workplace safety. My guess is that many employers in Disney’s position would have done the exact same thing. Which would you rather face: a potential lawsuit from a disgruntled employee or the prospect of gun violence in the workplace?”
I recall in the 1980’s someone publishing a story about how many lawyers were in the legislature implying we would all be better off if elected officials were less schooled in the law. Thirty years have come and gone and today we have very few lawyers in the legislature. Ordinarily common sense tells us that having a high degree of skill from an education is a good thing. But in this instance it seemed that people thought being schooled in the law somehow made a lawyer less qualified to pass laws. Well, time marched on and today we have laws being passed without regard to the greater impact. In this instance allowing employees to bring guns to work was probably a reaction to “going Postal” in the work place. It may in some sense make a person feel safer but in many ways it’s just adding to the insanity of the workplace environment. Workers have enough to worry about with just getting their work done, but now they have to contend with the potential for a gun-battle taking place. We need more lawyers in the legislature, not less. We need more common sense as well.