Anna Eskamani’s guns post draws wildfire of responses
Anna Eskamani posted this picture on her Facebook page and recevied more than 1,200 comments.

Anna Eksmanai
"I always say that for every act of intimdation, our courage only rises," Eskamani said.

Traitor. B*tch. C*nt. Treasonous politician. Clueless. Ugly. Socialist. Nazi. Dimwit. Uneducated fool. Embarrassing. P*ssy. Disgrace. Sheep. Iranian who needs to go back to the sh*thole you came from. Sorry ass snowflake. Stupid. Anti-American. Evil. Racist Democrat. Someone with ugly eyebrows.

Quite a few people didn’t like it when Democratic state Rep. Anna Eskamani posted a Facebook picture Saturday afternoon of herself signing the proposed “Ban Assault Weapons Now” amendment to the Florida Constitution.

“So much vitriol,” she said Monday.

Eskamani posted the item Saturday afternoon with the caption, “Signing the Ban Assault Weapons Now (#BAWN) ballot amendment petition! ‬‪#HD47 is home to #Pulse nightclub — we know that military style assault weapons have no place in the hands of everyday civilians. #NeverAgain.”

She’s gotten quite a response.

More than 1,200 comments had arrived on the Facebook post by Monday mid-afternoon. Her post was shared more than 430 times. She also received more than 70 direct messages via Facebook.

The vast majority of the comments and direct messages — clearly more than 1,000 of the comments — were intended to tell Eskamani what she could do with such a proposal. More than a few spared no profanity in drawing that picture.

“Despite the fact that the Republican Party of Florida thinks I’m vulgar [an issue brought up in the 2018 election campaign], some of these words are even hard for me to say,” she said.

Eskamani is no stranger to taking stands on controversial issues, or using social media to promote her positions, or dropping the occasional swear word. And she said she’s always seen the gun issue as something that attracts plenty attention.

But she said she’s never seen a reaction like this.

“It was quite instantaneous, and it was very focused on Facebook. I posted the same photo on Instagram and on Twitter and it was very unique that it got this type of attention on Facebook,” she said.

Many of the commenters offered points of debate, principally arguing that the Second Amendment protects sales and possession of weapons such as AR-15s and AK-47s; or that they don’t kill as many people as other guns, or cars, or drugs, or booze or bicycles; or that there’s no legally practical way to ban them without opening bans of other weapons.

At one point Eskamani added her own comment, trying to clarify that all she was doing was adding her signature to a proposed Florida constitutional amendment petition that needs about 800,000 signatures to appear on the statewide ballot, and then would need 60 percent statewide voter approval to become law.

She pointed out that the amendment is being pushed by a bipartisan group. But by that time it was like throwing a bucket of water at a wildfire. The commentary backlash was out of control.

Some were hostile. Quite a few offered subtle tough-guy threats, as in suggesting she personally try to come get their guns, or telling her what they’d like to do to her if they met her. More than a few predicted another civil war was on the way in America, and they assured her that she would be on the losing side. Others promised to buy more guns and ammunition in her honor, or to make “ghost guns” [guns without serial numbers for her sake], and more than one even promised to name one after her.

Eskamani occasionally responded to the comments, as with the guy who promised to name his next ghost gun after her. “Great name!” she replied. “Make sure you pronounce it with a soft A.”

Others belittled her looks. The guy who insulted her eyebrows got a response from Eskamani: “Wow, calling me names and insulting my eyebrows. Well done.”

Other insults, she said, were racist [going after her for being the daughter of Iranian immigrants] and many were misogynist, belittling her for being a woman, or making fun of her body or face. Generally, she did not respond directly to those.

“I am reminded that for generations women who are bold and unapologetic are always facing backlash. I always say that for every act of intimidation, our courage only rises,” she said. “This is a reminder to me to be prepared for backlash, and to make sure our team is safe.”

Her office attempted to trace a few of the comments and found a few aliases. A large percentage came from outside Florida, she said.

Eskamani is a progressive Democrat and an avowed feminist, and her position on guns isn’t likely to change. She said her commitment is grounded as her response to the 2016 massacre at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub, which is in the district she was elected to represent in November.

It’s a result of “knowing there are 49 people who are no longer here because it was a military style assault weapon that took their lives,” Eskamani said. “Plus 17 in Parkland, and many, many more.”

While proclaiming she will not be intimidated, Eskamani said she fears that many other lawmakers likely are.

“I hope we can have real dialogue on this issue this session, but I will say the response on my Facebook post speaks to the challenge that Democrats and Republicans face when we talk about gun safety. It is so polarizing. There are those around us who go out of their way to intimidate and harass, which squashes the opportunity for conversation,” Eskamani said. “I won’t let it happen to us. But I can only imagine for some lawmakers who wish to avoid that kind of attention try to avoid even breaching the conversation.”

Scott Powers

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at [email protected]


16 comments

  • Bill Kaser

    January 21, 2019 at 8:04 pm

    She says she wants real dialogue, but to her (like other gun control proponents) that dialogue is one-way: they want to talk about banning guns and preventing access. She won’t listen to reason, data, and facts. Schools are safer today than they were 30 years ago. Rifles kill fewer than 350 annually, on average. Mass shootings are exceedingly rare, even in the U.S. These are all irrefutable fact.- but quite the opposite gets pushed by Rep Eskamani and the Anytown for Gun Safety ilk.

    My objection to her signing the ballot initiative is that it is illegal – you can not ban weapons commonly in use regardless of how you feel about them. The U.S. Constitution and Supreme Court have said so.

  • Alyssa

    January 21, 2019 at 9:05 pm

    What she is proposing and signed to attempt to be on the ballot is in contrast to the Constitution. The same Constitution that she swore to uphold. If she is unable to fulfill her oath of office, then she should step down from her position of office.

    Semi automatic sporting rifles are in very common use and account for less than 400 deaths a year (This includes hunting accidents and suicide). The country has a population of nearly 350 million so this is less than 0.000114% of the population. Also, of total gun deaths (of which the vast majority are suicide) rifles account for 1.3% of the 30,000 people killed each year. More people die from hand to hand fights and hammers than from common sporting rifles.

    This proposal and all that sign it refuse to even listen to facts and thus I say they can all go pound sand.

    Sincerely,
    Step Mom, Wife, Former Military, Hunter, and 2nd Amendment Constitutionalist.

  • Lee

    January 22, 2019 at 12:21 am

    Another hoplophobic gun grabbing political hack. She’s in good company.The most vociferous militant anti gun nuts tend to have serious ethical and legal issues of their own. And it’s the same as it ever was. One of the first pieces of gun control legislation, the Sullivan Laws of NY in 1911. What the gun grabbers don’t tell you is who those laws are named for. Big Tim Sullivan, a Tammany Hall kingpin even more corrupt than the Clintons. He wanted to make the streets of NYC safe, for him and cronies as well as the muggers and gangsters in his back pocket. Charles Rangel, never mind his tax evasion issues. That POS should’ve been arrested for obstructing justice, if not aiding and abetting in the murder of NYPD Officer Phillip Cardillo. Here’s a doozy, fmr Cong Leeland Yee, frined of Shannon Watts, aka gun control Barbie, who introduced legislation that would’ve effectively nullified the 2A. He was forced to resign because he’s in fed prison for..GUN RUNNING! Remember Bernie Ward, the gun hating left wing talk show host sensation who was gonna put Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hanntiy in their place? He’s spending the rest of his life as a registered sex offender after doing time for kiddie porn. And speaking of pervs, Ed Murray, fmr mayor of Seattle and charter member of Everytown for Gun sense declined top seek re election. Could it be because he’s under investigation for molesting a bunch of boys including his 9 yr old cousin? The Gun Violence Death clock put up near Times Sq. The funding for that stunt came from Robert Brennan, a junk bond dealing scam artist who makes Bernie Madoff look like Mother Theresa. He had just got out of the joint for securities fraud and other such niceties. I’m sure he had a pragmatic reason for this public service. Hey, if I scammed all those old folks out of their life savings, I too would be scared out of my wits if they, their kids or grandkids had easy access to firearms. Just sayin’ And the hits just keep on coming! Kenneth Glasgow, a gun control activist currently cooling his heels in the Dothan, AL lockup facing capital murder charges. Seems after speaking at a march for our lives rally in Birmingham he hooked up with a bunch of other thugs, one of whom shot a woman with an ILLEGALLY OBTAINED handgun. These are just the tip of the iceberg.

  • Josh

    January 22, 2019 at 7:45 am

    What did she learn? Nothing because she’s not an actual representative of the people, just her self interests.

  • The Rich Logis Show

    January 22, 2019 at 11:19 am

    The Pulse nightclub shooting was committed by a jihadist.

    Eskamani and the rest of the Democrat anti-gun cult continue to whitewash Omar Mateen’s radical Islamic allegiance out of his life story.

    It is correct that Pulse was an incident of gun violence, but that would mean 9/11 was an incident of airplane violence.

    Any amendment would fail if placed on the ballot. And even if passed, it will eventually be overturned by our State Supreme Court, U.S. District Court, U.S. Court of Appeals, or the United States Supreme Court.

    Our U.S. Constitution protects our guaranteed rights against a tyranny of the majority. Furthermore, our 10th Amendment does not give any state the legal authority to infringe upon any Constitutional right. Eskamani (probably) knows this, but the dupe dopes who elected her don’t.

    Florida Democrats lost two major elections this past November, and remain the minority party in our legislature. We—the majority, winning side—don’t need to work with the minority, losing side; the losing side needs to work with us, because elections aren’t popularity contests—elections have consequences, as President Obama famously told the Americans, in 2009, who didn’t vote for he.

  • John

    January 22, 2019 at 5:49 pm

    I don’t know if it’s sad or adorable that the ammosexuals always forget the very first part of the Second Amendment. What is it about “A Well Regulated Militia” that you don’t understand? When it’s easier to buy an assault rifle than it is to get a driver’s license or to buy a beer, that is just plain crazy. Not only am I for background checks, I want there to be gun owner’s insurance.

    • Tom Reynolds

      January 23, 2019 at 12:27 pm

      In the parlance of the day it was written, “Well-regulated” meant “Well-trained and equipped” and “Militia” meant a state (not federal) army made up of citizen soldiers.

      And it is quite obvious that you have never tried to buy any type of firearm, let alone a mythical “assault rifle”, so you should probably not make stupid assumptions about doing so.

      We already have background checks, thank you, and requiring gun owners’ insurance is just your way of preventing poor people from legally owning firearms. Again, no thank you.

    • Roger Mellville

      January 23, 2019 at 10:57 pm

      And you “John Doe” are part of the problem. We already have all those laws on the books. Do they prevent gun violence by criminals? No. Do they prevent criminals from illegally obtaining their firearms? No. All the gun grabbers like you do is make it more difficult for law abiding citizens like me to protect myself. You care more about the criminals than their victims. You will change your tune when you are confronted with an armed criminal and are told the police will arrive in 15 minutes–14 minutes after you and your family are killed. And God help you if the bad guy is gay….So, by all means, “Mr” John Doe, keep to your narrative.

    • JLP

      January 26, 2019 at 7:50 am

      SMH when the term “assault riffle” is used. You’re either uninformed or trolling, which is it?

    • The American Majority

      January 26, 2019 at 8:28 pm

      Dear Dimbulb John,

      Neither driver licenses nor alcohol are established as rights in the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights but the right to bear arms is. Let me clue you in on something. It’s not the tenth, ninth, eighth, seventh, sixth, fifth, fouth or third right documented.

      Regards,
      The American Majority

  • Tom Reynolds

    January 23, 2019 at 12:30 pm

    I spite of all the garbage claimed by those wishing additional gun regulations, there is no proof that these laws will prevent any gun violence.

  • Stan

    January 26, 2019 at 2:28 am

    She’s stupid and a wannabe tyrant . You can’t act surprised when people reject someone like her. This is normal.

  • Robert Adams

    January 26, 2019 at 5:11 am

    banning guns has nothing to do with gun safety that is the buzz word anti-civil rights gun banners use. I guess she is also a self proclaimed feminist , so she hates men. Giving more power to the State and less too the People is never the answer. Evil does not care about a law, and politicians always attack the lawful for what criminals do. The AR-15 is the most common rifle sold and there are millions and millions out there. It has become America’s Rifle and you want to ban it. You should read the Bill of Rights!

  • st381183

    January 26, 2019 at 8:18 am

    It’s funny how offended the left gets when the vitriol is directed at them and how supportive and encouraging the left is when the vitriol is spat at us 2A supporting law abiding citizens. With that said, hurling insults at this rights stealing politician only deflects the issue to be about her hurt feelings.

    Gun control is not about the guns, it’s about CONTROL. You need not fear the citizens if they have the inability to fight back.

  • Bill Brandon

    January 26, 2019 at 9:03 am

    Name calling and insults? Sounds like what socialists like her normally do to conservatives.

  • Bunda

    January 27, 2019 at 10:06 am

    There has been a rash of liberal politicians in several states introducing draconian anti 2A bills this year. There has been a lot of backlash and a lot of gun owners vowing refusal to comply. Eventually there will be a clash…hopefully it will be gun owners versus these have wit liberal politicians..

Comments are closed.


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