Randolph Bracy proposes mental health checks for gun purchases

Randolph Bracy
Bracy says it's time to try new ideas in gun legislation.

Saying he wants to pursue a new track to address gun violence, Ocoee Sen. Randolph Bracy Friday proposed requiring mental health assessments for people buying guns.

Bracy said he will introduce a bill with that and two other proposed requirements if Democrats succeed in forcing a Special Session on restrictive gun law reforms or if Republicans call a Special Session on open-carry of guns.

Bracy, who is running for Congress in Florida’s 10th Congressional District, said he is tiring of gun violence proposals that go nowhere. Bracy has sponsored bans on assault weapons for several years, but the bills died early.

He said it’s time to start considering new ideas. He sent a letter Friday to all other lawmakers laying out his ideas.

“I think there may be a Special Session,” he said.

His new proposal, he said, seeks to address Republicans’ common argument that mental health problems are the root case of mass shootings like those in the past month in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Uvalde, Texas, and Buffalo, and previous ones in Parkland, Las Vegas, Orlando, and elsewhere.

At the same time, he said he believes his proposal represents a meaningful move that Democrats could support to reduce gun violence.

“At this point, Democrats and Republicans have been so far apart, something has to be done,” Bracy said. “So I’m proposing a three-point plan that I believe Democrats and Republicans can come together on.”

His points:

— A mental-health assessment test for anyone buying a gun. It would be sent to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), which could choose to follow up.

— A moral character affidavit signed by two people who know the gun buyer, attesting whether the person is in good standing to handle the responsibilities of a gun. Bracy said the statement would be similar to one needed by applicants wishing to become police officers. “It also can be a way for a person to alert FDLE that a person is buying a gun,” Bracy said.

— An impulse control or anger management class. “This would allow a person to be aware of their own impulses,” Bracy said.

“I think these are small steps. Would these curb violence to the point that we want to? No. But it is a start,” he added. “And I’m getting so frustrated where we do not have any progress or movement in any legislation,” he said.

Bracy is among Democrats who have already asked for a Special Session on gun violence.

“Without concrete action, we will see continued violence, which will have devastating consequences for the people we serve in Tallahassee,” he wrote in a letter sent to Secretary of State Cord Byrd Friday.

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].


  • PeterH

    June 3, 2022 at 5:42 pm

    I find it irresponsible that the media fails to ask pertinent legal questions regarding this ‘mental health evaluations’ fake NRA talking point.

    The idea that a psychologist or psychiatrist will divulge confidential and protected client – doctor discussions to enable or discourage a gun purchase is absolutely absurd.

    Pursuing this strategy as a viable ‘safe gun’ option is the ultimate false promise.

  • Special session here we come

    June 3, 2022 at 7:34 pm

    Hm m m m. . .considering the number of people killed by drunk drivers, something similar for the issuance of a driver license and for the purchase of an automobile, such tests to be performed at the dealership and sent to the DMV for evaluation.
    Considering the number of spouse abuse cases. . .at the marriage license office, with sworn affidavits from the applicants minister. Sound good? Considering the number of babies who have died before birth in the last half century, a full psychological workup for a woman seeking an abortion–and the agreement of the child’s father. Sounds like a plan.

  • YYep

    June 4, 2022 at 10:33 am

    Actually it could be discrimination through judgement.we already have these laws in place and a note from the doctor

  • Yeah

    June 5, 2022 at 10:11 am

    You can not predict any violence through a check up you can not even diagnose a problem in one sitting.

    • Yeah

      June 5, 2022 at 5:26 pm

      Opportunist and the break up of American business might be a pority 1 rebuilding what was lost.not what is expected

  • Yeah

    June 5, 2022 at 5:58 pm

    Seriously I do not think the gangs are included

  • Nancy

    June 5, 2022 at 6:23 pm

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  • Charles

    June 6, 2022 at 11:23 am

    So, the Demorats murder of millions of babies each year in the name of abortion just because they don’t want them or be bothered. But Republicans are blamed for gun violence which they have nothing to do with. Taking guns from people will only punish law abiding gun owners and the Demorats know this. Criminals don’t obey the law so are not affected by any kind of gun laws. That is why they call them criminals!

Comments are closed.


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