Who is Jack Hagler? Why is he mentioned in this law, the Jack Hagler Self Defense Act?

I tried to find out information but nothing relevant came up.



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Clyde H. (Jack) Hagler was a Democrat representative in the Florida State House for District 3, first elected in 1974. He 'crusaded' to have Florida's gun laws relaxed and served until 1982.

He died in 1984, and it appears the Jack Hagler Self Defense Act, passed in 1987, was named in his memory / in honour of him at the instigation of a "close friend and fellow lawmaker", Ron Johnson.

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"Representatives are (L-R): Jerry G. Melvin, Smokey Peaden, Grover C. Robinson III, Jack Hagler, Ed Fortune." Source: Florida Memory

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"Portrait of Florida legislative representative Jack Hagler" (1980). Source: Florida Memory

Rep. Hagler served on the House Health and Rehabilitation Services Committee. Other than that, there appears to be very little about him online except for this brief (and very hard to read) bio in the document Politically speaking : a statewide election guide for Florida in the University of Florida Digital Collection:

Clyde H. Hagler, 60 [sic], Democrat from Pensacola, born and raised in Escambia County; Graduate of the Citadel (BS); C.P.A; elected to House of Representatives in 1974 and subsequently; married, three children.

The 'and subsequently' above refers to him being re-elected in 1976, 1978 and 1980. Also, the age is wrong, as evidenced by his grave stone in Bayview Memorial Park. His wife, Beverly Rabb Hagler, died in 2012 (more info here).

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Source: Find a Grave

As to why his name was attached to the bill, a March 1987 article in the Orlando Sentinel has this:

When Jack Hagler, a state representative from Pensacola, was dying of cancer three years ago, he asked a close friend and fellow lawmaker to continue his crusade to relax Florida's gun laws.

Rep. Ron Johnson, a Democrat from nearby Panama City, appears ready to fulfill that promise. It's almost a foregone conclusion that Johnson will succeed in relaxing gun restrictions during this year's legislative session, which begins April 7.

Thus, it would appear that bill was named in memory of him and "his crusade to relax Florida's gun laws." The act was signed into law on October 9, 1987.

The Concealed Weapons Act

is named the Jack Hagler Self Defense Act, and replaces by amendment section 790.06 and repeals section 790.05 of the Florida Statutes. Section 790.06 describes how a license to carry a concealed weapon is procured while section 790.05 provided penalties for carrying weapons either openly or concealed without a license.

The Act authorizes the Department of State "to issue licenses to carry concealed weapons or concealed firearms to persons qualified as provided in this section."

The act was passed at the same time as the Joe Carlucci Uniform Firearms Act which

declared “all ordinances and regulations null and void which have been enacted by any jurisdictions other than state and federal, which regulate firearms, ammunition, or components thereof.”

Joe Carlucci

was an avid hunter who became the National Rifle Association’s Legislator of the Year in 1984.

Two years later, at the age of 57, he died of a heart attack while hunting in Georgia.

His colleagues in the Florida Senate marked his passing by naming a bill in his honor

  • Interesting that he was Florida House only until 1980. 4 years lobbying plus 3 years til name attached to law? What did he do in the meantime. Also: isn't it Escambia County Pensacola? Dec 19, 2019 at 16:04
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    Although the citadel link says 80, WP says 82, hadn't much use of given name and seems to have been a quiet type Dec 19, 2019 at 16:57
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    @LаngLаngС Thanks very much for the edit. Yes, does seem to have been a quiet type - this question was difficult to google. The Citadel date (until 1980) is wrong (I found a source to backup Wiki). Dec 20, 2019 at 0:42
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    What I keep wondering is why his name is so well hidden on the web. No association with NRA that I found, law named after him because he "crusaded" (only orally?). As House member ea must have held the occasional speech, campigned for election, interviews, opened a kindergarten or whatnot. Very mysterious. Dec 20, 2019 at 0:51
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    @LаngLаngС I googled NRA and turned up nothing on that but ,strangely, that's when I found the gravestone I just edited in. Also, he's not listed among the distinguished Citadel alumni. I did find one footnote on a house vote where he's mentioned, but nothing to do with gun control. I'll do a little more searching as some results seem well-buried (the Orlando Sentinel article turned up on page 5 of google results). Most puzzling is that I can't find an obituary (maybe behind paywalls?). Dec 20, 2019 at 1:01

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