Sunday, February 15, 2009

Upcoming Gun Laws

The G.O.A. has posted a mercifully short list of the proposed gun laws before the current congress. Don't get your hopes up just because the list is short. The day, as they say, is young yet. These things range from helpful to downright stupid, to malignant.
Here's the current crop:

H.R. 17 (Bartlett): This bill would reaffirm the right to use firearms for self-defense and for defense of one’s home and family.

If you contact your congress critters on this one, point out to them that the right to life sort of implies a right to defend it, especially if it's your own. Otherwise a vote against this bill is a vote to help protect the working environment for thugs.

H.R. 45 (Rush): This bill would require a license for handguns and semiautomatics, including those currently possessed. The applicant must be thumbprinted and sign a certification that, effectively, the firearm will not be kept in a place where it would be available for the defense of the gun owner’s family. The applicant must also make available ALL of his psychiatric records, pass an exam, and pay a fee of up to $25. The license may be renewed after five years and may be revoked. Private sales would be outlawed, and reports to the attorney general of all transactions would be required, even when, as the bill allows, the AG determines that a state licensing system is sufficiently draconian to substitute for the federal license. With virtually no exceptions, ALL firearms transactions (involving semiautos, handguns, long guns, etc.) would be subject to a Brady check. In addition, the bill would make it unlawful in nearly all cases to keep any loaded firearm for self-defense. A variety of “crimes by omission” (such as failure to report certain things) would be created. Criminal penalties of up to ten years and almost unlimited regulatory and inspection authority would be established.

This one is the malignant one. If you want a compendium of gun laws on this continent, go here, and note that practically all of them are aimed at disarming minorities. Point out to your congressman that the "Ol' white sheet" doesn't care what color the fellow underneath it is.

H.R. 197 (Stearns): This bill would establish national standards for concealed carry reciprocity, but would not protect residents of pro-gun states like Vermont and Alaska which do not require paper permits.

This is a good one. The bit about Alaska and Vermont could easily be rectified by recognizing a drivers license from either state as a permit to carry, which it pretty much is.

H.R. 442 (Rehberg): This bill would provide amnesty for a veteran who acquired a “souvenir” (such as a machine gun) while serving overseas, so long as it is registered during a 90-day grace period.

The government is aware that a number of souvenir firearms came back from various wars without being declared, and they would like to have a complete registry of all of them. I'm ambivalent on this one. If cousin Charlie smuggled an AK back from Viet Nam, so what. He should have every right to posses it, and it's none of the governments business.

H.R. 495 (Rodriguez, Teague, Engel, Reyes): This bill would authorize $15,000,000

Any normal, red-blooded American should not need to read any further that this before reaching for the tar bucket.

for two years to the BATFE

And fix up a torch, and check for a nice piece of hemp rope.

for the purpose of enhancing its project to thwart the transportation of firearms across the Mexican border.

The authors have been listening to the Mexican government and the Brady bunch who are proclaiming that absent a closing of the "gun show loophole", the Mexican narcotrafficantes are visiting the US where they buy machine guns and grenades at the gun shows with no questions asked. The US press is willing to print this as gospel. The desertion rate in the Mexican army, who has, or had a lot of this stuff, never seems to come up in this discussion.

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