Below the Radar: H Res 101

H/T AmmoLand.

There is a link at the end of this article to contact your House member to voice your support for H Res 101.

United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- You may wonder why we are taking time from actual bills to instead cover a House resolution. We did cover one House resolution and one Senate resolution at times earlier this year, though, and we did so because while they didn’t have the force of law, they could still tilt the playing field – and voting for or against them means elected officials are taking a stand.

That is why H Res 1013 is important for Second Amendment supporters. This resolution, introduced by Representative Russ Fulcher (R-ID), not only expresses some common sense, but it also could put anti-Second Amendment extremists in a bit of a tough spot. Fulcher is in his first term in the House of Representatives, and this resolution is a very promising sign that he is not only going to be a reliable supporter of our rights, but also a skilled tactician in the advancement and defense of those rights.

Reading the text reveals just what Fulcher has done in support of the Second Amendment during this turbulent time. As many left-wing mayors and city councils cut or disband police departments, they have turned around and pushed for more gun control as violent crime rose. See Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot as one case in point (in the case of Chicago, enforcing current federal laws could do much to end the violence).

But even when fully funded, the old maxim that when seconds count, the police are minutes away has been proven time and time again. It will be even more true when left-wing politicians slash the police budget. This reality – one that anyone with common sense – is what Fulcher’s resolution addressed.

It simply states that it is the “sense of the House of Representatives” that any jurisdiction that cuts police budgets or which shuts down police departments should not be adding “undue restrictions” on the right to keep and bear arms, and in fact should remove them. What are “undue restrictions?” Fulcher points to the Heller and McDonald rulings in the resolution, and this is where a floor vote on this resolution would put anti-Second Amendment extremists in a tough spot.

A close reading of Heller would note that it extends the protection to firearms that are commonly used for lawful purposes. This would include modern multi-purpose semiautomatic long guns and the standard-capacity magazines they use. So, in essence, the House adopting this resolution would tell places that are cutting cops to also get rid of semiauto bans, among other infringements – all so that people could protect themselves since defunded cops would likely take longer to respond.

Of course, opposing the resolution could easily be used to paint anti-Second Amendment extremists as unconcerned about people’s safety. They defund the cops, take away your rights, and what is left to protect you? Not much.

Second Amendment supporters have the chance to find out how their Representatives stand on this issue. They should not hesitate to contact their Congressman (or Congresswoman, as the case may be), politely urge them to support H Res 1013.

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Below The Radar: Background Check Completion Act of 2020

H/T AmmoLand.

There is a link to Congress at the end of this article.

United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- Sometimes, Second Amendment supporters do not need a lengthy discourse to show their fellow gun owners just how unreasonable anti-Second Amendment extremists are. Sometimes, it takes less than a half-dozen pieces of paper. Sound crazy? No, it isn’t.

Here’s how you can do it. First, you just need to print out the GPO’s official version of S 4068, the Background Check Completion Act of 2020, introduced by Senator Richard Blumenthal, who has long had a record of attacking our Second Amendment rights. That takes two pages. Then you can print out the text of 18 USC 922(t), which covers the National Instant Check System (NICS). That takes three pages for just that section (all of 18 USC 922 runs about 28 pages).

With those five pieces of paper, you can prove that anti-Second Amendment extremists are lying when they say they claim to support the Second Amendment, but just want “reasonable” restrictions. Reading the text of S 4068, it makes a small deletion but causes a massive shift for those who are trying to exercise their rights.

Under current law, if NICS cannot be completed in three business days, a federally licensed dealer can still transfer a firearm. While the setup of NICS is not ideal, the current setup has several points that make it much fairer than various licensing and waiting period schemes:

  • It presumes that someone seeking to buy a firearm is law-abiding.
  • It places the burden to deny a firearms transaction on the government.
  • It also does not subject someone trying to exercise their rights into an indefinite wait.

Blumenthal’s bill changes that. It removes the three business day limit on a delay. In other words, if there is a delay for whatever reason (NICS is down, confusion), a law-abiding citizen is denied the right to purchase a firearm until the delay gets resolved, and without the time limit, that can be potential for some serious, life-threatening abuse.

Imagine what IRS workers under Lois Lerner did to the Tea Party’s applications for tax-exempt status being applied to firearm purchases run through NICS. The injustices faced by potentially millions of law-abiding gun owners (especially when demand for firearms shoots through the roof, as it has in recent weeks) would be appalling. Worse, the tragedy of Carol Bowne would be repeated across the entire country. And many of those trying to infringe on our Second Amendment rights claim they stand with women.

But in Blumenthal’s mind, that’s all okay. Because to him, gun ownership isn’t a right – it’s a privilege that should be determined by the government. Second Amendment supporters should contact their Senators and Representative and urge them to oppose S 4068.

Below The Radar: Help Empower Americans To Respond Act

H/T AmmoLand.

There is a link at the end of this article to contact your House and Senate member.

United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- Anti-Second Amendment extremists have a lot of disregard for those Americans who exercise their Second Amendment rights. If they aren’t trying to ban guns, they are trying to otherwise make life difficult for any law-abiding American who either owns a gun or wants to do so.

The difficulty doesn’t just come with restrictions on firearms. It can also include targeting accessories, including heavily regulated ones like suppressors. Under the National Firearms Act, suppressors (often called silencers) are subject to a $200 tax, and a lengthy process to make or transfer. In fact, the process of getting a suppressor is what many anti-Second Amendment extremists want to inflict on any American who wishes to own a firearm.

But that just isn’t enough for some. One of those who thinks the NFA’s process is too lax is Representative Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), who has introduced HR 3454, the Help Empower Americans to Respond Act. So, what is she proposing? She’s taken the Eric Swalwell approach on modern multi-purpose semiautomatic firearms and applied it to suppressors. In plain English, she wants a total ban on any civilian ownership. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) has introduced S 1943, a companion bill in the Senate.

We’ve covered a past piece of legislation that Representative Coleman introduced, the Handgun Licensing and Registration Act, and it showed the same desire for sweeping restrictions on Second Amendment rights targeting people who had done nothing wrong. In this case, the misuse of a suppressor in Virginia Beach last year is being used at the pretext for a “Mr. and Mrs. America, turn them all in” moment.

Oh, Coleman will graciously grant a 90-day grace period to turn them in, and there will be a “buyback” of the civilian silencers. But the facts make this bill an injustice targeting Americans for punishment for crimes and acts of madness they didn’t commit. And the injustice is compounded by the fact there are laws on the books to address the misuse of suppressors.

The fact is, the misuse of suppressors already can land someone in prison for at least 30 years under the provisions of 18 USC 924(c). Plus, there is the rarity of suppressors even being misused. This is not surprising, just as it wasn’t surprising that we haven’t heard of flamethrowers being misused. Suppressors actually make firearms less concealable. That, and the already strict requirements to legally own one, make this bill nothing more than an injustice.

Second Amendment supporters need to contact their Senators and Representative and politely urge them to defeat HR 3454 and S 1943. Ask them to support legislation like the Protecting Communities and Preserving The Second Amendment Act to target the misuse of firearms and various accessories instead.

Below The Radar: Gun Owner Privacy Act

H/T AmmoLand.

There is a link at the end of this article to contact your members of Congress.

United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- With a lot of anti-Second Amendment extremists trying to get firearms registration by various back-door methods involving records from the National Instant Check System, it is worth noting that they are not the only ones pushing legislation involving NICS. To paraphrase Gandalf, there are forces at work in the halls of Congress besides those that hate the Second Amendment.

One of the bills Second Amendment supporters can turn to is S 4040, the Gun Owner Privacy Act. This was introduced by Senator Kelly Loeffler (R-GA). Loeffler replaced Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA), a Second Amendment champion who resigned due to Parkinson’s Disease. For being in office less than seven months, Loeffler’s already marking herself as a strong supporter of Second Amendment rights with this legislation.

When you look at the text, it carries some very strong provisions when it comes to addressing privacy concerns about NICS, especially when compared to the current text of 18 USC 922(t). Now, the current text requires the destruction of all records of transactions that don’t violate the law. The reason for that is clear: Those who are lawfully exercising constitutional rights should not have the government keeping records about said rights.

The Gun Owner Privacy Act adds a new section to 18 USC 922(t), which prohibits spending federal funds on any background check system that doesn’t immediately destroy records of transactions that don’t violate the law. This is huge – it eliminates any wiggle room for creating a back-door registration system. In fact, it is the polar opposite of Carolyn Maloney’s NICS Review Act.

But there is another benefit as well. Loeffler’s bill also prohibits charging any fee for the use of NICS. Again, we get down to a principle – people shouldn’t have to pay to be able to exercise a constitutional right. In a very real sense, this is akin to charging a poll tax so that people could vote. The poll tax was emphatically rejected with the 24th Amendment.

We should also note that the objections to ensuring the privacy of law-abiding gun owners are one of the biggest “tells” that you can get from anti-Second Amendment extremists, and objections to prohibiting a fee for using NICS run a close second as well. It isn’t just that they want to ban so-called “assault weapons,” they don’t think owning a firearm is a right at all.

When you look at some of the more “ambitious” proposals from Elizabeth WarrenSheila Jackson LeeCory Booker, or even Tammy Duckworth (who teamed up with Bobby Rush), that attitude is palpable in the number of hoops they want law-abiding citizens to jump through. The high crime rates in Baltimore, Chicago, and elsewhere that already have strict laws show that their agenda isn’t about safety.

Second Amendment supporters ought to contact their Senators and Representative to politely urge them to support passage of S 4040. The Gun Owner Privacy Act isn’t perfect, but it makes things much better for those who exercise their Second Amendment rights.

Below The Radar: Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act

H/T AmmoLand.

I have mixed feelings about this act both pro and con. 

There is a link at the end of this article to contact your member of Congress.

United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- Many Second Amendment supporters don’t follow the debate over the legalization of marijuana. For many, it doesn’t seem to register. But right now, some of the effects of that debate could impact people’s Second Amendment rights.

Put it this way – while some states have decriminalized even the recreational use of marijuana, the federal government has not. 21 USC 802(16) lists marijuana (spelled marihuana in the law) as a controlled substance, and it is listed among such substances that can get a person a felony drug conviction. Such a conviction means good-bye to your Second Amendment rights.

Under 18 USC 922, though, one doesn’t need to be convicted on a drug charge to get hit with a 10-year federal sentence. All one has to be is an unlawful user of a controlled substance. This can include marijuana, as this case in Iowa illustrates. The United States Concealed Carry Association has outlined a lot of that on its site.

Here, a number of normal Second Amendment champions have not really been moving on this issue. But Representative Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) has introduced HR 420, the Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act. This legislation takes marijuana and puts it on the same tier as alcohol with regards to federal regulation. The most important feature is that marijuana no longer becomes a controlled substance, which ends a lot of legal jeopardy for those who exercise their Second Amendment rights while using marijuana.

There will be a secondary bit of impact – the law renames the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Marijuana, Firearms, and Explosives. There is no indication that extra funds would be given to this agency to handle the extra workload that would result from adding pot to its jurisdiction. That is a mixed blessing.

On the one hand, the additional workload might mean that there would be less chance of harassment of Americans who wish to exercise their Second Amendment rights. Simply put, if ATF has to also regulate marijuana on the same basis as alcohol, they will be a lot busier, especially in the months and years as marijuana is transitioned from “controlled substance” status.

But there is a flip side: There may be fewer agents available to prosecute some real cases that involve the misuse of firearms. Put it this way, depending on a presidential administration’s priorities, we could see some gun laws that should be enforced not get enforced.

It should be noted Representative Blumenauer doesn’t have the best record on our rights. That said, HR 420 marks a marginal improvement in advancing our Second Amendment freedoms on the margins. As was the case with another law that we covered, Second Amendment supporters should read the text, think it over, and if they feel strongly about it, contact their Representative and Senators and politely urge them to act.

Below The Radar: Firearm Safety Act of 2019

H/T AmmoLand.

There is a link at the bottom of this article to contact your member of Congress to voice your opposition.

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United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- Firearms safety is something Second Amendment supporters have backed for a long time. In fact, the National Rifle Association has been at the forefront of providing firearms safety and education since its founding in 1871.

So it is very frustrating and aggravating to see anti-Second Amendment extremists try to make any claim that they stand for firearms safety. Especially when you hear the advice that Vice President Biden has given in the past – advice that any rational person would discard as likely to land you in hot water.

But our anger over the efforts by anti-Second Amendment extremists to hijack the terms “firearms safety” or “gun safety” shouldn’t cloud our minds to the fact that this can be a very effective move for them. In fact, at least one anti-Second Amendment extremist is trying to hijack the concept of firearms safety to set up very massive infringements on our rights – infringements that Second Amendment supporters would be almost powerless to stop.

HR 1115, the Firearm Safety Act of 2019, has been introduced by Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL). We’ve covered some past legislation she has introduced that attacked our Second Amendment rights, but this bill is not like the Urban Progress Act that is a massive omnibus. HR 1115 is all of two pages when you look at the official text.

But that two-page bill becomes a game-changer. In essence, it repeals the prohibition on the Consumer Product Safety Commission regulating firearms, ammunition, and other items. If you like the notion of “stroke of the pen, law of the land,” you’d love letting the unelected bureaucrats at the CPSC have a say over your rights.

This should come as no surprise, given Kelly’s history of introducing legislation that attacked our rights. Notably, though, Kelly is hoping to sell people on this being a matter of improving firearms safety, not setting things up for back-door gun bans. Some anti-Second Amendment extremists have promoted the idea of regulating guns like other consumer products, up to and including the ability to have unelected and unaccountable government bureaucrats order a recall or to prevent a gun from being released to the general public in the first place.

Given Representative Kelly’s anti-Second Amendment track record, Second Amendment supporters can reasonably assume that this is an outcome the Representative desires. As such, they need to contact their Senators and Representative and politely urge them to oppose HR 1115.

Below The Radar: The MICRO Act

H/T AmmoLand.

You can use the link at the bottom of the article to contact your House and Senate member and ask them to vote no on HR 719.

 

New York – -(AmmoLand.com)- Any Second Amendment supporter has probably been aware of the famous 1976 quote by Nelson “Pete” Shields. They have probably used it at some point when trying to convince fellow Americans to oppose the unjust restrictions that anti-Second Amendment extremists seek to impose.

In fact, Shields, with that quote, has probably done a great deal to help Second Amendment supporters make their case against his agenda, so much so that anti-Second Amendment extremists are forced to find new ways to solve what Shields called “the second problem.” That was, of course, getting all handguns registered.

These days, while some anti-Second Amendment extremists like Sheila Jackson Lee and Bobby Rush openly call for registration (usually in conjunction with licensing), many know that the only thing a push for registration will do is to ignite a groundswell of Second Amendment supporters who will do everything possible to vote them out of office. As a result, they have been trying to find new ways to get registration – and even bans – enacted through the back door.

One of those efforts is via “microstamping,” and HR 719, the MICRO Act, introduced by Representative Anthony Brown (D-MD), is intended to impose this back-door registration/gun ban scheme at the federal level. It’s a really crafty scheme, when you think about it, and it makes Brown a far more dangerous adversary than Jackson Lee or Rush.

Microstamping is intended to place some distinctive marks on the casings ejected from a semiautomatic pistol. According to the text of HR 719, the make, model, and serial number of the gun is to be recorded on the casing. It would also become a federal crime to alter the microstamping. Two years after the bill was passed, no newly built or imported semiautomatic pistol could be sold without this technology.

Even if manufacturers figure out the technological hurdles, for microstamping to work, law enforcement have to know who the owner of the gun that left the casing is. That comes down to some sort of registration system – even if they do not call it that. Which very nicely solves the problem for when they decide to pass a Swalwell-esque bill at some later date.

Also, the penalties for this are civil and administrative as well. This is intended to put a manufacturer or FFL out of business. Especially if the technology isn’t able to be implemented (which gives you a de facto ban on new semi-auto pistols). There is also no guarantee that this technology will even reduce crime. But it will greatly reduce options for those who wish to exercise their Second Amendment rights, especially for personal protection.

The MICRO Act is a scam on the American people. Second Amendment supporters should contact their Senators and Representative and politely urge them to oppose HR 719.

Below The Radar: HR 687 Handgun Licensing and Registration Act

H/T AmmoLand.

There is a link at the end of this article to contact the House and Senate.

 

United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- You may think this is legislation we’ve covered before. But you’d be wrong. There are a number of licensing schemes percolating in Congress, ranging from the Blair Holt Firearm Owner Licensing and Record of Sale Act to the Handgun Purchaser Licensing Act to the Sabika Sheikh Firearm Licensing and Registration Act.

HR 687, the Handgun Licensing and Registration Act, has been proposed by Representative Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), joins the collection of licensing schemes. This bill is not as intrusive as the Sabika Sheikh act, and unlike the Blair Holt act, it only targets handguns. Still, this bill is a very bad piece of news when it comes to our Second Amendment rights.

What this bill does is to impose a federal licensing scheme on any state that doesn’t already have one. Now, this licensing scheme treats anyone who wishes to exercise their Second Amendment rights like a common criminal, requiring a photograph and fingerprints. It’s an effort to stigmatize wanting to own a handgun, even though the Heller decision made it clear that owning a handgun is protected under the Second Amendment.

Coleman has not released any statement on this bill on her official website. That being said, Coleman’s track record has been that of a reliable vote against our rights. But what is particularly concerning about this bill it the lack of details.

Say what you will about the monstrosities proposed by Sheila Jackson Lee or Elizabeth Warren, but they at least told us what to expect. Coleman’s bill, though, is vague on exact details. The text puts in some qualifications but doesn’t discuss things like how much the fee would be. In addition, the federal scheme is only applicable in states that don’t pass their own licensing scheme. Of course, state licensing schemes can be even more stringent than the requirements in Coleman’s bill.

The fact of the matter is that this licensing scheme isn’t about safety. It’s about deterring Americans from exercising their Second Amendment rights. Representative Coleman could, if she wanted to address the misuse of firearms, be pushing something akin to Project Exile or she would sign on to the Prosecuting Gun Crimes Saves Lives Act.

The fact is, the Handgun Licensing and Registration Act needs to be defeated. Second Amendment supporters should contact their Senators and Representative and politely urge the defeat of HR 687.

Below The Radar: Freedom Financing Act

H/T AmmoLand.

You can use the links at the end of this article to voice support for HR 2079

 

United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- We have discussed the threat that corporate gun control poses to our Second Amendment rights multiple times. One of the threats is when companies like Salesforce have attempted to leverage their products to force companies to go along with infringements on our right to keep and bear arms. In many ways, the fight for our Second Amendment rights has now expanded to the boardroom and cubicle.

That said, the biggest threat is the financial blacklist. If banks, credit card companies, and credit unions refuse to do business with Second Amendment supporters or the firearms industry, any legal battle won at the Supreme Court can be rendered meaningless.

The good news is that there is legislation that can shut off the financial blacklist. Representative Roger Williams (R-TX) has introduced HR 2079, the Freedom Financing Act. This legislation pretty much tells major banks, credit unions, and credit card companies that they cannot discriminate on the basis of “reputational risks.”

This is an important phrase. The term “reputational risk” has invoked by Andrew Cuomo when he began abusing financial regulations to silence the National Rifle Association. With the passage of this legislation, Cuomo’s campaign would be rendered toothless. That alone would be an important win and could allow the NRA to sort out its internal issues without existential threat.

But this bill doesn’t stop with securing the NRA. The bill extends security to every pro-Second Amendment group, every firearms manufacturer, and even every federally licensed dealer. Because the same “reputational risk” nonsense could be aimed at, say, a company making modern multi-purpose semiautomatic firearms or a local gun store.

If enacted into law, HR 2079 ends the potential for “reputational risk” to be used against our Second Amendment rights. But this legislation also goes further, includes language that explicitly prohibits banks, credit unions, and credit card companies from discriminating against FFLs, be they manufacturers, importers, or dealers. The bill also backs it up with civil penalties of up to $10,000. But the real teeth in the bill is the prohibition of using the Automated Clearing House Network for banks that discriminate against FFLs.

To put it mildly, this is a bill that will make a huge difference in preventing the use of financial blacklisting to attack our rights. It goes without saying that Second Amendment supporters should contact their Representative and Senators and politely urge them to support HR 2079.

Below The Radar: The NICS Review Act

H/T AmmoLand.

Here is a link to the House and the Senate.

United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- The National Instant Check System has been a point of contention among Second Amendment supporters since the passage of the Brady Act in 1993. Some view it as an infringement and a “compromise.” Others viewed it as averting a far worse situation.

It goes without saying that at a bare minimum, the system clearly needs fixes, and the Firearm Due Process Protection Act is something that should be passed as soon as possible. But anti-Second Amendment extremists have hated the National Instant Check System, too. Why?

Because, despite claims they made at the time, it was never about background checks. At a minimum, many anti-Second Amendment extremists ultimately want a “needs-based” licensing scheme. In other words, you would need to prove to the government that you needed to own a certain gun. At which point, they would deign to grant you the license to own said firearm.

So, they have their own “fixes” in mind for NICS, and they are not along the lines Second Amendment supporters would like. One of those proposing a “NICS fix” that makes things worse is Representative Carolyn Maloney, who’s introduced HR 821, the NICS Review Act.

The NICS Review Act is intended to start the process of turning NICS into a registration system. Under current law, information on transactions that have not been denied is to be destroyed within 24 hours. The intent is to preserve the privacy of Americans who choose to exercise a constitutional right. Maloney has talked about privacy before and it has been a big deal for her on other issues.

But with the NICS Review Act, she wants the FBI to hold on to data about non-denied firearms transactions for at least 90 days. That is a huge change on two counts. One, the FBI can retain the records for much longer, almost three months. That’s bad enough for all sorts of mischief, and Maloney’s long anti-Second Amendment track record points to a desire to at least enable mischief targeting our rights.

But the real slick move on Maloney’s part is that she has now made the 90-day period a floor, instead of a limit. In short, the FBI could retain the records as long as they want. This makes her bill extremely dangerous, and it is an excellent tactical move on her part. She can paint this as a minor bill, and paint opposition to it as “those Second Amendment types being unreasonable.” But combine that change with “universal background checks” and a little bad faith, and all of a sudden, you now can create a national registry of firearms transactions with the stroke of an anti-Second Amendment president’s pen.

Second Amendment supporters need to contact their Representative and Senators to politely urge that they oppose this bill. They also need to take the time and use this bill to explain to their fellow Americans why anti-Second Amendment extremists aren’t really proposing “reasonable” solutions.