Obama Seeks to Link Gun Control to Government Benefits

By Dave Dolbee published on in News

President Obama is seeking to expand gun control through executive action and the back door. All it takes is a phone and a pen to potentially strip the Second Amendment from millions of citizens who have never committed a crime. In fact, the President is looking to equate anyone whose monthly Social Security disability payments is being handled by another (Alternate payee) in the same classification as drug addicts, felons or illegal immigrants. After all, who needs Constitutional protections when you can reinterpret the law through executive action and deny people their constitutional rights?

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The President is redefining the concept of gun control through expanded background checks by looking to existing federal law that restricts firearm ownership of citizens who are unable to manage their own affairs due to “marked subnormal intelligence, or mental illness, incompetency, condition, or disease.”

This is where it starts to get murky and dangerous for the Second Amendment. What does “marked subnormal intelligence” mean? Mental illness? Condition? Disease? The administration or any bureaucrat can tailor the definition of any of those terms to criteria that would strip millions of their 2A rights. And where would it stop? After applying the new criteria to those receiving benefits from Social Security who would be the next target?

Historical Perspective

The plan to expand background checks is not new, but was not expanded to Social Security for a reason. The 2007 Virginia Tech murders marked 32 deaths by a man who had already been declared by the courts to be mentally ill and ordered to undergo outpatient treatment. At the time, the court order was insufficient to warrant mandatory inclusion into the nation’s database. The database, NICS or National Instant Criminal Background Check System, is a system for determining whether prospective firearms buyers are eligible to legally own or possess a firearm. It was enacted in the early 1990s after being mandated by the Brady Handgun Violence Act.

After Virginia Tech, Congress expanded the reporting requirements, but the Social Security Administration determined it was not required to submit records, according to LaVenia LaVelle, an agency spokeswoman. Now the President wants to force the Social Security Administration to do just that via executive action and without the input or consent of Congress.

Reasonably, there are a few naysayers; political spinsters from the gun control ranks that would accuse us of being radicals and conspiracy theorists. However, we can look to the government for our answers—specifically the Department of Government Affairs. How does the Department of Government Affairs define disease, condition or incompetency? It is not cut and dry, but certainly those suffering from mild forms of PTSD, stress or other traumatic injuries would fit the new criteria.

Currently, there are approximately 4.2 million adults receiving benefits that are managed by a “representative payees.” Taking that to a personal level, my grandmother who is in her 90s could no longer legally posses an heirloom firearm that belonged to my grandfather before he passed a few decades ago. A friend with severe arthritis who has his daughter handle his finances would be barred from ownership. The gentleman has not shot in probably 20 years due to his condition, but he is a semi-retired lawyer (i.e. he is still mentally competent to practice law) and has one helluva gun collection that is still growing. How is he suddenly incapable or unsafe to own a firearm?

Seal_of_the_United_States_Department_of_Veterans_Affairs

Gun Control v. Gun Rights

The only people in favor of this plan have preconceived gun control agendas. Critics—not just gun rights activists—including mental health experts and advocates for the disabled have blasted the plan stating an expansion of the list of prohibited gun owners based on financial competence is wrongheaded and misinterprets the original meaning of the law. Difficulty balancing a checkbook should not be a reason to strip individuals of their Constitutional rights. Would we suspend their freedom of speech, protection from self-incrimination or force them quarter soldiers in their homes during peacetime under the same guise?

The law was designed to prohibit ownership from someone who has shown a strong tendency or suspicion of being violent, unsafe or dangerous. However, instead of increasing safety and security, the law would have the effect of pushing those seeking treatment or benefits into the shadows—or worse, away from treatment altogether. I have had the pleasure of hunting with dozens of disabled or recovering veterans on industry-sponsored trips over the years. Some had severe disabilities from combat—mental or physical—but all had a strong desire to overcome and regain a sense of normalcy. If President Obama’s plan comes to fruition, memories such as these would be a thing of the past.

 

Eric Hollen, a U.S. Army veteran and Paralympic athlete, competes in a 50-meter pistol competition.

Since when does a blanket decision regarding a disability bar an individual from gun ownership without due process?

A Ray of Hope?

Republicans have introduced legislation to change the policy. The Veterans Second Amendment Protection Act, now under consideration in the House, would require a court to determine that somebody poses a danger before being reported to the background check system. It is time to crank up the machine and remind your congressional representatives that you support the Second Amendment and our veterans.

Where do you come down on the President’s attempt to expand background checks? Share your thoughts and opinions in the comment section.

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Comments (201)

  • Jim

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    I assume that you know that the VA already reports Vet’s who do not control their monetary benefits to the FBI to be included in the data base of criminals etc.

    Reply

  • 50calAl

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    Just a friendly reminder that the Second Amendment can’t be “taken away.” In order to lose it, you need to surrender your weapons. Sure, you might be killed if you resist confiscation. But you’re going to die someday regardless, so if it comes down to it, you might as well die on your feet with your boots on. If that happens, make it count and take some with you!

    Another friendly reminder: It isn’t Iran, the Taliban, Al Qaeda, ISIS, or any other Designated Boogeyman of the Year that’s robbing us of our constitutional rights. They’re not the ones imposing gun control, spying on us without warrants, or confiscating property without trial. Furthermore, no foreign power has the capacity to invade and occupy the US. Non-state groups like the Taliban and ISIS are far too tiny, and foreign countries with large armies (like North Korea) couldn’t get their troops to our shores without getting nuked.

    Therefore, it’s obvious that the ONLY threat to our freedom comes from the US political class and its police and military enforcers. Unnecessary laws and the mercenaries who enforce them are what limit freedom. Think about that the next time you thank “our” troops for signing up to invade foreign lands in service to the politicians who hate our freedoms.

    Blasphemy? Heresy? Maybe. But it’s also the absolute truth.

    Reply

    • Laurie

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      You hit the hammer on the nail. People of America … Wake Up!!

      Reply

    • RetiredCW4

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      You do realize that many current and former military are gun owners correct? Also you probably need to read Article 1, Section 8 (Powers of Congress), of the Constitution.

      Reply

  • Sam Vonn

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    The devil is in the details. Details are something that progressives add AFTER a law is mandated. As many know already that is the philosophy of a good progressive. Now that this president is mandating by presidential decree and while congress is trying to come up with an alternative, a lot of guns can be grabbed that shouldn’t be. Except of course the gang bangers guns. Too dangerous and politically incorrect. Rinse and repeat.

    Reply

  • JTH

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    The second amendment was put in place so that citizens can protect themselves from an oppressive government. We now have that government . It is the governments decision if they want to push its citizens to the point of revolution.

    Reply

    • Mchael

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      @ JTH.

      You are aware that the “Dick Act” (Militia Act) of 1903 and Amended in 1908, supersedes the Militia Act of 1792. Article 1, clause 16…

      Reply

  • Sheldon

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    Our president won his position by legal means. He will be replaced by someone who shares one major common driving philosophy: “F*ck the constitution and the will of the people – I am King” depending – of course – on what (in addition to their a**holes) can be found in their crotch.

    Reply

  • Rich

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    Is this possible??????
    1. Well funded covert Cabal producing and unleashing a unique type of home-spun terrorist, with full knowledge and support of “some” individuals within the Administration.
    2. Purpose to gain further support for gun control.
    3. Reasoning…too much coincidence behind all the recent mass killings and Administrations finger pointing at Gun Control as the first solution.
    4. Leads to 2016 Presidential Martial Law Declaration, all prior to election.
    5. Results in Obama’s self declaration as something more Perminant as Presidant or some other title he comes up with. Orders all citizens to turn in your weapons under the guise of Martial Law. Enforces this Declaration using our Military against us. Not only to maintain “order” but to insure ther collection of all arms.

    If you are honest with yourself, none of this is beyond the scope of possible with this current Administration. Never before in our history would anyone thought this would be possible in this country. I do not trust anyone in Washington and I am not a paranoid person. Too many officials at all levels of govt. are out for themselves. Not everyone, but enough to poison the water.

    Keep an open mind to this train of thought. I pray I am overly concerned, but am cautiously watching all that unfolds. You should be doing the same.

    Reply

  • Bob

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    Sadly the “DUMB MAJORITY” is running the “US of A” into a deep hole of worthlessness.This once great nation is no longer the country the world respects and trusts.

    “We The People” are no longer served by the people we voted for and trusted to run this country the right way.

    “We The People” are now serving our elected “Masters in Washington”. Who only serve themselves.Too many of the “DUMB MAJORITY”, are too busy with their own life problems to concern themselves with the running of this nation and it’s problems.Thus the continued lowering of the American standard of living. The “bar of life” that was once set high in America, is now so low, you need to crawl on your belly to get under it.

    There are too few of us “SMART MINORITY” to make the changes this country needs to put America back on top. Our numbers are too few to make the difference with a vote.The only way for the “SMART MINORITY” to help right the continuing wrongs of this country.Is by a BLOODY REVOLT. YES, BLOOD must be spilled to thin down the numbers of the “DUMB MAJORITY”. So the “DUMB MAJORITY” will become the “DUMB FEW”.That is the only way I see this once great country, becoming a great nation again.

    Tyranny has many faces, right now the “DUMB MAJORITY” is one of them.

    Reply

  • john winder

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    being diabetic and having mental capacity diminished due to low blood sugar, where does that leave me.?

    Reply

    • Secundius

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      @ john winder.

      Probably the same place it leaves me? Fighting “Back-to-Back” in a CVS Pharmacy protecting our “Med’s”…

      Reply

  • John

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    If they try to take our guns more than those that are disabled will fight against the law.

    Reply

  • Tom

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    At least this article managed to have the facts mostly straight – even though the tone was nearly as bad as the ridiculous nonsense from the NRA that started the panic (of course, starting a panic is a routine part of the NRA’s fund raising program, exactly the same as the the anti-gun crowd uses slanted headlines to create a panic to push support for their side). First fact: “Obama” had absolutely nothing to do with this – the whole thing was at low to mid level in DoJ. Second Fact: It really has nothing to do with either Social Security benefits or disability benefits, other than that the Social Security Administration it the agency that has the records. Third fact: This is only about people who HAVE been declared incompetent to manage their own affairs. Fourth Fact: (Finally one to get a little upset about) yes, the standard for being incompetent to manage your own affairs is not quite as stringent as for being mentally incompetent or being ‘a danger to one self or others.’ In many cases the individual being declared incompetent to manage their own affairs simply goes into court and agrees to let a close relative handle their money for them, often with no opposition. Fifth Fact: There is no “Gun Grab” planned (despite the dire warning in the NRA fund raising pitch) – all that would happen under the planned program would be that people who have been declared incompetent to manage their own finances would be unable to buy a gun. Yes, it is POSSIBLE that in some rabidly anti-gun location, some local officials might demand that the ‘incompetent’ individual transfer their guns to someone qualified (which would normally be the same person who had been appointed to manage their finances, almost always a close relative, usually a spouse or adult offspring). NOTHING in this would allow the government (federal, state, or local) to take the guns – at worst they might make the individual transfer guns to someone else.

    Does this program go too far? Probably. Is this really anything new? Not really – the law has not changed, the only issue is what constitutes being mentally incompetent to possess a gun.

    Reply

    • RetiredCW4

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      The NRA thrives on half truths to promote fear and gun sales (BTW they represent the gun manufactures and not the gun owners). People need to do some basic research because just becasue it was on the internet or some pundit mouthed it does not make it true.

      Reply

    • Ron

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      Thank you Tom for your intelligent presentation of facts. Its amazing how certain agencies distribute disinformation, and some people are receptive to this without doing their own research. I was amazed when the talk of President Obama taking people ‘s guns away, and people in droves headed to the gun shows across the country to make those people selling guns very profitable. Whats really funny is we still have our guns. So much for fear mongering.

      Reply

    • Mikial

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      @ Tom, this comment and those of Ron and RetiredCW4 are not serious . . . right? This is satire like the kind published in The Onion.

      And if you are indeed serious about the tripe you are spouting, then you are either seriously misinformed or you are living in what Rommel called “Cloud cuckoo land.” If it wasn’t for the NRA and other organizations and grassroots movements, we would all be registering our BB guns, because that’s we would have left.

      And for that matter, groups like the GOA and NAGR say the NRA is too liberal and soft. If these organizations are so unnecessary and ineffective, then why so people like Pelosi and Feinstien hate them so much?

      And Ron, if you think no one has lost their guns, then I guess you don’t live in New York or Connecticut where the new gun laws have resulted in the police showing up to confiscate weapons. And I guess you’re not a vet who is now under the microscope to see if his/her guns should be taken away.

      If we don’t stand together, we are screwed. Period. And sorry if I am coming across a little too forcefully here, but it’s people like you that open the cracks that the libs use to drive a wedge between our ranks and weaken us in support of the Constitution.

      I’m sure I’m going to get flamed by you, and probably some others because of these comments, but then, I have never worried much about being popular, only about being free and standing up for the rights of all American.

      Reply

    • ReiredCW4

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      I swore an oath to defend the Constitution for over 20 years of active duty (to include combat) and swear the same oath now. I do have an idea what the Constitution states and have “put my skin” in the game to defend it. The NRA represents gun manufacturers (the are a large part gun lobby). Their primary mission is to support legislation that benefits gun makers and not you.

      Reply

    • Tom

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      @Mikial Apparently your tinfoil hat is too tight and cutting off blood flow to your head (not to your brain, which is located elsewhere).

      You do realize that EVERY anti-gun federal law that has been passed by the US Congress in the past fifty years passed with the endorsement of the NRA – no, don’t pretend you are shocked, look it up. All the anti-gun crowd needs to do is get some nitwit in Congress to propose some really stupid law that can’t possibly pass and the NRA will roll over to “compromise”. Nancy et al, don’t hate the NRA – they count on the NRA – oh sure, they TALK about the NRA, mostly because it is the ONLY pro-gun organization that 90% of their audience has ever heard of. And, as long as they can make out that the NRA is the devil, that keeps the opposition impotent.
      Stupid STATE laws in NY, CT, and CO have absolutely nothing to do with anything discussed in the article. Those are just a strawman that you are using because you cannot argue the facts (mostly because you can’t be bothered finding out what the facts are).

      Reply

    • Mikial

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      @Tom

      I’m sure you have some citations to support your assertion that “EVERY anti-gun federal law that has been passed by the US Congress in the past fifty years passed with the endorsement of the NRA.” Please provide them so I can “look it up.”

      Reply

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