In April 2013, Maryland passed the Firearm Safety Act (FSA). Among other things, the FSA bans law-abiding citizens, with the exception of retired law enforcement officers, from possessing the vast majority of semi-automatic rifles commonly kept by several million American citizens for defending their families and homes and other lawful purposes. In truth, the law went so far as to ban 45 types of so-called assault weapons and limit magazine capacity to 10 rounds.
Posts Tagged ‘NRA’
In March, we reported on the details of NRA-backed concealed carry reciprocity legislation pending in Congress. The momentum behind those bills continues to build, with each attracting dozens of co-sponsors. Sen. John Cornyn’s Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act now boasts 37 co-sponsors. And 194 of his House colleagues have signed onto Rep. Richard Hudson’s Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017.
They say that money makes the world go round. While that may be hard to prove, the fact of simply having a mass fortune and a political agenda can yield results or be a political threat. The politics of where you stand on the issue determines which side of the fence you’ll sit. For supporters of the Second Amendment, it is guaranteed that we will be on the opposite side of the fence as Michael Bloomberg.
However, there are lessons to be learned by Bloomberg’s words. In this article, Frank Minter, writing for the NRA, shows how Bloomberg admits to using deception to attain his political objectives. Points such as these are lessons we can all use When debating and educating others about our Second Amendment rights. Read the full analysis.
Michael Bloomberg, former mayor of New York City, the eighth-richest person in the United States, and the billionaire behind the rabidly anti-gun group Everytown for Gun Safety, was asked on CBS’ “60 Minutes” why he didn’t run for president of the United States. His answer was revealing.
By Frank Miniter
“If I thought we could win, or had a reasonable chance, I would have [run for president],” he said. “It would be totally unlikely, very unlikely that an independent could win. And in my case, I was mayor for a long time. People know where I stand. I couldn’t pretend to be something I’m not.”
So Bloomberg realized that his efforts to ban things like “Big Gulp” sodas, coal mining and, effectively, the Second Amendment of the U.S. Bill of Rights made it impossible for him to fool a majority of Americans into voting for him. He “couldn’t pretend to be something” else than what he is, so he opted not to run.
That’s honest—at least to himself. Everytown consistently uses “gun death” statistics that include suicides to make it seem as if there are many more homicides than there are.
Officially, Everytown is a private group that doesn’t disclose its donors. Bloomberg is, of course, the founder of Everytown. He funds the anti-gun group and, we must presume, the group does what he desires. So it is interesting that he realizes his anti-freedom, paternalistic views are too well known to the American people for him to win the presidency, but that he nevertheless thinks his group Everytown for Gun Safety is far enough removed from his views to be taken as nothing but a “gun safety” group by Americans.
After all, even if journalists, given their own political leanings, are unwilling to use the old journalist’s mantra “following the money” to report Everytown’s real mission, Everytown has itself lied so much and so blatantly that it also can no longer hide its real agenda. (Tellingly, this is likely the reason Bloomberg morphed “Mayors Against Illegal Guns” [MAIG] into Everytown, as MAIG had so dirtied its name it needed a new one.)
Everytown consistently uses “gun death” statistics that include suicides to make it seem as if there are many more homicides than there are. They have included terrorist acts in their mass shooting statistics and inflated the numbers of mass shootings. There are too many lies and deceptions to report in one article, but here is a quick analysis of their two biggest campaigns at present—both riddled with lies.
Universal Background Checks
The misinformation and outright deceit from Everytown on so-called “universal” background check laws (universal is in quotes because criminals by definition won’t abide by such laws, so such a law can’t be truly universal) is hard to sum up—there is just too much of it. Here are a few highlights.
Everytown says on its website that “under current federal law, background checks are only required on gun sales at licensed dealers. This loophole in the system make [sic] it easy for millions of guns to change hands each year with no background check, and no questions asked.” But the study Everytown sources for this claim is a small survey of gun owners that has to do with stolen guns. This study estimated that “about 380,000 guns [are] stolen” each year, not millions. Everytown doesn’t explain how “universal” background check laws would stop criminals who steal guns from selling the stolen goods to other criminals. The organization also don’t explain how such laws would stop criminals from illegally selling guns to prohibited persons.
The NRA wants real solutions to these problems, such as prosecuting those who sell guns to criminals and encouraging gun owners to safely store firearms they are not currently using. But Everytown isn’t interested in practical solutions that respect American freedom. They want bans, harsh controls and to criminalize as many gun owners as they can.
As a caveat, Everytown claims that “[s]ince enacted [background checks at gun dealers] have blocked nearly 3 million sales to felons, domestic abusers, fugitives, and other people prohibited by law from having guns.” There have been nearly 3 million initial denials since the FBI began the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) in 1998, but many of these happen because someone has a similar name to someone who is prohibited or for another reason having nothing to do with felons, domestic abusers, fugitives and other criminal activity.
They want bans, harsh controls and to criminalize as many gun owners as they can.
Everytown says law enforcement “overwhelmingly opposes” the “Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017,” but they don’t source any data for this “overwhelming” claim. They do site a 2013 press release from the National Law Enforcement Partnership to Prevent Gun Violence, a group that consistently opposes pro-gun legislation, including the “Hearing Protection Act of 2017,” for this claim, but that hardly constitutes an “overwhelming” majority.
Everytown also says, “Reciprocity would force states to let violent offenders and people with no firearm safety training carry hidden, loaded handguns—even if those people could not otherwise legally purchase a gun in the state.”
This is fear-mongering nonsense. Anyone who reads the “Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017” can clearly see that the bill recognizes the diversity of state concealed-carry laws by making each person subject to the concealed-carry laws of the state where they are present. This includes respecting the local laws that prohibit firearms.
Everytown also says that “a person denied a permit in his home state—e.g. after a criminal conviction—could simply get an out-of-state permit, and carry back at home.”
Actually, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act allows a person to carry concealed only if they are not federally prohibited from possessing or receiving a firearm, are carrying a valid government-issued photo ID and are lawfully licensed or otherwise entitled to carry a concealed handgun. It is already illegal under federal law (18 U.S.C. 922(g)) for prohibited persons to possess a firearm.The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act would simply protect the freedom of law-abiding gun owners who live in the other 28 states.
Reciprocity is already a reality in the 22 states that recognize all other concealed-carry licenses or allow law-abiding nonresidents to carry a firearm without a license. The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act would simply protect the freedom of law-abiding gun owners who live in the other 28 states.
All that said, just imagine if Bloomberg were an honest person. He could honestly splash around his $47 billion in ways that might really help. He could look at American freedom for what it is, instead of seeing it as the problem he pretends it is. He could then bolster our freedom while funding new approaches to bust criminals. It would be so much easier this way—working with Americans 100 million-plus gun owners instead of against them.
As Mark Twain said, “If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.”
What lessons or points did you take from Miniter’s analysis? How can others use these points or others you know of, in future discussions/debates? Share your answers in the comment section.
Frank Miniter is the author of The New York Times bestseller The Ultimate Man’s Survival Guide—Recovering the Lost Art of Manhood. He is also the author of This Will Make a Man of You and The Future of the Gun. He is a contributor to Forbes and writes for many publications. His website is FrankMiniter.com.
It is encouraging to see so many Americans obtaining their concealed weapon permit. These new shooters are supporters of the Second Amendment and have taken steps to be responsible for their own safety and security. Yet, in many cases, there are people among them that are armed with a deadly weapon but unable to defend themselves well.
National reciprocity is a priority for most of America’s legal gun toting community, so what’s the hold up? We have been promised this would be a priority under President Trump, and legislation was introduced in Congress in the first few days of January. Now all we need is the action to make it happen. Until then, here are a few good argument from the NRA on why we need this legislation.
In 1776, America’s Founders came together in Philadelphia to draw up a “Declaration of Independence,” ending political ties to Great Britain. Written by Thomas Jefferson, the Declaration explains people’s rights and how people create governments:
WE hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness-That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed.
By Robert Pew
In modern English: We don’t get our rights from the government; we’re born with those rights, and the government should protect them.
Eleven years later, after independence had been won, our Founders assembled once again to draw up a plan for governing the new nation. That plan became the Constitution of the United States of America.
During the debate over the Constitution, many Americans were worried that a strong federal government would trample on the individual rights of citizens, as the British had done. To protect the basic rights of Americans, the Founders added the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. Those amendments are known as the Bill of Rights. They represent the fundamental freedoms that are at the heart of our society, including the First Amendment freedoms of speech and religion, and the Second Amendment right of the people to keep and bear arms.
The meaning of the Second Amendment has been debated for decades. Does the Second Amendment protect an individual right for all Americans? Or does it only protect the right to keep and bear arms while participating in an organized force, such as the National Guard? Or does it only protect the “right” of the states to have a National Guard in the first place?
Some people have claimed there was no individual right to keep and bear arms. However, anyone who understands the Declaration of Independence knows that rights-by definition-belong to individuals. And in the Bill of Rights, the freedoms of religion, freedom of speech and the rest all refer to individual liberties.
The Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms is no different. The first Congress had no doubt about its meaning. Most of the Founders were gun owners and hunters. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson exchanged letters about their gun collections. The Founders had just finished winning their freedoms with guns in their hands, and soon passed a law requiring most male citizens to own at least one gun and 30 rounds of ammunition. They believed citizens should be able to protect themselves and their country against attacks on life and liberty.
So, where did anyone get the idea that the Second Amendment doesn’t protect an individual right? That theory was invented in the 20th century, by people who rejected what seemed like common sense to our Founding Fathers. Instead, they claimed that the Second Amendment only protects the government.
Now, the Supreme Court has thrown out that idea.
In 1975, Washington, D.C. passed some of the most extreme gun laws in the nation. Handguns were banned. All guns had to be stored disassembled and locked, making them useless for self-defense. City leaders claimed it would make the city safer. But Washington’s murder rate soared, and our nation’s capital soon became known as America’s murder capital.
In 2003, a group of Washington residents filed a lawsuit challenging these harsh gun laws. They said that Washington’s gun laws violated the Second Amendment because the laws took away the right to use firearms for self-defense, even in their own homes.
The first court that heard the case said that D.C.’s laws were constitutional. The residents appealed, and the appeals court agreed that the laws violated the right to keep and bear arms, after all.
Now, the city appealed. By 2008, the case, which by then was known as D.C. vs. Heller, had gone to the Supreme Court. To make their decision, the Supreme Court justices studied the words and history of the Second Amendment. In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court agreed with the citizens: The Second Amendment protects an individual right, not a “state’s right.” The decision struck down the District’s laws that banned handguns and that kept people from using guns for self-defense in their homes.
No Supreme Court decision ever ends a political debate, though. Now, the NRA and citizens around the country are going to court to challenge states and cities with restrictive gun laws. But the landmark Heller decision provided a key answer to the most important part of the debate: The Second Amendment protects an individual right to keep and bear arms.
Whenever a politician or anti gunner proposes legislation and explains it as common sense, there is one thing you can be sure of, it is anything but common sense to gun owners or those who believe in the Second Amendment. Such is the case of the call from Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe for the enactment of a new one-handgun-a-month law to mimic a handgun rationing law that was repealed in 2012.
It has been seven long years since the Supreme Court last heard a case dealing with the Second Amendment. However, with confirmation hearings for Judge Neil Gorsuch, there’s renewed hope that the nation’s high court will once again weigh in on one or more of the many cases having to do with our right to keep and bear arms.
Far from the conception of some, the gun control fight is not over. While certain threats have been diminished with the defeat of Hillary Clinton, others are just as real. Fights are taking place within local and state legislatures. Other efforts are not against new threats, but against actions taken by previous administrations. The Shooter’s Log reported on the threat to the Second Amendment rights of individuals applying for, or receiving, Social Security benefits.
- Obama Seeks to Link Gun Control to Government Benefits
- Congress Weighs in on Linking Benefits to Gun Control—Act Now!
- Social Security Administration Strikes at Second Amendment
- Senate Vote to Repeal Obama’s Social Security Administration Gun Grab!
While we were unsuccessful in blocking the initial implementation at the end of President Obama’s term, President Trump is doing the right thing. Read the full release from the National Rifle Association (NRA).
On Tuesday, President Donald J. Trump signed the repeal of an Obama-era Social Security Administration (SSA) rule that would have resulted in some 75,000 law-abiding beneficiaries losing their Second Amendment rights each year.
The SSA rulemaking was issued in the waning weeks of Obama’s presidency and targeted those receiving disability insurance or Supplementary Security Income based on SSA’s listed mental disorders and who were appointed a “representative payee” to help them manage their benefits. The agency –for the first time in its history– sought to portray these individuals as “mental defectives” who were prohibited from acquiring or possessing firearms under federal law. It had planned to notify them of their prohibited status and to report them to NICS.
Making matters worse, the beneficiaries would have had no ability to argue about their suitability to possess firearms before their rights were lost. Instead, they would have been reduced to filing a petition for “restoration” of their rights—an expensive and bureaucratic process that would have required them to pay for a mental health evaluation and to prove they were not dangerous. A premise the government never established in the first place.
The plan drew fire not just from the NRA, but also from the ACLU and a wide range of mental health advocacy and treatment groups from across the political spectrum. Also opposing the plan was the National Council on Disability (NCD), an independent federal agency charged with advising the President, Congress, and other federal agencies regarding policies, programs, practices, and procedures that affect people with disabilities. The NCD issued a statement explaining:
Since the action was first proposed in 2013, NCD has consistently taken the position that equating the need for assistance in managing one’s finances with a false presumption of incapacity in other areas of life, including possession of a firearm, unnecessarily and unreasonably deprives individuals with disabilities of a constitutional right and increases the stigma that [affects] those who may need a representative payee. The overly broad classification of “mental disorder,” includes a wide range of limitations and a shifting set of criteria relevant to whether or not one can engage in substantial gainful activity. NCD remains steadfast in our position that this classification remains irrelevant to the question of whether one can be a responsible gun owner.
The SSA received tens of thousands of comments in opposition to the rule. The NRA-ILA’s submission explained in detail how the rule was contrary to the underlying statute, to the U.S. Constitution and would function mainly to stigmatize the SSA beneficiaries and discourage others from seeking treatment and benefits to which they were entitled. It also argued that there was no empirical support for the notion that the rule would promote public safety.
The SSA, however, ignored the comments and issued the rule essentially as proposed.
It also brazenly brushed aside proffered evidence that the targeted beneficiaries were not at any increased risk for committing violence with firearms. “We are not attempting to imply a connection between mental illness and a propensity for violence, particularly gun violence,” the SSA wrote. “Rather, we are complying with our obligations under the NIAA, which require us to provide information from our records when an individual falls within one of the categories identified in 18 U.S.C. 922(g).”
Fortunately, pro-gun majorities in the U.S. House and U.S. Senate acted quickly to disapprove the rule under the Congressional Review Act, a federal statute that allows Congress to use an expedited legislative process to overrule administrative actions passed in the waning days of an outgoing administration.
The efforts to roll back this unjustified and legally unauthorized rule were predictably met with a withering barrage of negative and fake reporting from the anti-gun media, with supposed “news” outlets issuing such ludicrous headlines as “Senate, House hand guns to seriously mentally ill.” All these reports completely ignored the fact that existing restrictions on persons who had been involuntarily committed or adjudicated mentally incompetent remained fully intact. By acting to block the rule, Congress simply disapproved the Obama administration’s attempt to create a new class of prohibited persons by “reinterpreting” a federal gun control statute passed in 1968.
President Trump’s signing of the measure not only served to help repair the damage to the Second Amendment wrought by the Obama administration, it ushered in what many hope will be a new era of respect for the right to keep and bear arms. Just over a month into his presidency, Trump signed a freestanding pro-gun bill into law.
The NRA, of course, was among the earliest and staunchest supporters of Trump’s presidential bid. We thank him for his quick action on this measure and look forward to working with him and the pro-gun majorities in Congress to protect Americans’ Second Amendment rights.
What issue should the NRA-ILA focus on next? Which law would you most like to see President Trump repeal next? Share your answers in the comment section.
Sharing the importance of gun safety with children is one of the most important things we can do as adults. Whether you own a firearm or not, it is imperative for children to know what to do if they find a gun—stop, don’t touch, run away, and tell a grown-up!
The Shooter’s Log has covered (NRA: Social Security Administration Strikes at Second Amendment; Obama Seeks to Link Gun Control to Government Benefits) the recent actions of the Social Security Administration (SSA) that many believe would threaten, if not completely strip, recipients of their Second Amendment Rights in exchange for benefits.
Lawful Gun Carriers Must Forfeit Other Rights
If you thought your Second Amendment rights were safe with the election of a new President, you may have to rethink your position. Rulings such as this, especially given the first decision and the Justice Department’s sending the case back to be reconsidered which resulted in the weapon being blamed in the second decision… should give each of us pause to ask ourselves, “How safe is the Second Amendment in the eyes of the courts and how important will the fight be for the next Supreme Court Justice?”
Walking through the manufacturer and exhibitor booths at the 2017 Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor, Trade (SHOT) Show’s Industry Day at the Range, I had a chance to speak with several suppressor manufacturers as well as several dealers. The news was mixed but consistent.
The election of November 8, 2016, caused in elation to many and sorrow to others. Regardless whom you voted for in the Presidential election, we should all be feeling more than a little sorrow for the residents of California. In fact, we should be downright outraged. While California has never been known as being overly friendly to gun owners or manufacturers, new laws have truly changed the game and made it easier than ever for residents or travelers to run afoul of the law.
Election day jammed California citizens into an untenable position: Proposition 57 releases violent criminals for budgetary reasons, while Proposition 63 drastically restricts residents’ ability to defend themselves.
Whether or not you supported him as a candidate, we would all like to think the next President will defend our rights under the Second Amendment. Early indicators are positive, but that does not mean the threat is diminished. It simply means we have one less entity against us. The threat from the antis is alive and they are up to their old tricks. In an attempt to counter the efforts of the NRA-ILA, and groups such as the Second Amendment Foundation, the anti gunners have formed anti-Firearms Accountability Counsel Task Force.
Donald Trump won the election, which has allowed many to conclude that the Second Amendment dodged an anti-gun bullet. You may agree or disagree, but one thing is for sure, the anti gunners have not given up their agenda—in the United States and across the pond. In a recent article published by the NRA, the Journal of the American Medical Association’s (JAMA) takes aim at Florida’s Stand Your Ground law.