“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” – The Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United Sates of America (Click here to read the Constitution in its entirety!)
There has been no other right acknowledged within the Bill of Rights that has been so regulated and so trampled upon as our right to bear arms. In fact, the population of the United States of America embraced massive anti-gun legislation at least once every generation throughout the twentieth century. Dismantling inalienable rights has been proven to be the default knee-jerk reaction of the populace to any sort of tragedy.
Gun Control in America
National Firearms Act – 1934
First, the notorious National Firearms Act was enacted by Congress in 1934 out of fear of ongoing gang violence surrounding the Prohibition Era. This piece of legislation required several types of firearms to be registered within a federal registry. It also imposed a $200 tax on the sale of those firearms. This tax was also imposed on the importation, manufacturing, and dealing of those firearms. The tax was used as an excuse to justify the NFA due to the legislature’s authority to tax and to regulate interstate commerce. (Click HERE to read more about the NFA)
United States v. Miller – 1939
After that, the Supreme Court case Unites States v. Miller found that short-barreled shotguns were not protected under the Second Amendment. The court deemed shotguns with barrels less than 18 inches in length unnecessary for a well regulated militia. As such, the NFA was officially upheld and this part was considered constitutional. Again, the authority of Congress to regulate interstate commerce was cited. (Click HERE to learn more)
Gun Control Act of 1968 – 1968
Once again, tragedy and fear were used to pass the Gun Control Act of 1968. This legislation was passed after the assassinations of President John Kennedy, Attorney General Robert Kennedy, and Dr. Martin Luther King , Jr. The mail order purchase of a firearm by Lee Harvey Oswald was used as a talking point as justification. Keeping in line with the trend, the authority of Congress to regulate interstate commerce was cited to legitimize this bill. The statute effectively banned interstate firearm transfers by citizens and also regulated importation and licensing.
This statute also began the prohibition of firearm sales to large numbers of people. (Learn more about the Gun Control Act of 1968 HERE)
Brady Handgun Violence Protection Act – 1993
The Brady Handgun Violence Protection Act was passed in 1993 and took effect in 1994. The Brady bill established the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). This legislation was named after James Brady, the man that was wounded in the attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan in 1981. Again, tragedy was taken advantage of in order to pass anti-gun legislation. (Click HERE to read more about the Brady Handgun Violence Protection Act)
The Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act – 1994
The Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act was also known as the Federal Assault Weapons Ban and the Clinton Gun Ban. This bill banned the manufacture, use, possession, and import of many different weapons. Many weapons already manufactured and owned were “grandfathered” and deemed acceptable under the Clinton Gun Ban. However, it should be stated that any similar bills presented in the future will likely not include a “grandfather” clause. This ban expired on September 13, 2004.
The ineffectiveness of firearm restrictions in reducing crime is a well-established fact. As such, it is worth stating that the Columbine High School shooting happened in 1999 and the 9/11 attacks happened in 2001. Both of these tragedies happened in the middle of the Federal Assault Weapons Ban. (Learn more about The Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act HERE)
New Encroachments on the Second Amendment
As stated above, the population of the United States embraced the anti-gun mindset at least once every generation. That being said, we are about due for another vastly restrictive piece of overreaching anti-gun legislation.
Red Flag Laws
Americans have heard a lot about “red flag laws” in the media lately and it seems that these anti-gun laws are becoming an increasingly dangerous trend. In 1999, Connecticut was the first state in the nation to adopt this type of legislation. This trend was slow to catch on as no other states adopted such laws until Indiana did so in 2005. Again, it took some time for another state to follow suit, but California did so in 2014.
However, it was at this point that the trend began to gain momentum. Washington adopted red flag laws in 2016 and Oregon adopted similar legislation in 2017. In the aftermath of the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, FL, several states adopted red flag laws within the same year. So, in keeping with the tradition of surrendering the rights of American citizens in the aftermath of tragedy, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Vermont enacted their own version of this anti-gun legislation in 2018.
These laws allow police or family members to petition a state court for the forfeiture of an individual’s Second Amendment inalienable rights and the seizure of that individual’s firearms indefinitely until the State deems it acceptable for them to be returned, if ever. It should be noted that this is all carried out without the due process that is guaranteed to all American citizens. Yes, under red flag laws, your right to bear arms can be forfeited. Additionally, that action can be taken without due process and without the right to face your accuser.
A Red Flag Law Victim
Red flag laws claimed their first casualty in Ferndale, Maryland, on November 5, 2018. Police arrived to seize the firearms of 61-year-old Gary Willis at 5:17am and Mr. Willis answered the door with a firearm. How many of us have answered the door with a firearm in the evening or in the early morning? Once officers stated that they were there to confiscate this man’s firearms, he began to argue with police. Mr. Willis was shot and killed after refusing to relinquish his right to bear arms.
This would be a good time to point out the old adage, “after registration comes confiscation”.
This is NOT “Minority Report”. Therefore, individuals cannot punished for “pre-crime”. These laws should be shredded as unconstitutional. After that, the representatives that voted for them should be impeached and every judge that approved forfeiture of an individual’s right to bear arms should be fired and disbarred. Finally, the police that have chosen to enforce such laws should be fired and shouldld lose benefits. Instead, more states are considering these laws while this article is written. As such, the duty is upon each of us to contact our representatives and to challenge any form of anti-gun legislation. Inform your friends and family about the dangers of red flag laws and all other anti-gun legislation.
Washington State’s SB 5050 – 2017-18 and HB 1134
Yet again, Washington State is in the process of passing more anti-gun legislation. This legislation is noteworthy because it classifies essentially every semiautomatic handgun, rifle, and shotgun as an “assault weapon”. Yes, even your Ruger 10/22. This sets a very dangerous precedent that many believe will be adopted by other states as are the red flag laws. Both bills are worth reading. (Read the full text of SB 5050 – 2017-18 HERE and HB 1134 HERE)
The infamous HR 7115. Playfully named The 3D Firearms Prohibitions Act, this monstrosity is an all-encompassing encroachment on our right to bear arms. Banning FIRST and SECOND amendment rights, this bill needs opposed by all of us.
SEC. 2. DO-IT-YOURSELF ASSAULT WEAPON BAN
This section bans 80% lowers that people have been using to legally build rifles, shotguns, and handguns.
SEC. 3. PROHIBITION OF ADVERTISING DO-IT-YOURSELF ASSAULT WEAPONS
Section 3 of this bill prohibits the advertisement of 80% lowers, as well as “assault weapon” parts kits and “machinegun” parts kits. This bill is clearly not focused on 80% lowers. Rather, it uses the guise of banning these lowers to ban firearm parts and the First Amendment.
SEC. 4. REQUIREMENT THAT HOMEMADE FIREARMS HAVE SERIAL NUMBERS
Most people that purchase 80% lowers add their own serial number on the lowers prior to building the firearm in accordance with any state and federal laws. However, this section requires you to take your unfinished lower to a dealer to be serialized. This transaction is treated as a “transfer” and will include a fee by the dealer.
(Read the full bill HERE)
Shadow Banning and Purging
It is no secret that conservatives have been and are being shadow banned and purged from Social Media. For instance, many of us have at least one person that we know that seems to be constantly in “Facebook Jail”. Additionally, we have all heard about the purge of high-profile conservative voices that Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube have conducted. Some of us have even experienced this firsthand.
Acting Politician Responds with Nukes
Representative Eric Swalwell from California (of course) has recently experienced backlash over a tweet. After expressing his desire to hold mandatory buy-backs and to prosecute those failing to comply, he was met with a very negative response from gun owners. One response by Twitter user Joe Biggs stated that this type of infringement would cause war with the American people. Rep. Stalwell’s response? Threaten the populace with nuclear weapons. See the tweet pictured below.
Where Do We Go From Here?
Will we allow our children grow up in a post-Second Amendment America? Our Second Amendment rights have been trampled upon and eroded more than any other right mentioned in the Bill of Rights, a list of acknowledged inalienable rights endowed by our Creator. Is America just one mass shooting away from far-reaching legislation on a national level? If so, what happens then?
In conclusion, we need to stand united as Americans and hold our representatives accountable. The silent majority cannot remain silent. Contact your representatives and urge them to stand against the infringement of our right to bear arms. Urge them to support the restoration of our rights. Remind them that you vote. Educate yourself on the history of gun control in America, proposed legislation, activist groups in your area such as Ohio Carry and Ohio Gun Owners, and your representatives’ voting records. Inform your friends and family members. Join organizations like Gun Owners of America and USCCA (visit our homepage to join USCCA). Finally, take someone that you know that does not support the Second Amendment to the range and help them to experience the joy of shooting.
Remember, “Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean that politics won’t take an interest in you.” -Pericles