• Gun Rights on the Chopping-Block as Early as Next Week

  • Massie Bill Would Keep Our Kids Safe

  • Battle over Loretta Lynch Nomination Gets ‘Curiouser and Curiouser’

    -- Call, email and show up at Town Hall meetings of your Senators Read More
  • Pro-gunners Squeak Out a 2-0 Victory in the Senate

    -- Rubio & Jordan introduce bill to repeal D.C. gun ban Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

Legislative Action Center LINK

facebook_icontwitter_iconyoutube_icon

GOA News

  • Against Lynch
  • Guns
  • Shut Down UN
  • CCW Reciprocity
  • Budget Battle

Demand that Loretta Lynch require 60 votes in order to invoke cloture on her nomination!

Senator Mitch McConnell
Majority Leader
United States Senate
317 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510-1702

Read More

We Like Our Guns 

Independence Day is still a few months away, but that didn’t stop Americans from recently celebrating a fantastic anniversary.

Read More

GOA-backed Amendment Could “Potentially Shut Down Parts of the United Nations”

Several gun owner rights victories have occurred recently in the united States Senate, including a vote that shut down the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty. Among those victories is Senator Jim Inhofe's amendment, which Gun Owners of America claims has the potential to shut down parts of the United Nations if they stay on course with the ATT.

First, Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) added a committee amendment to deal with Obama's DOJ and their anti-gun Operation Choke Point. As a result, the bill wasn't even taken out on the floor of the senate. Well done, Senator Crapo.

Read More

Constitutional Carry Reciprocity Advances 2nd Amendment Rights

Recently, some of our good friends issued a statement criticizing federal reciprocity legislation.  We agree with them that the Nugent bill (H.R. 402) has problems, because it would force Americans in “constitutional carry” states to obtain permits in order to exercise their God-given rights. 

Read More

GOA rallies its members as gun debate heats up in Senate budget battle

Gun rights groups are rallying their members behind a series of budget measures aimed at strengthening the Second Amendment and restricting gun control efforts. 

As the Senate debates the federal government’s 2016 budget, Republicans and gun advocates are pushing for a number of amendments that would expand concealed-carry laws and block the Obama administration from issuing what opponents call a “backdoor” ban on guns.

Read More

Self-Defense Corner

  • Detroit Woman
  • Shoots Suspect
  • 30+ Shots
  • Defensive Gun Use
  • Intruder Shot

Detroit woman shoots at 3 intruders; 1 in custody, 2 on run

DETROIT - A woman on Detroit's east side shot at three males who were breaking into her home Tuesday afternoon, striking one of them.

Detroit police say one person -- the person who was shot -- is in custody while they are actively searching for the other two.

Read More

Man Intervenes for Wheelchair-Bound Neighbor, Shoots Suspect

On March 3, a Little Rock, Arkansas, man witnessed two suspects allegedly breaking into the home of his neighbor, who is “elderly and wheelchair-bound.” He armed himself and intervened, shooting one of the suspects.

According to Arkansas Matters, when the armed citizen–Charles Dorsey–saw two suspects breaking into his neighbor’s home, he “asked his sister to call 911.”

Read More

Magazine Capacity Matters – Homeowner Exchanges 30+ Shots With Home Invader

This story is a perfect example of why magazine capacity matters. Sure, most of the defensive gun uses we report on this site are over and done with just a few rounds (or no rounds fired at all). However, there are situations where you might find yourself in a battle for your life and every round in that magazine will count.

Read More

Defensive Gun Use of the Day: Terminal Recidivism Edition

Years before a coroner pronounced 31-year-old Jermoid Wheeler dead after trying to break into a home, he had been sentenced to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit robbery. He was given credit for time served and released in June 2014, after serving just half of his term. According to court documents, Wheeler’s criminal record dates all the way back to 2004 and includes drug charges, domestic abuse and armed robbery . . .

Read More

Police: Homeowner exercised ‘constitutional right’ when he shot intruder

A Columbus, Ohio, homeowner fatally shot a man after he kicked in his front door Friday morning, and police say the man was most likely justified in his actions.

The 71-year-old homeowner called 911 just after before noon, according to reports from local media.

Read More

As Senate Reconvenes... Veterans Disarmament Bill Offers False Hopes Of Relief For Gun Owners

Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102
Springfield, VA 22151
(703)321-8585

"I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past." -- Patrick Henry, in his "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death" speech of March 23, 1775

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Patrick Henry had it right. Forget the past, and you're destined to make the same mistakes in the future.

Gun control has been an absolute failure. Whether it's a total gun ban or mere background checks, gun control has FAILED to keep guns out of the hands of criminals.

But gun control fanatics still want to redouble their efforts, even when their endeavors have not worked. Congress is full of fanatics who want to expand the failed Brady Law to such an extent that millions of law-abiding citizens will no longer be able to own or buy guns.

For months, GOA has been warning gun owners about the McCarthy-Leahy bill -- named after Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT). These anti-gun legislators have teamed up to introduce a bill that will expand the 1993 Brady Law and disarm hundreds of thousands of combat veterans -- and other Americans. (While McCarthy and Leahy are this year's primary sponsors, the notorious Senator Chuck Schumer of New York was a sponsor of this legislation in years past.)

Proponents of the bill tell us that it will bring relief for many gun owners. But to swallow this, one must first ignore the fact that gun owners would NOT NEED RELIEF in the first place if some gun owners (and gun groups) had not thrown their support behind the Brady bill that passed in 1993 and were not pushing the Veterans Disarmament Bill now.

Law-abiding Americans need relief because we were sold a bill of goods in 1993. The Brady Law has allowed government bureaucrats to screen law-abiding citizens before they exercise their constitutionally protected rights -- and that has opened the door to all kinds of abuses.

The McCarthy-Leahy bill will open the door to many more abuses. After all, do we really think that notorious anti-gunners like McCarthy and Leahy had the best interests of gun owners in mind when they introduced this Veterans Disarmament Bill? The question answers itself.

TRADE-OFF TO HURT GUN OWNERS

Proponents want us to think this measure will benefit many gun owners. But what sort of trade off is it to create potentially millions of new prohibited persons -- under this legislation -- and then tell them that they need to spend thousands of dollars to regain the rights THAT WERE NOT THREATENED before this bill was passed?

Do you see the irony? Gun control gets passed. The laws don't stop criminals from getting guns, but they invariably affect law-abiding folks. So instead of repealing the dumb laws, the fanatics argue that we need even more gun control (like the Veterans Disarmament Bill) to fix the problem!!!

So more people lose their rights, even while they're promised a very limited recourse for restoring those rights -- rights which they never would lose, save for the McCarthy-Leahy bill.

The legislation threatens to disqualify millions of new gun owners who are not a threat to society. If this bill is signed into law:

  • As many as a quarter to a third of returning Iraq veterans could be prohibited from owning firearms -- based solely on a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder;
  • Your ailing grandfather could have his entire gun collection seized, based only on a diagnosis of Alzheimer's (and there goes the family inheritance);
  • Your kid could be permanently banned from owning a gun, based on a diagnosis under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

Patrick Henry said he knew of "no way of judging of the future but by the past." The past has taught us that gun control fanatics and bureaucrats are continually looking for loopholes in the law to deny guns to as many people as possible.

GUN CONTROL'S ABOMINABLE RECORD

A government report in 1996 found that the Brady Law had prevented a significant number of Americans from buying guns because of outstanding traffic tickets and errors. The General Accounting Office said that more than 50% of denials under the Brady Law were for administrative snafus, traffic violations, or reasons other than felony convictions.

Press reports over the years have also shown gun owners inconvenienced by NICS computer system crashes -- especially when those crashes happen on the weekends (affecting gun shows).

Right now, gun owners in Pennsylvania are justifiably up in arms because the police scheduled a routine maintenance (and shut-down) of their state computer system on the opening days of hunting season this year. The shut-down, by the way, has taken three days -- which is illegal.

And then there's the BATFE’s dastardly conduct in the state of Wyoming. The anti-gun agency took the state to court after legislators figured out a way to restore people's ability to buy firearms -- people who had been disarmed by the Lautenberg gun ban of 1996.

Gun Owners Foundation has been involved in this Wyoming case, and has seen up close how the BATFE has TOTALLY DISREGARDED a Supreme Court opinion which allows this state to do what they did. In Caron v. United States (1998), the U.S. Supreme Court said that any conviction which has been set aside or expunged at the state level "shall not be considered a conviction," under federal law, for the purposes of owning or buying guns. But the BATFE has ignored this Court ruling, and is bent on preventing states like Wyoming from restoring people's gun rights.

Not surprisingly, the BATFE has issued new 4473s which ASSUME the McCarthy-Leahy bill has already passed. The bill has not even been enacted into law yet, and the BATFE is already using the provisions of that bill to keep more people from buying guns.

The new language on the 4473 form asks:

Have you ever been adjudicated mentally defective (which includes a determination by a court, board, commission, or other lawful authority that you are a danger to yourself or to others or are incompetent to manage your own affairs)....

Notice the words "determination" and "other lawful authority." Relying on a DETERMINATION is broader than just relying on a court "ruling," and the words OTHER LAWFUL AUTHORITY are not limited to judges. In other words, the definition above would allow a VA psychologist or a school shrink to take away your gun rights.

This is what McCarthy and Leahy are trying to accomplish, but the BATFE has now been emboldened to go ahead and do it anyway. This means that military vets could potentially commit a felony by buying a gun WITHOUT disclosing that they have Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome because a "lawful authority" has decreed that they are a potential danger to themselves or others.

No wonder the Military Order of the Purple Heart is opposed to the McCarthy-Leahy bill. On June 18 of this year, the group stated, "For the first time the legislation, if enacted, would statutorily impose a lifetime gun ban on battle-scarred veterans."

MORE RESTRICTIONS, NOT RELIEF

Supporters, like the NRA, say that they were able to win compromises from the Dark Side -- compromises that will benefit gun owners. Does the bill really make it easier to get your gun rights restored -- even after spending lots of time and money in court? Well, that's VERY debatable, and GOA has grappled this question in a very lengthy piece entitled, Point-by-Point Response to Proponents of HR 2640.

In brief, the McClure-Volkmer of 1986 created a path for restoring the Second Amendment rights of prohibited persons. But given that Chuck Schumer has successfully pushed appropriations language which has defunded this procedure since the 1990s (without significant opposition), it is certainly not too difficult for some anti-gun congressman like Schumer to bar the funding of any new procedure for relief that follows from the McCarthy-Leahy bill.

Incidentally, even before Schumer blocked the procedure, the ability to get "relief from disabilities" under section 925(c) was always an expensive long shot. Presumably, the new procedures in the Veterans Disarmament Act will be the same.

Isn't that always the record from Washington? You compromise with the devil and then get lots of bad, but very little good. Look at the immigration debate. Compromises over the last two decades have provided amnesty for illegal aliens, while promising border security. The country got lots of the former, but very little of the latter.

If the Veterans Disarmament Bill passes, don't hold your breath waiting for the promised relief.

ACTION: Please use the letter below to contact your Senator. You can use the pre-written message below and send it as an e-mail by visiting the GOA Legislative Action Center (where phone and fax numbers are also available).

----- Pre-written letter -----

Dear Senator:

While the NRA does some good work in the areas of shooting competitions, firearms training, etc., THEY DO NOT SPEAK FOR ME when they support the so-called School Safety Act, sponsored by Patrick Leahy in the Senate and Carolyn McCarthy in the House (HR 2640).

Gun owners don't support this legislation, better known as the Veterans Disarmament Act. The Military Order of the Purple Heart is opposed to it, having stated on June 18 of this year, that "For the first time the legislation, if enacted, would statutorily impose a lifetime gun ban on battle-scarred veterans." Gun owners don't want to expand the Brady Instant Check, we want to repeal it. It is simply un-American to penalize individuals (like veterans) with no due process by assuming they are guilty until proven innocent.

Anti-gun zealots are always looking to expand the number of citizens who are prohibited from exercising their Second Amendment rights. I don't believe that this bill will provide the relief that supporters are promising.

After all, the McClure-Volkmer of 1986 created a path for restoring the Second Amendment rights of prohibited persons. But given that Chuck Schumer has successfully pushed appropriations language which has defunded this procedure since the 1990s (without significant opposition), it is certainly not too difficult for some anti-gun congressman like Schumer to bar the funding of any new procedure for relief that follows from the McCarthy-Leahy bill.

The Leahy bill is gun control, pure and simple, and voting for it tells me you don't care about a little thing known as the Constitution.

Sincerely,

Op-Ed Articles