Crime Bill Still A Problem

Sen. Hatch’s “Juvenile Crime” Bill Still a Problem

ACTION: Let your Senators know that S. 10 still has major problems with it! Call the Capitol at 1-800-522-6721. You can also send a Western Union mailgram (1-800-651-1486) to both Senators for only $7.95. The preprinted messages give Senators several real-life scenarios where S. 10 will victimize honest gun owners.

ANALYSIS: Despite some minor changes, the “new” S. 10 is unconstitutional and still victimizes honest gun owners by dramatically increasing existing penalties for many insignificant, technical violations. Consider the following scenarios:

1. Three guys from work regularly get together with their families (and children) for safety training and an informal target shooting competition. Although the teenagers are under continuous parental supervision, the teenagers do not possess and keep in their possession at all times a written note from the parents authorizing them to possess a handgun during these bimonthly events (required by 18 U.S.C. 922 (x)). Could the parents be treated as “criminal street gangs” under this bill and be hit with a MANDATORY MINIMUM sentence of 5 years in jail? (Section 203 of S. 10.)

S.10 (Old) YES   S.10 (New) YES

2. If a parent takes his sons to handgun target practice on a particular day, without the note of authorization (as mentioned above), could S. 10 treat the parent as an organized crime figure and impose a draconian sentence of 20 years upon him for this one time event? (Sec. 206 of S. 10.)

S.10 (Old) YES   S.10 (New) YES

3. You drive downtown and back, passing within 1,000 feet of a school in both instances, carrying a gun in your glove compartment for self-protection. Can you be sent to prison for 20 years? (Section 206 of S.10.)

S.10 (Old) YES   S.10 (New) YES

4. Five adult men often go hunting together, and like to tinker with their rifles. One afternoon, they put a folding stock on one of their rifles, to make it easier to carry in the field. Another day, they put a muzzle brake on the rifle, to make the follow-up shot more accurate. Can they be hit with a MANDATORY MINIMUM sentence of 5 years? (Section 203 of S. 10.)

S. 10 (Old) YES   S. 10 (New) YES

5. You own one of the largest firearms businesses in the country for the purchase and resale of used firearms. Unknown to you, two of the firearms in your enormous inventory are stolen. A court subsequently determines you should have conducted extensive background checks with respect to each firearm you purchased. Can you be sent to prison for 20 years? (Sec. 206 of S. 10.)

S.10 (Old) YES   S. 10 (New) YES

6. Your neighbor, who is being stalked by her violent ex-husband, asks you — a gun dealer — to sell her a handgun without complying with the Brady Bill harassment period. You agree, but, as you are walking back to obtain a blank Form 4473, you think better of it, and refuse to sell her the gun. Could you be imprisoned for the same prison sentence as if you had actually sold the gun? (Biden Amendment in Committee.)

S. 10 (Old) NO   S. 10 (New) YES

7. You are found guilty of possessing an illegal machine-gun collection, having negligently made a minor misstatement under the 1934 Act. Is a court REQUIRED to order you to forfeit your collection to the government, rather than being able to sell them to a neighbor? (Biden Amendment in Committee.)

S. 10 (Old) NO   S. 10 (New) YES

8. If you are a firearms manufacturer or dealer who commits more than one paperwork error, could you be treated like a Mafia hitman in the case of virtually all recordkeeping violations? (Section 206 of S. 10.)

S. 10 (Old) YES   S. 10 (New) NO

9. As a firearms dealer, you make two careless recordkeeping errors. Can Handgun Control sue you and force you to forfeit your business? (Sec. 206 of S. 10.)

S. 10 (Old) YES   S. 10 (New) NO

Use this quote in your faxes and e-mails:

“While Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) . . . has made some changes to S-10, there are other provisions which are of concern to gunowners…. S-10, which was reported out of the Judiciary Committee by a 12-6 vote, would impose a 20-year sentence for minor mistakes involving semi-automatics, school zones and supervised handgun use by young people.”   — The New Gun Week (August 20, 1997)