Friday, January 30, 2009

Gird your loins... the government is coming!

I am very sorry to have to post this sort of thing, would rather talk bird dogs. But it seems that everyone with an agenda has crawled out from under a rock and is hoping that a new Congress and President will pass and sign their pet piece of legislation. This is not unusual. 

But HR 45 is a serious piece of legislation that will regulate not guns, but people. This bill proposes gun owner licensing that replicates very closely what people in England and Australia are required to do before they may buy, own, or use ANY guns. This bill was introduced by Representative Bobby Rush, Democrat of Illinois on January 6th. There are no co-sponsors, and the HR 45 is currently in The House Judiciary Committee. 

Rush's district is located principally on the South Side of Chicago. It is a minority-majority district and has a higher percentage of African Americans (65%) than any other congressional district in the nation. Rush has the distinction of being the only person to date to defeat President Barack Obama in an election for public office. Rush is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, as well as a former member and founder of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party. I remember when the Black Panthers felt that the right to possess firearms and protect themselves and their community was pretty important. Under this Bill, Bobby himself would probably be denied a Gun License for past 'subversive' activities. 

Here is a summary from the Libary of Congress:

Blair Holt's Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act of 2009 - Amends the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act to prohibit a person from possessing a firearm unless that person has been issued a firearm license under this Act or a state system certified under this Act and such license has not been invalidated or revoked. Prescribes license application, issuance, and renewal requirements.

Prohibits transferring or receiving a qualifying firearm unless the recipient presents a valid firearms license, the license is verified, and the dealer records a tracking authorization number. Prescribes firearms transfer reporting and record keeping requirements. Directs the Attorney General to establish and maintain a federal record of sale system.

Prohibits: (1) transferring a firearm to any person other than a licensee, unless the transfer is processed through a licensed dealer in accordance with national instant criminal background check system requirements, with exceptions; (2) a licensed manufacturer or dealer from failing to comply with reporting and record keeping requirements of this Act; (3) failing to report the loss or theft of the firearm to the Attorney General within 72 hours; (4) failing to report to the Attorney General an address change within 60 days; or (5) keeping a loaded firearm, or an unloaded firearm and ammunition for the firearm, knowingly or recklessly disregarding the risk that a child is capable of gaining access, if a child uses the firearm and causes death or serious bodily injury.

Prescribes criminal penalties for violations of firearms provisions covered by this Act.

Directs the Attorney General to: (1) establish and maintain a firearm injury information clearinghouse; (2) conduct continuing studies and investigations of firearm-related deaths and injuries; and (3) collect and maintain current production and sales figures of each licensed manufacturer.

Write letters.


Parker James said...

I agree. It is important that the reply to this consists of many voices. I have written to Conyers and to my Congressmen.

Hunter Angler Gardener Cook said...

Having covered Congress in my day job for the better part of two decades, I can tell you that a bill with no cosponsors is as dead as Custer's nuts. It is a "brochure bill," intended to show the member's constituents that he's "fighting gun violence."

Keep an eye on the bill to see if it even gets a hearing. Once it passes, say, 50-75 co-sponsors it might have some legs, but there is always the Senate, where there is more adult supervision.

Andrew Campbell said...

Hank: thanks for a moment of levity in what's looking like all kinds of dodgy legislation from the Land of Lincoln. Will need to remember that little metaphor.