Weekly Spotlight 12/8/23 – 12/14/23
Senate Democrats Seeking More Gun Control to Address “Public Health Epidemic”
Last week, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing titled: “The Gun Violence Epidemic: A Public Health Crisis.” The Democrat-led committee covered a litany of proposed gun control laws that would further restrict the ability of law-abiding Americans to protect themselves and their loved ones. This included misguided Red Flag laws, widespread bans on so-called “assault weapons,” mandatory gun storage rules, and universal gun registration. And they’re pushing these policies in the name of protecting “public health.”
We’ve seen this before. Politicians often use the excuse of public health to strip away rights that are protected under the Constitution. Earlier this year in New Mexico, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham issued a sweeping “emergency public health order” that banned the concealed carry of firearms in public places in Albuquerque. This blatant violation of the Second Amendment received immediate backlash from lawmakers and influencers on both sides of the aisle. And yet, lawmakers in the U.S. Senate are now trying to do the exact same thing.
The reasoning for more gun control pushed by Senate Judiciary Committee members should be met with the same ire. There is not a public health crisis when it comes to gun ownership. The real crisis is violent criminals not being held accountable for breaking the numerous gun laws already on the books. Look at Washington, DC, our nation’s capital which has experienced more than 900 carjackings in 2023, a more than 100% increase since last year. Washington, DC, has some of the strictest gun laws on the books, but robberies and murder with firearms are up because soft-on-crime policies are not putting criminals behind bars, not because guns are too accessible in the District. Punishing law-abiding gun owners for the crisis created by the actions of criminals is not the answer.
Last week’s hearing should not only cause concern among the millions of responsible American gun owners, it should also drive them to action. There should be no room for additional stringent federal gun laws passed under the guise of protecting “public health.” Our elected leaders must acknowledge the real problem of violent crime and do something to rein in cities and states that are not holding criminals accountable. Contacting your lawmakers to urge them not to support more misguided gun control policies is a great place to start.
OTHER NEWS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED
- Fox News: Police in this blue state will continue enforcing ‘draconian’ handgun law ruled unconstitutional by court
Maryland State Police will continue enforcing the state’s handgun law for now, despite a federal appeals court ruling that the licensing requirement is unconstitutional. “At this time, the HQL law remains in effect and there are no immediate changes in the process to purchase a firearm in Maryland,” the department wrote in an agency-wide advisory after last week’s ruling.
Recent polls have shown a significant increase in the percentage of gun owners, the amount of gun ownership, and acceptance of the utility of firearms for self-defense. Some of the increase comes from record and sustained high levels of firearms sales. Some of the higher numbers are from gun owners who are “coming out of the closet.” They are examples of a changed attitude and increased acceptance of admitting to firearms ownership in public.
This month, court decisions in two states struck down gun control laws pushed by Democrats in Maryland and Oregon. Last week, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled that a law in Maryland that took effect in 2013 is unconstitutional, according to The Washington Post. The law required handgun buyers who already went through background checks and waiting periods to obtain an additional “handgun qualification license” and wait up to 30 days to have it approved.
- Cleveland.com: Bill To Ban Authorities From Enforcing Federal Gun Laws Could Pass Ohio House Within Weeks
Ohio House Republicans want to prevent state and local authorities from helping to enforce any federal laws or rules regarding guns or ammunition via legislation that could pass the chamber before the end of the year. House Speaker Jason Stephens said this week that he expects House Bill 51 to pass the House in 2023, sending it to the Ohio Senate for further consideration. It aims to have Ohio join at least 17 other states in deeming itself a “Second Amendment Sanctuary State.”