Common Sense Gun Laws and The Hunter

Common Sense Gun Laws Few things make me mad like politicians and media proposing Common Sense Gun Laws. This sweeping notion that more gun laws and regulations would prevent the acts of deranged people or reduce gun crime is just idiotic. Time and time again the far left pushes that more gun laws that only law abiding citizens would follow could save our kids from school shooting.

My opinion may not be the most popular one but it is the correct one for me.

A Patchwork of State and Federal Laws

People with histories of mental illness (Like the shooters) and a proclivity toward violence are not supposed to be able to purchase firearms in the United States. But a patchwork of state and federal laws only apply to people who have been institutionalized or deemed by authorities to be dangerous. We as a nation have refused to create a database of the mentally ill, and only the institutionalized show up on background checks.

Federal law mandates background checks meant to keep convicted felons and people with mental illnesses from legally acquiring guns, but the rules only apply to people who buy weapons from licensed dealers. This means that people, including those with mental illnesses, can buy what they please from other individuals at gun shows or elsewhere. At the state level, standards vary and are bedeviled by poor tracking and a lack of coordination with federal authorities, making enforcement spotty. These practices have got to stop, Not only to protect our kids but to protect ourselves!

The ISPS (The International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis) defines The term mental illness as “generally used when someone experiences significant changes in their thinking, feelings or behavior. The changes need to be bad enough to affect how the person functions or to cause distress to them or to other people.”

Sen. Joe Manchin, an avid hunter and lifelong member of the National Rifle Association, says it’s time for all sides in the gun policy debate to move beyond the political rhetoric and begin an honest discussion about reasonable restrictions on guns. He goes on to state “This is bigger than just about guns,” “It’s about how we treat people with mental illness, how we intervene, how we get them the care they need, how we protect our schools. It’s just so sad.” I agree with Sen. Joe Manchin Now is the time to act to fix the problems wail it is fresh in the hearts and minds of many. Now is the time to help the mentally ill and to get them the help that they deserve.

Everyone of the recent shooters were mentally ill in one way or another! This is a topic that we can no longer avoid! This needs brought before congress and the senate, to change the current mental health laws to allow them to get treatment and to block them from buying guns! Not new Common Sense Gun laws restricting law abiding citizens.

The NIMH (National Institute of Mental Health) estimated 26.2 percent of Americans ages 18 and older or about one in four adults suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder in a given year. When applied to the 2004 U.S. Census residential population estimate for ages 18 and older, this figure translates to 57.7 million people. Even though mental disorders are widespread in the population, the main burden of illness is concentrated in a much smaller proportion of about 6 percent, or 1 in 17 who suffer from a serious mental illness. In addition, mental disorders are the leading cause of disability in the U.S. and Canada.

Ben Carson defends linking gun control to the Holocaust

He was then asked by CNN presenter Wolf Blitzer: “Just clarify, if there had been no gun control laws in Europe at that time, would six million Jews have been slaughtered?” Mr Carson said he doubted Hitler would have been able to achieve his goals if …

Addressing gun laws will not fix this issue

englandAs you can see 57.7 million people is not a number we can ignore any longer. Addressing gun laws will not fix this issue! We need to start addressing Mental Health, The standards of care that we offer these individuals and a clear tracking system that is incorporated into the federal background check for the purchase of a firearm. We as owners of firearms need to look at the way that or weapons are stored. I am a form believer that most of these tragedies in the past few years could have been easily avoided if the owner had properly stowed there firearms! Gun locks are free at most police department, that when properly used render a firearm useless. Weapons should be stowed separate from ammunition to create a multiple step process to render the firearm useful. These are all simple cheap solutions that might have helped prevent these tragedies! Now is the time to think about these things to make sure that these tragedies never accrue again.

Common Sense Gun Laws

So lets take a look at the US gun laws and what has been put in place to prevent such events from happening again. The US Government has done an excellent job creating the current gun laws. The current gun laws restrict law abiding citizens enough, but lets take a look anyways!

Under federal law:

  • Common Sense Gun laws for-dummiesIt is illegal and punishable by up to 10 years in prison for the following people to receive, possess, or transport any firearm or ammunition:
  • Someone convicted of or under indictment for a felony punishable by more than one year in prison, someone convicted of a misdemeanor punishable by more than two years in prison, a fugitive from justice, an unlawful user of any controlled substance, someone who has been ruled as mentally defective or has been committed to any mental institution, an illegal alien, someone dishonorably discharged from the military, someone who has renounced his or her U.S. citizenship, someone subject to certain restraining orders, or someone convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor.
  • It is illegal and punishable by up to 10 years in prison to sell or transfer any firearm or ammunition to someone while “knowing” or having “reasonable cause to believe” this person falls into any of the prohibited categories listed above.
  • It is illegal to “engage in the business of importing, manufacturing, or dealing in firearms” without a federal license to do so.
  • It is illegal for any federally licensed firearms business to sell or transfer any firearm without first conducting a background check to see if the buyer/recipient falls into any of the prohibited categories listed above.
  • It is illegal for anyone except a federally licensed firearms business to sell, buy, trade, or transfer a firearm across state lines.
  • Under federal law, private individuals are not required to a conduct a background check before selling or transferring a firearm to someone who lives in the same state, but it is illegal and punishable by up to 10 years in prison for a private individual to sell or transfer a firearm while “knowing” or having “reasonable cause to believe” that the recipient falls into one of the prohibited categories above.
  • Some states such as California require background checks for all firearms transactions, including those conducted between private individuals.

As you can see the current laws already restrict criminals and the mentally ill from purchase and possession of firearms. The current laws do great restricting sales and purchases for the people that follow them. The problem is not The current laws that are in place but with the process of the background check.
During 2002 and 2003, out of 17 million background checks resulting in 120,000 denials, the federal government prosecuted 154 people (about one-tenth of 1% of the denials). As you can see the background checks are doing what they are suppose to but without information on mental health and criminal records put into the system we will keep having these violent criminals slip through the cracks!

Documentation is not our only issue!

A 1997 U.S. Justice Department survey of 14,285 state prison inmates found that among those inmates who carried a firearm during the offense for which they were sent to jail, 0.7% obtained the firearm at a gun show, 1% at a flea market, 3.8% from a pawn shop, 8.3% from a retail store, 39.2% through an illegal/street source, and 39.6% through family or friends. Criminals are not purchasing firearms in a way that requires a background check. If the background checks are not conducted such as in a pawn shop or from person to person sales were they are not required then how are we to enforce the laws and stop the criminals? We need to make a requirement that puts a background check on the sale of every firearm! If you are a law abiding citizen then this is not to much to ask!

Based on a survey of the US in 2010, and calculated by in the US 40-45% of Households have a Gun equaling around 47-53 million people, 30-34% of US adults own a gun equaling in 70-80 million, and of those 70-80 million gun owners 17-19% 40-45 million own a Handgun.

Based on survey data from a 2000 study published in the Journal of Quantitative Criminology, U.S. civilians use guns to defend themselves and others from crime at least 989,883 times per year. That is almost an estimated 1 million instances where a legal gun owner stopped a crime! These are the reports that we do not see in the news! In A 1994 survey conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Americans use guns to frighten away intruders who are breaking into their homes about 498,000 times per year. If you think about it these are staggering numbers and could have very well have ben a very different topic that we are talking about here.

Lets take a look at the 2nd amendment.

“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.”

I found this breakdown of the second amendment that i Believe to be the best representation of what this amendment truly means as it was written to protect the people (IE: You and me) on the Gun broker forums

“A well-regulated (not to be confused with poorly equipped) militia (that’s any able bodied male between the ages of 18 and 45 years of age according to the Militia Act of 1792, and to the best of my knowledge, has remained uncontested presently. It is NOT the National Guard. The Constitution was ratified in 1789, and the Bill of Rights shortly after. The National Guard was created in 1904, over a century later.) being necessary (not negotiable or optional) to the security of a Free State (depending on who you are, there may be two different opinions. The first would be synonymous with a free country or boundaries, but I believe it meant a free state of being, versus one of oppression or involuntary servitude such as a slave, serf, peon or subject. After all, our Forefathers fought to end their own oppression, why would they not seek to prevent it in the future?)Here comes the good part… the RIGHT (not power) OF THE PEOPLE (not the military, not law enforcement, not those elitists, not the politicians, and certainly not the criminals) SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.”

The second amendment retains our right to protect ourself from a tyrannical government. It does so by maintaining that we have the civil liberties to own a firearm.

Senate Democrats renew push for common sense gun laws

Senate Democrats unveiled plans on Thursday for gun control reforms that include closing background check loopholes, expanding the background check database, and tightening regulations on illegal gun purchases.

How can we as hunters help?

varvel-nation-mourns-gun-control-4_3_rx512_c680x510We as hunters and a nation need to come together and have a reasonable discussion on Mental Health, Possession of firearms, and the process by which they are obtained. Not in a way to create new laws but in a way to fix the great system that we already have in place! We need better documentation of mentally ill persons, a more robust background check required with the sale of every firearm, and a better understanding of firearms safety as a nation. Every person in the US should know the 2nd amendment word for word. For the 2nd amendment may be the only thing that saves the rest of the constitution! Remember Guns don’t kill people, People kill people and that makes is a tragedy. We don’t need new Common Sense Gun laws, we need new Common Sense Mental Health laws!

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Gregory Beckman

About the Author:

Hi, I am Gregory Beckman, as the main owner of Military Hunting and Fishing let me tell you a little bit more about myself. I am currently an active duty member in the United States Coast Guard. I have been privileged to traveling the world. My experiences have shaped the way that I see the world and my memories will stick with me for a lifetime. Although I may not live in the country, the country lives in me. Traveling the world I have had the chance to experience the wonders of nature in many different places, meeting many different people and tasting wild game that the normal person would not get to experience. Although these experiences have kept me away from home, it has instilled a deep passion of hunting and fishing in my blood. Thank you for joining our site, and I look forward to interacting and sharing stories of our hunting adventures. Gregory A. Beckman
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