Rhode Island Democrat pushes draconian "assault weapon" ban

Gun-grabbing Democrat Representative Joseph S. Almeida introduced deceptively titled “Safe Firearms Act” (H 7583) yesterday to the Rhode Island General Assembly yesterday.

The citizen control law (PDF) is more restrictive than controversial laws in New York and Connecticut in some respects. It bans the purchase of so-defined “assault weapons” immediately upon enactment, and requires registration of all firearms that meet the definition.

The bill, referred to the House Judiciary Committee, targets selective-fire and semi-automatic rifles, shotguns, and pistols, both rimfire and centerfire, and adds a constructive possession clause that would deem any otherwise compliant firearm an “assault weapon” if the owner also owned:

A part or combination of parts designed or intended to convert a firearm into an assault weapon, as defined in this section, or any combination of parts from which an assault weapon, as defined in this section, may be rapidly assembled if those parts are in the possession or under the control of the same person

In other words, if you managed to find a firearm that was not covered under the law either by name or list of cosmetic features (pistol grip or thumbhole stock, folding or telescopic stock, forward pistol grip, flash hider, centerfire rifle with a fixed magazine of more than ten rounds, total length of less than 30 inches, etc) and bought an otherwise legal attachment, the firearm would be deemed an “assault weapon,” whether they were attached or not.

The bill would also affect any semiautomatic pistol with a threaded barrel, regardless of caliber or configuration.

H 7583 requires the registration of all so-defined “assault weapons”, which includes:

a description of the firearm that identifies it uniquely, including all identification marks, the full name, address, date of birth and thumbprint of the owner, and any other information as the department may deem appropriate. [my emphasis]

The compiled list can be turned over to both law enforcement and “the director of the department of behavioral healthcare, developmental disabilities and hospitals (BHDDH).”

The bill severely restricts the transport and possession of where the “assault weapon” may be transported.

The bill graciously exempts law enforcement and manufacturers who sell their guns out of state. Rep. Almeida wants the jobs and tax revenue of gun companies, he simply doesn’t want employees to be able to own what they produce.

A previous attempt at an assault weapon ban in the state failed last year.  Previous “assault weapons” bans in the United States at both the state and national level had not been shown to have any effect on criminal behavior, but does turn otherwise law-abiding citizens into criminals for the mere possession of firearms they may have had for years prior to the law being enacted.

If the actions of citizens in Connecticut and New York to similar laws are any indication, most citizens with ignore the unconstitutional registration requirements, and tens of thousands will chose to become felons rather than comply.