AP Photo/Matt Rourke
New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez has introduced new legislation requiring all gun owners in the United States to receive a federal gun license before exercising their Second Amendment rights, as well as banning commonly owned firearms the bill designates as “assault weapons.” The bill has already attracted the support of Massachusetts senator and presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, who was on hand Thursday as Menendez held a press conference to promote the legislation.
“With approximately 100 Americans killed every day from gun violence, it’s long past time for Congress to stand up to the gun lobby and confront this deadly crisis head-on,” Warren said.
Under the legislation, Americans would be required to obtain a federal or state license to buy or own a gun, federal background checks would be required for all gun purchases, military-style assault weapons would be banned, and minimum age to buy a weapon or ammunition would be set at 21.
Menendez’s latest call for stronger gun legislation comes a month after four people were gunned down in Jersey City, in which two people killed a police officer and then three people in a kosher supermarket.
Of course those attackers were prohibited under federal law from possessing firearms, so any federal gun license wouldn’t have made a difference.
The legislation would set up a “may issue” system for licensing Americans to own firearms, giving the federal government the ability to deny a license to anyone if there is:
‘‘(i) reliable, articulable, and credible information that the individual has exhibited or engaged in behavior to suggest the individual could potentially create a risk to public safety; or
‘‘(ii) other existing factors that suggest that the individual could potentially create a risk to public safety.”
That vague language assures that the process would be abused, and many current legal gun owners would be deprived of their right to keep and bear arms. Heck, gun control advocates believe that simply owning a firearm could potentially create a risk to public safety, so why wouldn’t they use that language to deny anyone and everyone who applies (with exceptions for the politically powerful and connected, of course).
The measure also imposes a huge tax increase on both firearms and ammunition, which would preclude some Americans on the lower-end of the economic scale to simply be unable to afford to exercise their Second Amendment rights. That’s fine with Warren, who seemingly doesn’t think they actually have any rights under the Second Amendment to begin with. Warren was asked by the New York Times about what the Second Amendment means to her, but her only response was what the Second Amendment isn’t about, at least in her eyes.
“All three of my brothers are gun owners and we can respect the right to own a gun. But we have a responsibility to keep our kids safe. The Second Amendment does not guarantee the right to own weapons of war. It definitely does not prevent the federal government from taking real action to keep our loved ones safe. I’ll do everything in my power as president to lead this fight.”
The new licensing and gun ban bill would certainly be real action from the federal government, but it wouldn’t do a thing to keep our loved ones safe. In fact, the government has no duty or obligation to protect us as individuals, which is one reason why it’s so important that our Second Amendment rights remain intact.
This bill stands no chance of passing in the U.S. Senate, but it’s a clear indication of what awaits gun owners if Democrats retake the White House and the U.S. Senate in the 2020 elections. They’re done nibbling around the edges of our constitutional rights, and they’re now engaged in the biggest and most well-funded campaign to destroy the Second Amendment in our nation’s history.