It looks like most Senate Democrats aren’t particularly eager to put up votes on gun control bills that are doomed to failure, but that’s not stopping some of the most vociferous anti-gun senators from reminding us what their agenda is all about.
A new gun control proposal by Sens. Cory Booker, Richard Blumenthal, and Robert Menendez would require all gun owners to be licensed by the federal government, and that’s just the start of the unconstitutional infringements on our 2A rights contained within the newly introduced legislation.
According to the bill text, the Federal Firearm Licensing Act will require residents to complete a written firearm safety test and hands-on testing, which includes firing testing, to get the license to acquire a firearm.
The license will also require those wanting to buy a gun to submit a criminal background check, fingerprints and proof of identity.
The bill would set up a “may issue” licensing process for owning a gun, with all Americans over the age of 21 who want to exercise their Second Amendment rights first having to get permission from the U.S. Attorney General, who “may” issue a federal gun license to those deemed fit to own one (under-21s need not apply at all, because they’re flatly prohibited from obtaining a federal gun license). The AG, on the other hand, “shall” revoke that license if they decide that a gun owner “poses a significant danger of bodily injury to self or others.” If that sounds like a “red flag” gun seizure law, you’re right.
The license, by the way, would only be good for a single firearm purchase, so every time you want to buy a gun you’d have to go through the whole process from start to finish again.
The bill goes even further by requiring gun sellers to report details of the transaction to the federal government within three business days. while another section makes it clear that private citizens would not be legally allowed to sell a firearm to someone else without going through an FFL.
It shall be unlawful for any person who is not a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, or licensed dealer to transfer a firearm to any other person who is not so licensed, unless a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, or licensed dealer has first taken possession of the firearm for the purpose of complying with subsection (t).
Upon taking possession of a firearm under paragraph (1), a licensee shall comply with all requirements of this chapter as if the licensee were transferring the firearm from the inventory of the licensee to the unlicensed transferee.
The many constitutional concerns are obvious here. This legislation would turn the Bill of Rights on its head by making gun ownership a privilege to be doled out by the federal government, rather than a right of the people that the government cannot infringe. But Booker, et al have no constitutional qualms here; they don’t believe the Second Amendment protects an individual right in the first place, so they have no trouble whatsoever with their bill violating that right.
I actually wish this bill was going to get a hearing in the Senate; not because I want to see it become law but because I would love to hear Booker, Menendez, and Blumethal try to explain how this would work in practice. How long do you think it would take the federal government to license 80 to 100-million gun owners all across the country? Equally as important, how would that many gun owners ever be able to get access to a range and the required training (the specifics of which are not included in the gun control legislation) in a timely manner? And perhaps most importantly, where are you going to put the millions of Americans who won’t or are unable to comply with the law once you’ve charged them with a felony punishable by five years in a federal prison?
Actually trying to implement this law would be a nightmare for legal gun owners, which is exactly the point of the bill. This is a clear attempt to criminalize a constitutional right in order to prevent Americans from exercising it. Thankfully, there’s a better chance of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard reuniting than this bill passing the Senate this year, but we can’t ever forget the true intentions of the gun control lobby and their Democratic allies; not “common sense gun safety,” but outright criminalization of a fundamental civil right.