2A advocates launch effort to defeat gun control initiative

We’ve written here before about Oregon’s IP 17, the only gun control measure that anti-2A activists have been able to place on this fall’s ballot across the United States. But now, the anti-gun initiative has both a new name and a new campaign aimed at defeating it at the polls.

IP 117 is now officially Measure 114, and Second Amendment activists in the state have launched a new website designed to inform the public about the effects of the proposal and why it’s bad news even for those who don’t want to purchase a firearm in the future. Stop114.com lays out several reasons why the proposed “permit-to-purchase” law is a disaster in the making for both individual citizens and law enforcement agencies across the state.

Under Ballot Measure 114, you could literally wait forever for permission to purchase a home defense firearm.

The measure requires a “class” with live fire training before a person can apply for a permit to purchase a firearm. There are virtually no facilities that will be available for this training. For first time gun buyers this could well require that you have a gun before you can get a permit to buy a gun.

The measure only allows those approved by police to provide the required “training” to apply for a permit. Police in Oregon are underfunded and understaffed. There is no plan in place to actually provide any training and virtually no  police have the facilities or manpower to provide classes. Police in urban areas are already not responding to most violent crimes. Police in rural areas are spread thin and rarely have the facilities for the required class.

The “permitting agent” can demand “any additional information” to issue the permit opening up endless opportunities for abuses.

The Oregon State Sheriff’s Association has estimated that if a person somehow could complete the required training, the permitting process would cost sheriffs almost $40,000,000.00 annually. There is nothing in the measure that provides any funding and the fees included would not come close to covering the costs. The estimate of costs to local police is $51.2 million dollars the first year and 47.5 million in subsequent years. The “anticipated revenue” is only $19.5 million dollars. The sponsors of the measure have no plan to pay for it.

We recently highlighted those unfunded mandates for law enforcement, which will end up having the same result as de-funding local police and sheriffs departments since they’ll be forced to allocate money currently used for everything from hiring to training in order to comply with the new “permit-to-purchase” requirements. That means money that could be spent directly fighting crime will instead be spent on a gun control bureaucracy aimed squarely at those who want to stay on the right side of the law. Stop114.com quotes several sheriffs talking about the potential impact, including Sherman County Sheriff Brad Lohrey.

Not only does my Sheriff’s Office lack the funding, staff, and facilities to meet the permit process and training requirements that IP 17 outlines, I also fear the burdens IP 17 will place on the citizens I serve. IP 17 would harm the poor, the rural, and those that quickly need a firearm for self-defense the most. The hurdles IP 17 places on people will mean only the people with money, with time, with access to advanced shooting facilities, and with advanced training resources will be able to purchase firearms. If passed, IP 17 will be a tragic infringement on our rights and it will absolutely violate the State and Federal Constitutions. IP 17 is completely unacceptable.

There are a lot of folks out there who, sadly, aren’t going to be swayed by a constitution-based argument against Ballot Measure 114, but given that it’s being billed as something that will make Oregonians safer, I think it’s important to hammer home the effects that this will have both on the average citizen’s ability to protect themselves and law enforcement’s ability to protect and serve their community at large. Law-abiding citizens and law enforcement alike will lose if this initiative becomes law, and that’s a message that Oregon gun owners need to send to their unarmed friends and family between now and November.