CO Bill Banning People Convicted Of Violent Misdemeanors From Owning Guns Advances

(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

By federal law, only those convicted of felons or domestic violence are barred from owning a firearm, not people with lesser charges such as violent misdemeanors like a simple assault charge. This is probably a good thing since so many of those misdemeanor charges spawn out of youthful indiscretions or momentary lapses of judgment and aren’t indicative of a broader pattern.

If they are, they usually end up resulting in a felony charge sooner or later anyway, and the problem takes care of itself.

Then again, in the wake of a mass shooting, everything goes on the table, especially in an anti-gun state like Colorado. Now, they’re looking to bar people convicted of violent misdemeanors from owning guns.

The first of three bills introduced after the mass shooting at a King Soopers in Boulder cleared its first committee late Wednesday night.

If it becomes law, the bill would prevent people from buying a firearm for five years after being convicted of certain violent misdemeanors, including some crimes of child abuse, sexual assault, cruelty to animals, and violating a protection order.

The man arrested for the shooting in Boulder pled guilty to a violent misdemeanor for punching a high school classmate in 2017. Investigators say he passed a background check in order to buy his gun.

“Persons convicted of violent misdemeanors are more likely to be arrested for violent crimes in the future. Communities should not be forced to tolerate risks like this, as the people of Boulder now know too well,” said Peter Fog with Colorado Faith Communities United To End Gun Violence.

Dr. Garen Wintemute, head of California’s Violence Prevention Research Program, told lawmakers that research in his state found people who have been convicted of violent misdemeanors and purchase a gun legally are 9 times more likely to be arrested for murder, rape, robbery or aggravated assault when compared to gun buyers without a criminal record.

See, this is one of those vague stats anti-gunners like to throw around. Nine times more likely than…what? If the chances of being charged with any of those crimes are 0.0001 percent and it jumps up to 0.0009 percent, then it’s really not much of an issue. The odds are still ridiculously good that someone isn’t a threat.

They throw around numbers like that to scare people, but they don’t give you a frame of reference with which to truly understand what those numbers mean.

Regardless, though, I’m going to repeat my position from every time they try to expand the list of prohibited people. If the crime is severe enough to strip someone of their constitutionally protected rights for the rest of their life, then they’re severe enough to be upgraded to a felony.

If you can’t do that, then clearly they’re not that big of a danger, now are they?

Of course, this isn’t all the bill tries to do, either.

The bill also closes what gun control advocates describe as the “Charleston loophole” — a federal policy allowing a licensed gun dealer to sell a weapon to someone if their background check isn’t completed within three days. Under the bill, the seller would have to get the results of a Colorado Bureau of Investigation background check before transferring a gun.

So now they can deny anyone the ability to purchase a firearm by simply dragging their feet indefinitely. After all, that’s why there was a limit to how long a person had to wait in the first place. People were concerned that was a possibility, so they capped it at three days to return a check. If not, then one is assumed to have passed, then no one had to worry about being held up indefinitely from exercising their Second Amendment rights simply because of bureaucratic BS.

Colorado, however, doesn’t care about your rights. They’re going to tread violent misdemeanors like violent felonies and take a big, steaming dump on everyone else’s rights while they’re at it.

It’s a beautiful state, but there’s absolutely no way I could put up with that.