One major issue I had with the so-called boyfriend loophole is that with every expansion of who is prohibited, we inch closer to a day when just about everyone is prohibited.
With last year’s passage of a bipartisan gun control bill in the wake of Uvalde, one of the many things contained–one that had nothing to do with Uvalde–is the closure of this so-called loophole.
Just months later, it seems federal lawmakers are trying to further expand this definition.
House and Senate lawmakers are pushing for new gun control restrictions that would permanently prohibit people from buying or owning firearms if they are convicted of domestic abuse while in a dating relationship.
The move effectively bans abusive dating partners from owning a gun, but not permanently. The 2022 law allows abusive partners to be removed from NICS five years after the completion of their sentence and if no other crimes were committed, and only puts abusers on NICS list in the first place if they were “recently” in a relationship that led to abuse.
Legislation introduced last week by Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., seeks to permanently block abusers in dating relationships from buying or owning a gun, regardless of how long ago they were in a that relationship.
Their bill eliminates language in the current law that requires people to have “recently” been in an abusive relationship. The new restriction would also apply to convicted stalkers.
In other words, if you were in a toxic relationship decades earlier, got falsely accused of striking your then-girlfriend, and simply pled out to a misdemeanor just to make the whole thing go away, you’d be screwed under this bill, no matter how long you’ve kept your nose clean since then.
Yeah, can’t imagine why I’d have an issue with this.
What’s more, there’s been absolutely zero time to even evaluate whether or not the current law has had any kind of impact. We simply don’t know if this has somehow curbed domestic homicides or anything of the sort.
That’s because it doesn’t matter to anti-Second Amendment lawmakers like Klobuchar and Dingell. For them, it’s not really about what’s needed so much as it’s about what makes them feel better. In this case, the bill is about letting them believe they’ve somehow made women safer.
Of course, domestic abusers don’t actually need guns to kill their significant others. At least, not when the abuser is a male of average strength and his target is a woman of average strength.
At that point, a gun is largely irrelevant.
But what this is about, however, is about punishing as many gun owners as humanly possible. It’s about slowly expanding the list of prohibited people inch by inch until only a select few can be gun owners.
It’s ironic to me that Klobuchar is sponsoring this bill, though. After all, she’s championed sentencing reform in the past. In other words, she thinks drug offenders should have a chance to rebuild their lives, but someone who was involved in a single incident decades ago should be stripped of their right to keep and bear arms indefinitely, under the guise of closing a boyfriend loophole that doesn’t actually exist.
If there’s an upside here, it’s that there’s really not much chance of this even making it out of committee, at least in the House. The Senate may filibuster it, but even if they don’t, the GOP-controlled House isn’t likely to cooperate on such a measure.
The so-called boyfriend loophole has all the closure it’s going to get for the time being. Frankly, I’m pretty sure what was passed last year won’t accomplish a thing anyway besides jam up a few people who mean no harm to anyone else. Why would a new law do more?