Below the Radar: Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act
Article first appeared on Ammoland.com
United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- Perhaps the most dangerous legislation when it comes to our Second Amendment rights isn’t the outright ban – it’s the laws that grant a lot of leeway to bureaucrats and appointed officials. There is a very simple reason for this: Legislators at the local, state, and federal levels can be voted out. The same goes for mayors, governors, and presidents.
On the other hand, bureaucrats are the closest thing to forever you can find in politics. Their actions are hard to stop, just as hard to reverse, they can outlast politicians thanks to civil service protections, and in addition, they have access to friendly media. In short, a bureaucracy empowered to inflict restrictions is a massive threat to our rights.
One classic example is the push to give the Consumer Product Safety Commission the power to recall and regulate firearms and ammunition. We’ve addressed this in our coverage of the Defective Firearms Protection Act and the Firearms Safety Act, and this danger doesn’t just rest on the CPSC.
Other regulatory agencies can get involved. This is why HR 1531, the Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act is so dangerous. Introduced by long-time Representative Peter King (R-NY), it adds people on the terrorism watch list as prohibited persons under 18 USC 922. This, along with the “no-fly” list, has been laid out as objectives of anti-Second Amendment extremists for a while.
It’s one thing when someone is labeled a prohibited person after there has been a conviction for a crime or something similar. But the thing about the “no-fly” and the terrorism watch lists are that they lack many of the due process protections that the current provisions have. In addition, the legislation would permit the Attorney General to withhold information that leads to the inclusion on the terrorist watch list
If someone is to be denied their rights, there has to be due process, and that includes the ability to see the evidence against a person. The “national security” exemption for information should a denial occur from NICS based on the inclusion on a watch list, flies in the face of the notion of due process when Second Amendment rights are involved.
King’s track record on our Second Amendment rights has been very spotty over the years. He has bought into a number of bad bills, but at the same time, as a Republican, his first vote every Congress is for a pro-Second Amendment speaker. His district is one tough for Republicans to hold as well. Second Amendment supporters, though, should contact their Representative and Senators to politely urge them to oppose HR 1531.
About Harold Hutchison
Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post, Strategypage.com, and other national websites.