When Gun Rights Protections Really Aren’t
As many of us remember, there were several battles to protect the 2nd Amendment in Washington State this year. (For a brief recap, please read here, here, here). Thankfully, 2nd Amendment constitutionalists banded together and forced our mushy legislators to defeat every anti firearms bill introduced and supported by Democrats and Republican alike. But there’s a new battle waging in the form of ballot initiatives.
There is a blatantly anti-gun initiative, I-594 that is currently gaining signatures. Please, pay attention when people thrust a petition in your face at the grocery store, we don’t need any one to make the mistake of signing this. I-594 is Mike Hope’s background check bill on steroids (for more steroid jokes, see here). Clearly, this initiative is going to need our full and undivided resources and attention. Nanny Bloomberg and his anti-American group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, are sure to dump millions of dollars into this effort, and we need to be ready for it. There’s no word yet as to whether or not Hope will support this and urge all of us to surrender our rights before they can be forcefully taken from us.
A less blatant threat comes in the form of gun-group supported I-591. This one’s more subtle and you really need to think when you read it. Let’s go to the text, shall we?
“Initiative Measure No. 591
PROTECT OUR GUN RIGHTS
AN ACT Relating to protecting gun and other firearm rights; adding new sections to chapter 9.41 RCW; and creating new sections.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. A new section is added to chapter 9.41 RCW to read as follows:
It is unlawful for any government agency to confiscate guns or other firearms from citizens without due process.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 2. A new section is added to chapter 9.41 RCW to read as follows:
It is unlawful for any government agency to require background checks on the recipient of a firearm unless a uniform national standard is required.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 3. The provisions of this act are to be liberally construed to effectuate the intent, policies, and purposes of this act.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 4. If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 5. This act is known and may be cited as the ‘Protect Our Gun Rights Act.’”
See what I mean? It’s subtle. This initiative protects Constitutional firearms protections (both State and Federal Constitutions) from state lawmakers only. It cedes the rights of Washingtonians completely to the federal government. So when Dianne Finestein, Gabby Gifford, and our daffy Uncle Joe manage to ram a gun control bill, and they will with the weak kneed Republicans in both houses of Congress, it’s over. There will be no fight in Washington State, because 2nd Amendment supporters here will have already given up all control to the federal government. This may even be a totally unintentional error, I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.
Rep. Elizabeth Scott (R, 39th LD) is one of the few folks sounding the alarm on this. Predictably, she’s already being bashed by so-called-conservatives in her home county; calling her (and all who oppose these unconstitutional usurpations) “mindless” and “unthinking.” The authors of I-591 are far more measured in their criticism of Rep. Scott, but the criticism is there along with the spirit of the accusations lobbed at her from the same spineless hack that called her “unthinking.” The initiative is authored by a “2nd Amendment” group that waffled so much on Hope’s HB 1588, that not even the legislators fighting the bill knew where they stood. First they supported, then didn’t, and never did take a meaningful stand for or against.
Rep. Scott is the among the best legislators in the State, and a member of the Freedom Agenda Team, seemingly the only bloc of legislators actually working to protect liberty and the Constitution in this backwards State. She deserves to be listened to and afforded all of the respect that we can muster.
Please read her warning on this dangerous initiative, and please, please, please, if you’re presented with a petition for it, don’t sign it!
Here is the warning about I-591 from Rep. Scott:
“ I-591 “Protect Our Gun Rights” signature sheets were included in WAC newsletter. I am a member of WAC, a Life member of NRA, and a concealed carry permit holder. I am advising folks NOT to sign it, for several reasons.
1. It’s poorly written and will likely run into Constitutional issues; state court would likely overturn it if passed.
2. It gives way too much power to feds with the phrase “unless a national standard is required.” So, we trust the feds these days to determine what our state’s gun laws should be? No way.
3. Having two gun-related issues on the same ballot, with one being a “yes” and one being a “no”, is too complicated, takes too much time and money to inform the public about, and will make it harder for us to defeat I-594. Case in point: the marriage referendum and initiative on the same ballot. Infighting, voter confusion, spreading the money around instead of targeting one clear message all led to the passage of gay marriage in our state.
4. I am grateful to Alan Gottlieb for his tireless defense of our Second Amendment rights, but…. . . . . . . . . . The writer of I-591 is Alan Gottlieb who is on the board of WAC and heads up CCRTBA and GOAL. He worked on HB 1588 the universal background check bill to try to make it better for pro-gun people. But having his involvement on 1588 allowed Mike Hope and the Dems to say “and we have Alan Gottlieb at the table and he supports this bill.” Outrageous. Thankfully pro-gun folks saw through it and came out in droves and helped us defeat that bill. But why is he then turning around and mucking up the issue again with this poorly-written initiative at a time when we should all be hyper-focused on defeating I-594? In order to defeat 594, we HAVE TO educate all our friends and neighbors that Universal Background Check = Registration=Confiscation.
5. If both I-591 and I-594 pass, they will be in conflict with each other so they’ll go to the State Supreme Court to choose one. Which one do you think our current State Supreme Court would pick? I hope I-591 will not make it to the ballot in November 2014. In the meantime, please do not sign it, and please DO use this time to teach that I-594 Universal Background Check equals Gun Registration which will then lead to Confiscation.”