NRA Applauds Reintroduction and Expansion of SHARE Act

Governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands Sign an Order Allowing the Seizure of Weapons
Governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands Sign an Order Allowing the Seizure of Weapons
National Rifle Association Institute For Legislative Action (NRA-ILA)
National Rifle Association Institute For Legislative Action (NRA-ILA)

Fairfax, VA – -(Ammoland.com)-  With hurricane season now upon us, U.S. states and territories are preparing for a barrage of potentially damaging weather.

In the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI), however, those preparations include an order by Gov. Kenneth E. Mapp for the National Guard to seize residents’ lawfully-owned firearms and ammunition, ostensibly as a means of promoting public order and protecting life and property during Hurricane Irma.

The order states in no uncertain terms that the Adjutant General of the U.S. Virgin Islands National Guard is “authorized and directed to seize arms, ammunition, explosives, incendiary material and any other property” deemed necessary to the mission of maintaining or restoring order during the storm.

Certainly, the rest of America’s thoughts and prayers are with the USVI as they recover from the damage Irma caused. Nevertheless, Gov. Mapp’s Sept. 4 order was an inexcusable incursion on the right of the U.S. citizens who reside on the USVI to protect themselves from the all-too-predictable outbreaks of looting and crime that can occur when normal emergency services are over-taxed by an extraordinary event. Simply put, it violated the U.S. Constitution and threatened to put innocent people at further risk.

America has seen similar overreaches in the past, most notoriously during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, when local officials ordered the confiscation of lawfully-owned firearms from New Orleans residents. First responders had been overwhelmed by the demands of the storm, and those who had not managed to evacuate were dealing with virtual anarchy.  For many gun owners, the shocking site of a frail woman being slammed to the ground in her own home by police enforcing the post-Katrina order remains an indelible image of the very sort of violent firearm seizures that some claim could never happen in the U.S.

The NRA intervened in federal court and was able to halt the New Orleans confiscations and obtain an order requiring the return of the seized firearms. Nevertheless, the city delayed compliance with the order for as long as it could, including requiring unrealistic documentation from gun owners whose lives had been turned upside by the storm. Only in 2008 did the NRA and the city agree on mutually acceptable terms for the return of the unlawfully confiscated property.

The NRA also promoted legislation to prevent government officials from using their emergency powers as a pretext for disarming the citizenry. In 2006, Congressman Bobby Jindal (LA) led the fight to protect America’s gun owners against these abuses by introducing H.R. 5013 in the House, a final version of which was signed by President George W. Bush in October of that year.  Now codified at 42 U.S.C. § 5207, the law prohibits persons acting under color of federal law, receiving federal funds, or acting at the direction of a federal employee from seizing or authorizing the seizure of lawfully-possessed firearms during a state of emergency. The majority of U.S. states now have similar laws.

The NRA quickly condemned Gov. Mapp’s order and pledged to take any necessary legal action to ensure that the people of the USVI were not deprived of their constitutionally protected arms when they might need them the most.

Barely 24 hours later, Gov. Mapp appeared before a national audience on the Tucker Carlson Show and furiously backpedaled, bizarrely claiming that the order simply meant that Guard units could purchase necessary emergency supplies at retail without the formalities of normal procurement procedures. “This is not about seizing anybody’s personal property,” he insisted.

That on-the-fly revision was too much even for the “fact-checking” (and typically antigun) website Snopes, which acknowledged there was no support for this interpretation in the actual words of the order itself.

Just what Gov. Mapp meant to do or thought he was doing with his “seizure” order remains unclear. To date, the NRA has received no information that any actual seizures have occurred.

Nevertheless, the incident should serve as a wake-up call for those who insist that the threat of civilian firearm confiscation is a scare tactic invented by the NRA. Americans saw it themselves this week, stamped with the gold seal of officialdom.

As ever, your NRA will remain vigilant and prepared to act so that no law-abiding American is forced to face danger without the protection guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.

About:
Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Visit: www.nra.org

  • 15 thoughts on “NRA Applauds Reintroduction and Expansion of SHARE Act

    1. i can only say. being a Vietnam Marine combat vet and a life member of the NRA, i don’t give a DAMN WHAT order is ever given anyone try and take my firearms will find it VERY HOT TO DO.
      that’s not BRAG, JUST FACT.

    2. It all comes down to the individual and how they truly feel about their rights. Either they will pony up their self protection when the “Man” comes for their stuff, or they will find that streak of “1775” in their heart some where and decide that it ain’t gonna happen. I have had this discussion with many knowledgeable folks and they say pretty much the same thing ‘Those who have the training and education on where our rights come from, and a lot being ex-military combat vets won’t have any problem telling the “man” to “get stuffed.”” But then there are the posers who talk big but cave in at the first sign of threat.
      You have to decide for yourself, and only you can do this! You must decide if you are willing to live on your knees as a slave, or die on your feet as a free man.

      “To those willing to fight for it …Freedom has a flavor the protected will never know.” LCpl Tim Craft USMC, Khe Sahn, RVN – 1968

      I’m not a combat vet, but I’ve been to war and have decided that I value my freedom a bit too highly to just hand over the goods.

    3. A very good friend of mine who had a extensive career in La law enforcement, had a nightmare experience with the N. O. Police when he went to retrieve his aunt and uncle after the levee broke. The only thing that saved him, by his account, was a Red Cross vehicle was lost and pulled up on the scene. He had been told to abandon his vehicle, with Two 80 year olds and walk. They initially demanded to search for weapons in his vehicle. He was still a reserve deputy in another parrish at the time. Another fact, not all confiscated weapons we’re returned, some were designated damaged and destroyed, to turn up later in criminal investigations. Having served as a Firefighter and then a Deputy I have to echo Ol Vets disquieting feelings. Some of the old guard are gone, I see many younger ones today who worry me immensely. As far as the US Virgin islands go. If your rich you own the world there, if not your a victim of third world idiots with the clout of the Federal Government. As a side note, I am a proud lifetime NRA member, for reasons such as this.

      Always in Liberty……….

    4. I assume with high probability that the local National Guard area commander told Gov. Mapp that he would not obey any order to seize lawfully owned firearms. Further to that he was probably told that taking privately owned firearms would violate the Constitution of the United States, and he, the Gov would be breaking the law. Now you and I know this but apparently Gov. Map did not. This would suggest to me that he has never even read the Bill of Rights, let alone the rest of the Constitution.

      1. I’m impressed by your assumption of “high probability” that the NG area CO would refuse to obey the order. That was emphatically NOT how the various agencies, including the NG, reacted after Katrina. I can only hope you are correct.

        1. @OS…Have always had this disquieting feeling about if the SHTF how Troops and LEO of all levels would react if given unlawful orders. Would the SWAT mentality take over ?

          1. There are a lot of young people, just getting into positions of authority, that neither know anything about civil rights, nor care. They do know that carrying out orders will get them promoted.
            I plan to invite the whole squad in for coffee on a cold day; cold beverage on a hot day; and capture them. Then I will have OV, OS, Enester, Rev joe m, tcat, and a host of my favorite comment makers e-mail them into submission.

          2. Many years ago an AF LEO told me that they’d been given orders that, in case of emergency, they were to confiscate weapons from the civilian populace. I know he swore the same oath I did, I guess he just didn’t understand that part in civics class about the Constitution being the law of the land. If he was willing to do that, 30+ years ago, what do you think the children today are willing to do.
            “I was just following orders” doesn’t cut it.
            Luckily he never had to follow through on his statement, one of us wouldn’t have had dinner that night. We still aren’t speaking.

    5. It’s not uncommon for the selected leaders of said area’s to be in back door deals with the local drug lords and affiliates.
      The gun grab only helps criminals, and to add to that, when the law officers follow these orders they are embedded criminals! and remove legally owned arms with no intent to return. These arms are not categorically removed. They have zero accountability and the agencies obtain free firearms that get destroyed or auctioned off. Also considering class 3 firearms and the expenses of those items are gone. Here’s a good reason for a gun trust. Get your firearms insured folks. There are no 100% guarantees, but with the two said provisions you will have a higher success rate at getting them back and or suing the mayor and or govenors office for second amendment violations and creating a way for criminals to thrive. During Katrina I know a many officers, who were also U.S veteran’s, refused to carry out said orders. The sheriff’s office is typically all too eager to commit these violations as I have noted in my 50+ years. I support all law enforcement on typical and not so typical situations, but when these gun grabs happen and they do not provide tight security for people they put in a handicap against criminals, they loose my support!
      If you rob people of property, you deserve to be robbed of your life or freedom.

    6. Governor Mapp needs to be arrested for violating the law, convicted, then sent to prison where he can see what it’s like to be disarmed among criminals.

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