Easy Sound Bites or Real Safety – Notes from the 2019 Gun Rights Policy Conference

Mental Health Hooded Robber
Easy Sound Bites or Real Safety – Notes from the 2019 Gun Rights Policy Conference

U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- It takes more than virtue signaling to make us safer. That is the message I took away from the 2019 Gun Rights Policy Conference. I met the people who are doing the real work of making us safer at home, at our offices, and in our schools. They live with the real-world problems that go far beyond 144 character solutions and political press-releases. I came away with hope, but progress isn’t easy.

We live in an imperfect world. Crime and accidents are real. Mental illness is real, and our laws are deeply flawed. The great news is that people can have an episode of mental illness and get better. Quoting Michael Sodini of Walk the Talk America,

“We don’t say, watch out for George, he is on his meds. We say watch out for George because he’s off his meds.”

Life is hard. People suffer through loss and addiction.. and they heal. We talk about the horrible mass murders we’ve seen in the news but we ignore the much larger number of suicides that happen every day. The mental health community is only starting to figure out armed america. Here are some of the real-world problems we face.

  • Your friend is having some emotional problems. He wants his doctor to adjust the dosage on his medications. While he and his doctor are sorting that out, your friend wants you to hold his firearms for him. In your state, the legislature deliberately confused temporary possession of a firearm with ownership of the gun. You can’t help keep your friend safe without buying his guns and transferring them through a gun shop. You both commit a felony if your friend hands you his guns. Would you break the law to help your friend stay safe?
  • Your neighbor was attacked by a stalker and filed a police report. Unfortunately, due to mandatory background check laws, you can’t loan her a firearm for self-defense. To make the situation worse, her stalker can submit an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) and demand that your neighbor undergo a psychiatric exam. Many victims of sexual abuse show post-traumatic stress. Due to red-flag-gun-laws, the court orders your neighbor to be disarmed. Would you break the law to help your neighbor protect herself?
  • Your friends have to move out of their house for a few days while the house is fumigated and repaired. They want to bring some of their firearms to your house for safe storage. Mandatory background check laws require that all of you go to a gun shop, conduct background checks even though you already have lots of guns, and then pay for the transfer of every firearm. Your friends decide to leave their guns at home in a locked closet. Does that make us safer or leave us in greater danger that their guns will be stolen while their home is open to strangers?
  • You were involved in a car accident and you’re on pain meds. Because of the medications, lack of sleep, and the nagging pain, you know you aren’t thinking clearly. You want your friends to hold your firearms until you’re better. Since you can’t go to a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL) to make the exchange, both you and your friends become felons as your friends remove the guns from your house and store them at a gun shop.

Life is more complex than press-release-sound-bites about gun-control. The good news is that we’re slowly recognizing the problem of mental health. Responsible gun owners are building their own solutions to keep themselves, their families, and their friends safe.

In time, the law will catch up to the reality of armed america. Until then, it is up to us to look out for each other. Do the right thing and reach out to a friend.

More about GRPC in later posts. Please stay safe.

About Rob MorseSlow Facts

The original article is here. Rob Morse writes about gun rights at Ammoland, at Clash Daily, and on his SlowFacts blog. He hosts the Self Defense Gun Stories Podcast and co-hosts the Polite Society Podcast. Rob is an NRA pistol instructor and combat handgun competitor.

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tomcat (@tomcat)
2 years ago

Currently, guns are not registered and the gun grabbers have no proof of ownership. We can still accept a friend’s firearm or lend one to a friend. Until they pass the “advanced” background check with registration we can carefully act as normal. I don’t mean lend a gun to a loonie or someone off their meds. Step by step they are headed for registration and that will lead them to total control. Don’t let it happen.

joefoam (@joefoam)
2 years ago

Gun crimes are down (per FBI stats) as gun ownership increases. Drug dependence is on the increase with more OD deaths every year. Tell me again how guns, not medications, are more dangerous to the public?

Deplorable Bill
Deplorable Bill (@deplorable-bill)
2 years ago

The 2A, as I understand it, relates, identifies and mandates that ALL Americans have the right and duty to keep and bare arms. Obviously you can’t do this while in jail or the loony farm. I have had my experiences with manic-depressive/bi polar people. You will not ever see me handing any of them a firearm—- ever. Most were OK when on their meds but to a person, they did not like how they felt when on their meds and felt more powerful when NOT on their meds. I VERY nearly lost my life to one of these — twice.… Read more »

Gene Ralno
Gene Ralno (@gene-rano)
2 years ago

Red flag laws were created to dilute power licensed to the psychiatric community and transfer it to unqualified persons more obedient to democrats, e.g., local judges and disgruntled aunts. Due process demands reports from two psychiatrists, one from each side, legal representation, arraignment, indictment and trial by jury. Democrats and weak minded Republicans are victims of the bum’s rush. Nobody wants criminals to have firearms but politicians on both sides who support this notion will regret the day they ever heard of red flag laws. They’re so incendiary, they could cost the president his deserved reelection. Their legacies will carry… Read more »

Tionico (@tionico)
2 years ago
Reply to  Gene Ralno

along with the drugs so many of them are, or recently have been, on. From what I’ve read, some 90% of the mass murderers who used guns (and likely those who used other means, but no stats that I’ve seen exist) were or recently had been on SSRI and other “mood enhancing” drugs…. which drugs bring with them known side effectes of thoughts and impulses toward violence to themselves and/or others. Yet I see almost NO concern about these drugs and their widespread use. But so many want to lock up the tools such people “MIGHT” use to harm others…..… Read more »

Gene Ralno
Gene Ralno (@gene-rano)
2 years ago

Use of the term “gun violence” is part of the democrat flimflam because it narrows the focus to fit the objective. The objective of course is to disarm the American public. Think about it. Have you ever heard the term “gun gentleness” used by a politician or anyone else? No? Then ask yourself why the democrat party doesn’t focus on just violence instead of gun violence. Fact is they’re after guns, not violence. They couldn’t care less about the entire field of violence because it commingles too many criminals with peaceable, lawful citizens. Democrats hope to transform firearms owners into… Read more »