United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- You may think this is legislation we’ve covered before. But you’d be wrong. There are a number of licensing schemes percolating in Congress, ranging from the Blair Holt Firearm Owner Licensing and Record of Sale Act to the Handgun Purchaser Licensing Act to the Sabika Sheikh Firearm Licensing and Registration Act.
HR 687, the Handgun Licensing and Registration Act, has been proposed by Representative Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), joins the collection of licensing schemes. This bill is not as intrusive as the Sabika Sheikh act, and unlike the Blair Holt act, it only targets handguns. Still, this bill is a very bad piece of news when it comes to our Second Amendment rights.
What this bill does is to impose a federal licensing scheme on any state that doesn’t already have one. Now, this licensing scheme treats anyone who wishes to exercise their Second Amendment rights like a common criminal, requiring a photograph and fingerprints. It’s an effort to stigmatize wanting to own a handgun, even though the Heller decision made it clear that owning a handgun is protected under the Second Amendment.
Coleman has not released any statement on this bill on her official website. That being said, Coleman’s track record has been that of a reliable vote against our rights. But what is particularly concerning about this bill it the lack of details.
Say what you will about the monstrosities proposed by Sheila Jackson Lee or Elizabeth Warren, but they at least told us what to expect. Coleman’s bill, though, is vague on exact details. The text puts in some qualifications but doesn’t discuss things like how much the fee would be. In addition, the federal scheme is only applicable in states that don’t pass their own licensing scheme. Of course, state licensing schemes can be even more stringent than the requirements in Coleman’s bill.
The fact of the matter is that this licensing scheme isn’t about safety. It’s about deterring Americans from exercising their Second Amendment rights. Representative Coleman could, if she wanted to address the misuse of firearms, be pushing something akin to Project Exile or she would sign on to the Prosecuting Gun Crimes Saves Lives Act.
The fact is, the Handgun Licensing and Registration Act needs to be defeated. Second Amendment supporters should contact their Senators and Representative and politely urge the defeat of HR 687.
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.