These are troubling times in our nation, and they have become more -- in my humble opinion -- with the introduction this past January of 2009 of HR 45, the Blair Holt Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act of 2009. The only good thing about this bill is that it when it was sponsored by a representative from Illinois it had no co-sponsors.
If this bill makes it through Congress, it will amend the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act. The end product would be a bill that would prohibit a person from possessing a firearm unless that person has been issued a firearm license under this act or a state system certified under this act.
The bill calls for license application, issuance and renewal requirements. It also prohibits transferring or receiving a qualifying firearm unless the recipient presents a valid firearms license, the license is verified and the dealer records a tracking authorization number.
The bill also calls for firearms transfer reporting and record keeping requirements and directs the attorney general to establish and maintain a federal "record of sale" system.
In addition, the bill would: (1) prohibit transferring a firearm to any person other than a licensee, unless the transfer is processed through a licensed dealer in accordance with national instant criminal background check system requirements, with exceptions; (2) prohibit a licensed manufacturer or dealer from failing to comply with reporting and record keeping requirements of this act; (3) prohibit failing to report the loss or theft of the firearm to the attorney general within 72 hours; (4) prohibit failing to report to the attorney general an address change within 60 days; or (5) prohibit keeping a loaded firearm, or an unloaded firearm and ammunition for the firearm, knowingly or recklessly disregarding the risk that a child (anyone under 18 years of age) is capable of gaining access, if a child uses the firearm and causes death or serious bodily injury.
The bill also prescribes criminal penalties for violations of firearms provisions covered by this Act and directs the attorney general to: (1) establish and maintain a firearm injury information clearinghouse; (2) conduct continuing studies and investigations of firearm-related deaths and injuries; and (3) collect and maintain current production and sales figures of each licensed manufacturer.
In summary, the bill would make it illegal to own a firearm -- any rifle with a clip or any pistol unless
--You are fingerprinted.
--You supply a current driver's license.
--You supply your Social Security number.
--You promise to submit to a physical and mental evaluation at any time the government sees fit.
--You report any address change or change in gun ownership -- through private or public sale -- and pay a fee of $25 for each change.
Section 2.b of H.R. 45 provides, in one fell swoop, the authority of the federal government to supersede the individual states on the matter of gun control and declares that gun control is to be left to the federal government because the states are in need of federal supervision in this regard. It further states that the citizens stand in need of education (as dictated by this legislation).
It is reported that this bill also states that failure to abide by these rules would cause the gun owner to automatically lose the right to own a firearm and said owner would be subject to a year in jail.
As of February 2009, the bill had been referred to the House Judiciary Committee, where it was subsequently referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security.
As President Lyndon Baines Johnson once famously said, "Boys, I may not know much, but I know chicken (poop) from chicken salad." This bill may look like salad to many, but I believe it reeks of something much more foul.
Everyone who enjoys the Second Amendment guarantee of the right to keep and bear arms -- whether for hunting, shooting sports or self-defense and home protection, needs to contact their legislators to oppose this bill.
If it becomes law, I believe it may well be the beginning of the disarming of America.