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Federal Self Defense Bill Support H.R. 648

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Reasonable Gun Control - Support H.R. 648
By Geoff Metcalf

Published 02. 16. 03 at 22:35 Sierra Time

Who would have thunk it? A Congressional bill has been introduced to defend your Second Amendment rights that is reasonable and makes sense. Which probably means Schumer/ Boxer/Feinstein/Clinton will go ballistic vilifying it.

H.R. 648 was recently introduced by Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC), "To protect the right to obtain firearms for security, and to use firearms in defense of self, family, or home, and to provide for the enforcement of such right."

I have long argued that law abiding citizens should be armed, trained, and prepared.

H.R. 648 not only reaffirms many of my arguments but legislates reason. By congressional standards the bill is startlingly straightforward.

It states that: "A person not prohibited from receiving a firearm by Section 922(g) of title 18, United States Code, shall have the right to obtain firearms for security, and to use firearms -- in defense of self or family against a reasonably perceived threat of imminent and unlawful infliction of serious bodily injury; in defense of self or family in the course of the commission by another person of a violent felony against the person or a member of the person's family; and in defense of the person's home in the course of the commission of a felony by another person." Not bad.

Even better, it provides a citizen recourse if refused "permission" to purchase or own a weapon: "A person whose right under subsection (a) is violated in any manner may bring an action in any United States district court against the United States, any State, or any person for damages, injunctive relief, and such other relief as the court deems appropriate."

However, the "Findings" section (remarkably) includes some surprising statistics. These are facts most Second Amendment supporters already know, but it is significant to see them included in an actual congressional bill as supporting documentation:

(1) Police cannot protect, and are not legally liable for failing to protect, individual citizens, as evidenced by the following:

The courts have consistently ruled that the police do not have an obligation to protect individuals, only the public in general.
(B) Former Florida Attorney General Jim Smith told Florida legislators that police responded to only 200,000 of 700,000 calls for help to Dade County authorities.

(C) The United States Department of Justice found that, in 1989, there were 168,881 crimes of violence for which police had not responded within 1 hour.

(2) Citizens frequently must use firearms to defend themselves, as evidenced by the following:

(A) Every year, more than 2,400,000 people in the United States use a gun to defend themselves against criminals -- more than 6,500 people a day. In other words, each year, firearms are used 60 times more often to protect the lives of honest citizens than to take lives.

(B) Of the 2,400,000 self-defense cases, more than 192,000 are by women defending themselves against sexual abuse.

(C) Of the 2,400,000 times citizens use their guns to defend themselves every year, 92 percent merely brandish their gun or fire a warning shot to scare off their attackers. Less than 8 percent of the time, does a citizen kill or wound his or her attacker.

(3) Law-abiding citizens, seeking only to provide for their families' defense, are routinely prosecuted for brandishing or using a firearm in self-defense. This is NUTS.

(4) The courts have granted immunity from prosecution to police officers who use firearms in the line of duty (creating a privileged class). Likewise, law-abiding citizens who use firearms to protect themselves, their families, and their homes against violent felons should not be subject to lawsuits by the violent felons who sought to victimize them. This 'should' be a no brainer.

H.R. 648 is an artfully crafted bill that even moderates in Congress should be able to embrace. Opponents will find themselves on thin partisan ice.

Some knuckle draggers are going to gripe, "Hey, that ain't good enough!" Well it is a damn sight better that what we have now. Please remember the gun grabber crowd hasn't broadened their unconstitutional-anti-gun base all at once. They have been fighting (and winning) a war of incrementalism. Pete Shields, founder of Handgun Control, said in 1976, "We'll take one step at a time, and the first is necessarily -given the political realities - very modest…Our ultimate goal, total control of hand guns, is going to take time."

We need to support H.R. 648. Call, write, and demand your representative vote for it.

This bill is not politics as usual. It is important. It is critical. And in this era of heightened threat, it is desperately needed.

If you are not part of the solution (to get this bill into law) then you become part of the problem.
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