March 1, 2013
Neil Heslin, father of a boy who was killed in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, spoke to the Senate Judiciary Committee in near graphic detail about how his small son was murdered with a gunshot to the head.
Democrats on Capitol Hill have ramped up their motion toward strengthening legislation toward an all-encompassing assault weapons ban.
Senators Chuck Schumer and Tom Coburn have agreed upon a proposal for a government-controlled universal background check system on firearms purchases. The stalemate on the negotiations table has been permanent record keeping becoming part of the background checks.
Senator Dianne Feinstein said that bringing her assault weapons bill “is a life mission for me.”
Last month, Feinstein introduced “The Assault Weapons Ban of 2013” which prohibits the sale, transfer, importation and manufacture of those firearms listed in the bill.
Feinstein’s bill that seeks to redefine what is an “assault weapon” to include a more encompassing amount of guns. There would also be an initiative of forcing Americans to register their guns with the federal government under the National Firearms Act (NFA). This would give the federal government authority to confiscate weapons that were identified in violent acts.
Feinstein hopes to:
• Restrict the modifications to firearms available to citizens
• Classify specific modifications as illegal
• Restricting the acquisition of rocket launchers
With the redefining of assault weapons, semi-automatic, centerfire, rimfire rifles will be illegal; as well as the M1 Carbine and Ruger Mini-14. No more than 10 round magazines will be available. There are 150 types of guns on Feinstein’s “list” that should be banned; including most types of rifles pistols and shotguns.
The NFA will collect taxes of an estimated $200 per gun purchased as well as the owner file their fingerprints, photograph, address and obtain permission before taking the gun across state lines.
Guns could not be sold privately or passed down to heirs. The owner would relinquish their gun to the US government upon death.
The date of manufacture of magazines would be a necessity to reign in imported firearms, while it is now not common place to date-stamp domestically produced gun magazines. The restriction on handguns, although it violates the Supreme Court ruling that affirms that possession of handguns is the right of all Americans, will be all-encompassing. The hypocritical nature of this addition is that Feinstein is a registered handgun owner.
Conversely, Senator Chuck Grassley said that Feinstein’s proposed legislation “raises a lot of constitutional questions.”
On a recent episode of “Face the Nation” Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper asserted that universal background checks are of his state’s highest priority.
Hickenlooper said: “I think universal background checks are the highest of those three remaining. Just in the sense that we did 320,000 background checks through our gun dealers and gun shows in Colorado last year and of those we found — I mean, people say, ‘well criminals aren’t stupid, they’re not going to go through a background check,’ hey, what a surprise they are stupid, right? — so we intercepted over 1,000 felons with criminal records most of them violent: 600 burglars, 40 people who had either been accused or convicted of homicide, we issued arrest warrants for over 100 individuals because they signed up for the background check.”
Hickenlooper explained that mental health is extremely important in regard to gun control. A new mental health bill entitled, “Strengthening Colorado’s Mental Health System: A Plan to Safeguard All Coloradans,” outlines the statewide response to a mental health crisis with 5 state-government funded mental health clinics, specialized care centers and substance abuse centers will funnel mental health care records in real-time through the Colorado Bureau of Investigation by the authority of the Colorado State Judiciary system to control information relayed through firearm purchases.
Those background checks would be facilitated by Colorado InstaCheck .
Cody Wilson, founder of Defense Distributed, has developed a project to educate about the viability of 3D printing firearms. Their intention is to “produce and publish a file for a completely printable gun.”
This 3D printing technology would not fall under Feinstein’s assault weapons ban.