This past January, Texan Representative Sheila Jackson Lee introduced a bill to the House Judiciary Committee designed to strip Americans of the most detrimental constitutional right. H.R. 127, also known as the Sabika Sheikh Firearm Licensing and Registration Act, is a clear violation of the Second Amendment and perfectly exemplifies why gun rights activists consider gun control to be a governmental overreach.
In order to become a legal gun owner under H.R. 127, a person must go through the long and expensive process to become licensed, as well as additional licensing requirements to display antiques and to own any semi-automatic long gun, noted in this bill as “military-style weapons.” One of the many requirements to become licensed is to go through a psychological evaluation. A government bureaucrat will determine whether or not an individual is capable of practicing their constitutional right to self-defense. Although seemingly harmless, this psychological background check will be based upon any history of “mental illness, disturbance, or diagnosis.” This could mean that a woman who had been attacked and most likely suffers from PTSD would be deemed incapable by the standards of H.R. 127, and consequently prevented from defending herself in any future offense.
Gun owners must register each firearm, the date it was acquired, and where it will be stored. This registry is open not only to the Attorney General, who must be notified of any and all transactions with firearms but also to the public. This public database will display the name and addresses of those who own a firearm. Anyone and everyone will be able to see which household does and does not have a gun, making the unarmed general populace more vulnerable to violent crime. Logically, those that are left defenseless will become the largest targets.
Before the draconian punishments listed in this bill, Representative Lee mentions that on top of the licensing fees, in order to be considered a legal gun owner one must also take part in an annually-renewed gun owner’s liability insurance. The federal government will essentially be forcing citizens to pay for the stripping of their own rights.
If a person has a firearm or ammunition in his or her possession without the appropriate licensing, then he or she will be fined at least $75,000 and likely imprisoned for fifteen to twenty-five years. If a person is to loan, transfer, or sell a firearm without notifying the Attorney General, he or she will be fined $50,000-75,000 and possibly imprisoned for at least ten years. If someone were to use a person’s firearm to commit suicide, then the owner of that firearm will be charged between $100,000 and $150,000 and/or imprisoned twenty-five to forty years…they will surely have enough time in jail to grieve. Finally, if a person is to be caught without the proper insurance, he or she will be fined $50,000-100,000 or imprisoned for ten to twenty years, maybe both.
Without the ability of a people to defend themselves from an unjust government, it can only be argued that the rights of those individuals will cease to exist. The human rights violations that have been witnessed throughout history often were made possible through the disarmament of the citizenry. A contemporary example would be the ongoing onslaught of the Venezuelan people. Unarmed protestors were not given the capability to defend themselves against the security forces due to the contributions by Caracas, Chávez, and Maduro toward the disarmament of Venezuelans. H.R. 127 is one of many steps that the American government is making towards leaving civilians defenseless to oppression.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.