This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, January 20, 2016:
The history of due process reaches far back into history, farther than the Fourth Amendment's guarantees of citizens' rights to “be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures … [and that] no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” It goes back to Clause 39 of the Magna Carta:
(39) No free man shall be seized or imprisoned, or stripped of his rights or possessions, or outlawed or exiled, or deprived of his standing in any other way, nor will we proceed with force against him, or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgment of his equals or by the law of the land.
As just noted (see source below), Nicholas Kristof may be speaking for the establishment when he gave up the field to frontal attacks on the Second Amendment and instead offered a back-door “work-around”: ignoring due process as likely to be more effective in disarming the American people. In his editorial Kristof wrote:
More than 10 percent of murders in the United States, for example, are by intimate partners. The riskiest moment is often after a violent breakup when a woman has won a restraining order against her ex.
Prohibiting the subjects of those restraining orders from possessing a gun reduces these murders by 10 percent, one study found.
The eerie offering of a draft (LC 250) by an anti-gun politician in Oregon is just too coincidental to be accidental. Although the bill was offered “by committee,” it was drafted by anti-gun state senator Floyd Prozanski who has posted on his Facebook page a gratuitous photograph of a friendly handshake with the greatest gun salesman in American history, President obama.
The bill does that “end-run” around due process and the Fourth Amendment by providing that “a reporter … may make a report to the Department of State Police Firearms Unit that a person is experiencing a mental health emergency and poses a danger to self or others with a firearm….”
The bill defines “a reporter” as a physician, a health care provider, a licensed mental health professional, an educator or principal or a school staff member who has had direct contact with the person, the person's employer, or a family member of the person. Once the report has been received the bill directs that “the department shall ensure that a firearms purchase hold record is created that prevents the person [from] purchas[ing] a firearm for a period of 30 days….”
Further, the person so accused may not be told that he no longer has his Second Amendment rights by the department, nor the name of the person making the accusation. In addition, the person making the report “is immune from civil liability for making the report as long as the report is made in good faith.”
In an alert to its members about this attempted overreach, the Oregon Firearms Foundation (OFF) explained:
This bill will allow totally unqualified people to make anonymous accusations against others and claim those people are experiencing “mental health emergencies.” Those people lose their rights to buy a firearm.
Those accusations will not be investigated, the accused will not know the accusation has been made unless [he tries] to buy a gun nor will [he] be allowed to know who [his] accuser is or how long [his] rights will be suspended.
If the [accused] choose[s] to challenge the accusation, [he] assume[s] the full burden of proving they are not mentally ill [along with] all the expense.
The OFF went so far as to offer a possible, perhaps even likely, unintended consequence if the bill were to become law. The bill, if passed, could disarm a woman who just obtained a restraining order against her ex-husband. He could make a phone call or send an email to the department expressing the opinion that his ex was loony and that the gun she just bought to defend herself against him was now a danger to herself. Officials from the department arrive at her place of residence and disarm her. Now disarmed, she is a perfect target by her estranged husband.
Not only is the proposed Oregon ordinance unconstitutional, it is a bludgeon to any reasonable conversation about the issue of mental health. To anti-gun politicians, who wield the hammer, everything looks like a nail, even mental health.
A reasonable approach to the issue is provided by a lengthy, carefully crafted response by Matt Millican, a Certified Mental Health Professional with an MA degree in Counseling Psychology, who wrote in his blog, Mental Health Reflections:
We tend to over-simplify the issue of mental health in our society, not realizing just how broad and complex it can be….
We are being told that mental illnesses are to blame for the tragedies of our world – that we can test for, find, and fix mental illness, keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill, and give mental health exams to gun owners – THEN we will be safe and all will be well.
Not only it this not true, it is impossible….
In the end, issues of violence and criminal behavior don't start overnight, nor will they be solved overnight by background checks, mental health assessments, or simply removing the objects used to harm.
It is increasingly obvious to supporters of the Second Amendment that the war against it is devious, cunning, and persistent. As Thomas Jefferson wisely said so many years ago, “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.”
Oathkeepers: ‘Most Dangerous' Oregon Gun Bill Creates New Threat to Freedom
Does Nicholas Kristof speak for the Establishment?
OregonFirearms.org: Maybe The Most Dangerous Bill Ever
Matt Millican: Mental Health and Gun Violence: A Multitude of Myths and Misconceptions
OregonFirearms.org: UPDATE ON THE MOST DANGEROUS BILL Jan 14, 2016
OregonFirearms.org: Prozanksi's Secret Accuser Bill Formally Introduced
Matt Millican's Linkedin profile