A few days ago, several media sources started to report that our veterans are receiving letters which deprive them of their second amendment rights. I am rarely, if ever, the first to a story. This is the nature of being a “small potatoes” blogger. By time it gets to me the best thing I can do is develop it and fill in the blanks that the original sources omitted in their haste to be first. Sometimes the details are worse than the original story and I believe this is one of those cases. It really just depends on how deep you want to dig.
Yet again the American public is caught by surprise despite being warned that this was coming. I think there is a natural assumption, due to the mention of “The Brady Act” that this was put in place years ago and this is simply a new interpretation. This is not the case. Let’s go back to December 3, 2012 to find the only evidence I can see of a senator trying to stop this from happening. By the way, by my findings, the only big media sources to report this side of the story were Fox News and The Huffington Post. This is how they sneak these things through.
Here’s your warning shot:
“WASHINGTON — Should veterans deemed too mentally incompetent to handle their own financial affairs be prevented from buying a gun?
The issue, for a time last week, threatened to become the biggest sticking point in a $631 billion defense bill for reshaping a military that is disengaging from a decade of warfare.
Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., sought to amend the bill to stop the Veterans Affairs Department from putting the names of veterans deemed too mentally incompetent to handle their finances into the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, which prohibits them from buying or owning firearms.
Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., objected, saying the measure would make it easier for veterans with mental illness to own a gun, endangering themselves and others.
‘I love our veterans, I vote for them all the time. They defend us,’ Schumer said. ‘If you are a veteran or not and you have been judged to be mentally infirm, you should not have a gun.’” Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/03/veterans-gun-rights-defense-bill_n_2230786.html
The next day the senate passed the 631 Billion Dollar Defense Bill by a margin of 98-0 and the Bill was not amended in favor of veteran’s gun rights. Coburn has promised to try to again, with future bills, to get this amended. We shall see. If the man did not cast a vote against the bill, I have to wonder what kind of priority it really is for him.
I think the fact that the “Brady Act” is being mentioned in these letters to our veterans, is an intentional ploy to mislead the public. This is not about something that happened in 1993, this is about something that Obama signed into law in January 2013. I think we need to see our current legislators for what they are. There was not one single “Nay” vote on this measure in the Senate.
OK now, let’s go back to the letter than is being sent, because I am sure that some missed it. The story originally broke with Michael Connelly, J.D., at Red Flag News:
“How would you feel if you received a letter from the U.S. Government informing you that because of a physical or mental condition that the government says you have it is proposing to rule that you are incompetent to handle your own financial affairs? Suppose that letter also stated that the government is going to appoint a stranger to handle your affairs for you at your expense? That would certainly be scary enough but it gets worse.
What if that letter also stated: ‘A determination of incompetency will prohibit you from purchasing, possessing, receiving, or transporting a firearm or ammunition. If you knowingly violate any of these prohibitions, you may be fined, imprisoned, or both pursuant to the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, Pub.L.No. 103-159, as implemented at 18, United States Code 924(a)(2).’?” Source: http://redflagnews.com/headlines/disarming-americas-heros-veterans-receiving-official-letters-prohibiting-them-from-purchasing-possessing-receiving-or-transporting-a-firearm-or-ammunition
So we know that the letters are being sent and we know what triggered them. What other blanks need to be filled in? For one, I think people deserve to know how many of these letters are going out, because it is not a small number.
“Across the United States, approximately 122,271 veterans have been judged “incompetent” to manage their funds. Their $3.3 billion in assets are handled by VA-selected fiduciaries: family, friends or strangers screened by the government, according to information the VA provided to the Chronicle.” Source: http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Family-seek-answers-for-veteran-s-missing-money-2499200.php
This particular story is a year old but 122,000 veterans is not an insignificant number. Does anyone really believe it will stop there? Now that they have a way to take gun rights from our veterans you need to look at the other pieces that seem to be falling into place, relating to this story.
First we need to look at what the Brady Handgun Violence Protection act is. It only covers guns sold by legal firearms dealers that require background checks. So the current push through the legislature, that looks like it will succeed, to require universal background checks on private sales will effectively take all possibility of these 122,000+ veterans ever legally purchasing a firearm again. We are not talking about “assault” weapons and handguns only. These men and women can’t even go deer hunting.
This is just the tip of the iceberg. Once legislation is in place what is stopping that 122,000 number from growing? All we have to do is look at CNN, the federal government’s propaganda arm, to see where this may be leading:
Of the total, 32,010 (31 percent) were diagnosed with mental health and/or psychosocial problems, including 25,658 who received mental health diagnoses. More than half (56 percent) were diagnosed with two or more disorders.
Post-traumatic stress disorder was the most common disorder, with the 13,205 veterans who got the diagnosis accounting for more than half (52 percent) of mental health diagnoses.” Source: http://articles.cnn.com/2007-03-13/us/stress.troops_1_substance-abuse-disorder-mental-health-anxiety-disorder?_s=PM:US
The fear here is obvious… Now that they have legal provisions in place, what is stopping our government from declaring more and more veterans as “mentally incapable” of handling their own affairs? Nothing.
122,000 is not an insignificant number but I expect that number to grow exponentially. Studies are in place that could literally “prove” that nearly 1/3 of all of our veterans are mentally incompetent. As of 2011 census numbers there were 21.5 million American Veterans. 31% of that number is about 7 million. 122,000 veterans is a “trial run” my friends. If we don’t get very loud in defense of the second amendment they will begin to go after others as well. This is how it is done, piece by piece and systematically.
Keep in mind that this is being done without due process. These men and women are not getting a day in court to separate them from their second amendment rights. And, for anyone who wants to actually read the Brady Act, there is protection for those who are making these judgements. They can not be prosecuted or punished for mistakes in relation to this process. You have to love our lawmakers. They always protect government interests.
We must get to the bottom of this and we can not do that without looking at both sides of the debate. Are these veterans really a danger to our society, or is this more about other things?
“Many times, across this last decade of war, law enforcement leaders and trainers, politicians, business leaders, and media reporters have asked me, with great and sincere concern, about our returning veterans and their potential for violent interaction with police. They are worried about the ‘whacko veteran’ coming home and committing violent crimes. Is this a legitimate concern? Just how much should we worry about this possibility?
I heard a National Public Radio piece a few months ago, saying that, ‘Over a hundred veterans have come home and committed murder!’ Think about that for a minute… We’ve had over 2 million Americans in the war zone, and are currently in our 10th year of war. The Federal Bureau of Justice Statistics tells us that the homicide rate for Americans between ages 18-25 is around 25-per-100,000. (http://bjs. ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/tables/ oagetab.cfm) So, out of any million Americans in that age group, there should be around 250 murders per year. Out of 2 million, there should have been 500 murders. Extrapolate that back across 10 years of war, and there should have been, statistically speaking, thousands of murders by this population group. All they ‘proved’ is that the murder rate for our vets is less than a tenth of that for other citizens of the same age! (Which is pretty much keeps with the stats from our past wars.)” -Lt.Col. Dave Grossman Source: http://www.recoverytoday.net/2011/55-august/350-the-myth-of-our-returning-veterans-and-violent-crime
What we have is a serious case of profiling. What if the government stated that African-American men were no longer allowed to own guns? Is that an absurd example. Yes and no. The point is that you could find statistics to back up a move like this but that doesn’t make the move right. The second amendment says “Shall Not Be Infringed” for a reason. Racial profiling is not acceptable in this country, but certain types of profiling are.
Thomas Jefferson talked about preferring “dangerous freedom” and this is exactly the type of thing he was talking about. Will guns end up in the hands of some of the wrong people? Yes they will. But that’s part of the price of dangerous freedom. These veterans are not convicted felons who have given us reason to believe that they will go on uncontrolled shooting sprees. These are men and women who have come back from war, with a series of mental defects that they only incurred because of their defense of our freedoms. This is the ultimate slap in the face of American heroes and I don’t like it one bit.
We send them off to the hell that is war and when they get back we take away their most basic rights as Americans. The right to bear arms “Shall Not Be Infringed.” Period.
I believe this is more about taking the guns from those who know how to use them, and are not hesitant to kill another human being if that becomes necessary. The government is scared. They know that revolution is in the air. Why wouldn’t they disarm veterans? Do you really believe they will stop with 122,000? Veterans are the group that they fear the most. These are men and women who have been trained and proven in battle. These are the men and women who could genuinely make a difference in any future revolution.
I can’t help but think of the timing of Chris Kyle’s death and wonder what a “coincidence” it is that this man was murdered shortly before this controversy hit. If there is any high-profile figure that would have stood up for veterans now, it would have been Chris Kyle.
Kyle’s idea of therapy for a PTSD victim was to take them deer hunting. It seems that our legislators, both democrats and republicans, definitely disagree with that.
Where does this leave us? I think we need to go back to the words of Senator Tom Coburn who is quoted as saying, “All I am saying is, let them at least have their day in court if you are going to take away a fundamental right given under the Constitution.”
Senator, I would feel much better about your argument if I were reporting today that this measure passed the senate by a vote of 97-1. We must start electing people with backbones who are not afraid to stop dangerous legislation.
We must start to raise our voices against pieces of legislation that attempt to incorporate nonsensical measures like this one. This is what our lawmaking process has become.
Wake up America. They will find a way to get your guns and you must not remain silent.
This is simply not acceptable.