In wake of three horrific mass shootings, demands for gun control legislation are intensifying. Supporters of the movement insist universal background checks, assault weapons ban, red flag laws, and other measures will reduce the odds for more atrocities like we witnessed over the weekend in El Paso and Dayton.
But while you might not know it from watching and reading mainstream media sources, there is another side of this debate. Second amendment groups like Gun Owners of America are pushing back vigorously across the board, starting with the push for the Senate to take up the House bill on universal background checks.
Gun Owners of America Legislative Counsel Mike Hammond says the House bill infringes far more on personal liberties than its supporters would have Americans believe.
“The legislation which the House passed is completely screwy. It’s a trap which could basically enmesh any gun owner,” said Hammond.
He says the most innocuous activity could make you a hardened criminal under the House bill.
“If you show your gun to your neighbor in your dining room and then go into the next room to go to the bathroom, you’re a felon. If you sell your gun to your kid for one dollar, you’re a felon. If you take someone shooting and the person doesn’t have a hunting license, you’re a felon.
“The bill has a whole lot of deliberate provisions in it to make if very, very difficult to own a firearm in America,” said Hammond.
President Trump has not indicated support for that particular bill but he has said in recent days that he is open to expanded background checks. Hammond says it’s hard to read Trump’s commitment to the second amendment moment to moment, but hopes the president will not go down that road.
“Depending on who’s in the room, he’s either pro or anti-second amendment. I hope that he holds firm because if he basically kisses off the second amendment community, I think he’s going to be a one-term president,” said Hammond.
Listen to the full podcast to learn what Hammond think about requiring a background check for every firearm purchase or proposed red flag laws which would allow guns to be removed from Americans reported as a danger to themselves or others. And we ask whether the Senate is likely to take up any of these issues.