By: Teresa Mull
President Trump’s Commission on School Safety just released a report with recommendations for “how to address school safety and violence.” Seizing guns is among the commission’s suggestions.
The report says:
The Commission endorses Extreme Risk Protection Order laws, which give authorities a temporary way to keep those who threaten society from possessing or purchasing firearms.
Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs), also known as “Red Flag Gun Confiscation” laws, have taken effect in some states already. Gun owners across the country are having their guns seized by law enforcement, as Dudley Brown, president of the National Association for Gun Rights put it, “simply on the pretense of a ‘tip’ from someone you may not even know.”Fox News reported in July more than 450 Florida residents had been ordered to give up their guns under the new law. In Jacksonville, one gun owner has already had 23 guns seized, and ten ERPO cases are pending. In New Jersey earlier this year, “police invaded a veteran’s home on the basis of something a child overheard at school and attempted to confiscate his guns without a warrant. One county in Washington State just announced officers seized 466 guns in 2018 alone.
The White House School Safety Commission’s report will be released this week, and it will include calls for such confiscatory laws. On December 18, 2018, Breitbart News quoted Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’s preview of the report, saying, “Our report endorses states adoption of extreme risk protection orders, which temporarily restrict access to firearms to individuals found to be a danger to themselves or others.”
DeVos stressed that the White House wants the confiscatory orders structured in a way that is “cognizant of due process protections and respectful of Second Amendment liberties.”
Four Scary Facts
Gunpowder Magazine has repeatedly sounded the alarm on red flag laws, and reminds its readers of these four scary facts regarding ERPOs:
Law-abiding gun owners are guilty until proven innocent under ERPOs.
These bills open the floodgates for vindictive family members, friends, or John Q. Public to accuse you of almost anything as justification to take your firearms. They can take these accusations to court, even though you’ve never been charged with or convicted of a crime. At that point, you are on defense to try to convince the judge why you should be able to keep your guns and your Second Amendment rights
ERPOs open up a Pandora’s Box of ways for cunning lawyers and conniving family members to exploit gun owners.
Red flag ERPO bills have been written so broadly on two fronts that in some instances, people are given near-endless possibilities by which to use the legal system to persecute gun owners. The list of what violations you can be reported for is all over the place. If you made a comment to someone or seemed depressed, virtually raising any type of “mental health” red flag could end with you battling for your Second Amendment rights in court.
The timeframe for confiscation can go on for months.
ERPOs can last for weeks, months, or up to a year in cases where a gun owner would have to appear for repeated court hearings to try to win back his or her Constitutional rights. In some instances, the government would hold onto your guns for you; other bills have a neutral third party holding onto your guns.
Both political parties are supporting ERPOs.
Many would have you believe that Democrats are leading the charge for gun control in the wake of the horrific schools shootings of 2018. But nothing could be further from the truth. Republicans are leading efforts as well.
Teresa Mull is editor of Gunpowder Magazine. Contact her at email@example.com.