House votes to limit DC gun ban


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Waitone
June 30, 2005, 06:06 PM
http://www.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=politicsNews&storyID=8946084

By David Lawder

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives dealt a blow to Washington, D.C.'s strict gun control law on Thursday when it passed an amendment that would effectively allow fully assembled rifles and pre-1976 handguns to be kept in city homes.

The amendment to an appropriations bill for federal subsidies for the District of Columbia prohibits the funds from being used to enforce certain sections of the city's 29-year-old gun control law.

Passed by a vote of 259-161, the measure submitted by Indiana Republican Rep. Mark Souder does not go as far as his recently introduced legislation to revoke Washington's 1976 ban on handguns and semiautomatic weapons, but it indicates continuing strong House support for such a measure.

The House voted by a similar margin last year to revoke the capital's handgun ban, but the measure went nowhere because the Senate failed to act.

A new hand gun repeal bill in the Senate, sponsored by Texas Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, may gain more support this year, but its success is far from certain.

The House vote came just two days after Mayor Anthony Williams told a House committee the Souder bill was "a slap in the face to me and the people who live in this city."

City officials argue that Washington, with its chronically high murder rate, will see gun crime rise further if guns are allowed to be freely sold and kept in the city.

Currently, rifles and shotguns and handguns registered before the 1976 ban may be kept in District homes only if they are unloaded, disassembled and stored in a locked cabinet.

Souder argued that this makes them useless for self-defense and his amendment prohibits the city from enforcing this law with federal funds.

His bill would roll back the handgun ban and registration requirements for ammunition and would decriminalize possession of unregistered weapons. Similar legislation has been proposed by Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas.

"I believe the constitutional right to bear arms supersedes local authority," Souder said in favor of his amendment.

Opponents argued unsuccessfully that constitutional provisions for home rule should prevail. Rep. Tom Davis, a Republican from northern Virginia who is often supportive of D.C. policies, said he agreed with the right to bear arms, but "it really goes to respecting the rights of the District of Columbia to make their laws."

"Once we start doing everything out of Washington, it may be on your side tomorrow," Davis said.

Reuters 2005. All Rights Reserved.

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odysseus
June 30, 2005, 06:08 PM
pre-1976 handguns

hahaha... what is the logic in that one?

BTW - that's better news. Perhaps the crime rate will go down now. But it doesn't go near enough and is still an abridgment of 2A rights.

dasmi
June 30, 2005, 06:09 PM
There are a lot of nice pre-1976 handguns. Unfortunately, most people who don't yet own a gun, and only want one for self defense, aren't likely to have the patience and knowledge to find a nice one.
"I believe the constitutional right to bear arms supersedes local authority," Souder said in favor of his amendment.
Damn straight. But will you defend me if I ever get caught for carrying illegally in California?
Not that I am, just a hypothetical.

Standing Wolf
June 30, 2005, 08:23 PM
...an amendment that would effectively allow fully assembled rifles and pre-1976 handguns to be kept in city homes.

Wow. What courage.

carebear
June 30, 2005, 11:04 PM
If I'm reading it right, it isn't some kind of pseudo C&R provision.

handguns registered before the 1976 ban

So, if you happen to have hung on to your registered handgun this long, (and the bill passes the Senate) you could store it assembled, loaded and not in a locked cabinet.

iiibdsiil
June 30, 2005, 11:28 PM
You would think with crime rates there they would try alllowing guns, especially seeing as how the places that have the highest gun restrictions have the highest crime rates. What a joke.

Crosshair
July 1, 2005, 12:45 AM
Well, ya got to start somewhere, Yes still a violation of 2A, but we need to get the stone rolling.

nico
July 1, 2005, 12:49 AM
The thing to remember is freedom is a slippery slope. Once people have a little, they (hopefully) start demanding more and more. :)

peacefuljeffrey
July 1, 2005, 01:26 AM
You would think with crime rates there they would try alllowing guns, especially seeing as how the places that have the highest gun restrictions have the highest crime rates. What a joke.

Well, y'see, to these idiots, they aren't able to see a failure of gun control to control crime; what they instead think has happened is that gun control didn't fail -- it would have worked fine as long as it was in uniform effect in every other jurisdiction in the world, so that guns could not be "trafficked into" their lovely burgh from elsewhere.

So they blame the "lax gun laws" in Virginia and elsewhere, instead of the culture of victimization that they have bred in D.C. through their inane blame-the-object laws.

As long as there is ONE PLACE ON EARTH from which guns could "flow" into D.C., they will not admit that D.C.'s gun laws are a failure at controlling violent crime.
They will always have the excuse that gun control would work if all the other avenues for guns to arrive from were cut off.


-Jeffrey

peacefuljeffrey
July 1, 2005, 01:31 AM
I think this push to re-arm D.C. started because some congresspeople got fed up with the fact that it's illegal for them to own/carry guns in the city limits.

What surprises me is that they are trying to restore the general public's right to guns, rather than making some special law that would empower congresspeople alone to carry in D.C. (You know, like the way judges get special dispensation along those lines.)

-Jeffrey

beerslurpy
July 1, 2005, 01:36 AM
Its a step in the right direction.

It would be awesome if crime dropped drastically right after guns became legal in DC again.

peacefuljeffrey
July 1, 2005, 01:42 AM
Slurpy, why?

When it did that in all the states that passed shall-issue CCW, antis didn't admit they were wrong. They didn't suddenly start admitting in the good and utility of citizens being armed.

Why would it be different if it happened in D.C.? They didn't consider that gun control may have been what started their crime rate rising, did they?

We are dealing with utter intellectual bankruptcy and intransigence. Nothing will change.


-Jeffrey

Henry Bowman
July 1, 2005, 08:33 AM
Peacefuljourney, the benefit of having statistical crime drop evidence is not in convencing the antis, but the fence sitters and the ambivalent -- those who are not anti, but who don't otherwise think that it affects them either way.

nico
July 1, 2005, 08:40 AM
Peacefuljourney, the benefit of having statistical crime drop evidence is not in convencing the antis, but the fence sitters and the ambivalent -- those who are not anti, but who don't otherwise think that it affects them either way.
and the people who don't know any better and have been fed the antis' BS for their entire lives. Someone whose been stuck in the bad part (which is most) of DC all their life and has become accustomed to violent crime all around them may very well have a change of start if/when they see their neighbors buying guns and successfully protecting themselves.

TarpleyG
July 1, 2005, 08:41 AM
1976 was 29 years ago--as long as the ban has been in effect. Stupid reasoning. Typical arbitrary thinking by our rulers. A handgun is a handgun. Screw 'em. I'd get by just fine with 29 year old guns, no problem.

Greg

Waitone
July 1, 2005, 08:41 AM
Don't look at DC for statistics. Look at what happens in Detroit.

nico
July 1, 2005, 08:46 AM
1976 was 29 years ago--as long as the ban has been in effect. Stupid reasoning. Typical arbitrary thinking by our rulers. A handgun is a handgun. Screw 'em. I'd get by just fine with 29 year old guns, no problem.
the thing is that doesn't allow you to keep the gun loaded, etc. Guns less than 29 years old are completely illegal in DC. Guns more than 29 years old are ok as long as they're disassembled, have a lock, and are in a locked cabinet. Neither one is useful.

cuchulainn
July 1, 2005, 08:49 AM
Well, y'see, to these idiots, they aren't able to see a failure of gun control to control crime I recall a political cartoon about 10 - 15 years ago. It had two nearly-identical panels with a guy labeled something like "gun control advocate." He was reading a newspaper. The only difference:

Panel 1: The newspaper's headline read "Gun Crime Falls after Gun Law" The anti-gunner declared, "A-ha! We need more gun laws!"

Panel 2: The newspaper's headline read "Gun Crime Rises despite Gun Law!" The anti-gunner declared, "A-ha! We need more gun laws!"

nico
July 1, 2005, 08:51 AM
^^ it's sad that that's so accurate. As long as there's crime in this country and some guns are legal somewhere, they'll whine that there aren't enough gun laws. If we don't stick to our guns (literally and figuratively), "sensible gun laws" might someday ban anything more powerful than a pellet rifle. And then they'll go after those. . .

Igloodude
July 1, 2005, 09:06 AM
In case anyone isn't clear,

Currently, rifles and shotguns and handguns registered before the 1976 ban may be kept in District homes only if they are unloaded, disassembled and stored in a locked cabinet.

Your vintage WW2 1911 is still outright illegal in DC unless it was registered in DC prior to 1976. Thus, this amendment wouldn't really free up anyone in DC to get or keep a pistol that didn't have it in 1976, congresscritter or no. Which means that pretty much anyone under the age of 48 or so is automatically disarmed, and how many older people would have kept an operational-but-disassembled pistol for 30 years? The amendment is merely testing the waters, it will probably apply to about 7 people in the District of Columbia.

K-Romulus
July 1, 2005, 09:33 AM
The "pre-1976" statement actually refers to handguns being legal to have in DC as long as you (1) were a resident of DC at that time and (2) you registered the handgun with the DC government before a specific deadline date in the year 1976.

I believe this is similar to the CA-AWB's registration "grandfathering" scheme.

Interesting to note that the total gun registration scheme was enacted as soon as DC got "home rule" authority in the mid-to-early 1970's. The very next year (or maybe two years later?) the DC government then decreed that no new ordinary citizen's handgun registrations would be accepted after the 1976 cut-off date.

That's the DC "handgun ban" - not a "ban" per se, just "reasonable regulations." :fire:

Another interesting note is that the DC gun laws are filed under the "health care and safety" laws, and NOT under the criminal laws:

(from http://dccode.westgroup.com/home/dccodes/default.wl )

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA OFFICIAL CODE 2001 EDITION
DIVISION I. GOVERNMENT OF DISTRICT.
TITLE 7. HUMAN HEALTH CARE AND SAFETY.
SUBTITLE J. PUBLIC SAFETY.
CHAPTER 25. FIREARMS CONTROL.
UNIT A. FIREARMS CONTROL REGULATIONS.
SUBCHAPTER II. FIREARMS AND DESTRUCTIVE DEVICES.
7-2502.02. Registration of certain firearms prohibited.

(a) A registration certificate shall not be issued for a:

(1) Sawed-off shotgun;

(2) Machine gun (K-Rom: defined in 7-2501.01 as "any firearm which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily converted or restored to shoot: (a) Automatically, more than 1 shot by a single function of the trigger;(b)Semiautomatically, more than 12 shots without manual reloading" :rolleyes: );

(3) Short-barreled rifle; or

(4) Pistol not validly registered to the current registrant in the District prior to September 24, 1976, except that the provisions of this section shall not apply to any organization that employs at least 1 commissioned special police officer or other employee licensed to carry a firearm and that arms the employee with a firearm during the employee's duty hours or to a police officer who has retired from the Metropolitan Police Department.

(b) Nothing in this section shall prevent a police officer who has retired from the Metropolitan Police Department from registering a pistol.

Lone_Gunman
July 1, 2005, 10:45 AM
The best the Republican-controlled House can do is put together a bill that allows pre-1976 handguns???

Am I supposed to be impressed?

I am sure the Republican lap dogs who frequent this forum will be along soon to explain to me why this is the best they could do.

wdlsguy
July 1, 2005, 12:25 PM
DC ST 7-2501.01

Formerly cited as DC ST 1981 6-2302

TEXT
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA OFFICIAL CODE 2001 EDITION
DIVISION I. GOVERNMENT OF DISTRICT.
TITLE 7. HUMAN HEALTH CARE AND SAFETY.
SUBTITLE J. PUBLIC SAFETY.
CHAPTER 25. FIREARMS CONTROL.
UNIT A. FIREARMS CONTROL REGULATIONS.
SUBCHAPTER I. GENERAL PROVISIONS.
7-2501.01. Definitions.

As used in this unit the term:
...
(10) "Machine gun" means any firearm which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily converted or restored to shoot:
(A) Automatically, more than 1 shot by a single function of the trigger;
(B) Semiautomatically, more than 12 shots without manual reloading.
...
(15) "Sawed-off shotgun" means a shotgun having a barrel of less than 20 inches in length; or a firearm made from a shotgun if such firearm as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches or any barrel of less than 20 inches in length.
...

RealGun
July 1, 2005, 12:40 PM
I am sure the Republican lap dogs who frequent this forum will be along soon to explain to me why this is the best they could do.

Don't get too lathered. The Senate won't likely include it and it will then be dropped in conference. It is not comprehensive enough to really matter anyway. What we want is to be able to pack in DC. The court case challenging the ban as unconstitutional is the better way to go. That could translate nicely to other major cities.

thorn726
July 1, 2005, 03:46 PM
weow i didnt realizze just how tight the law was there-
and SENSELESS.

so you cna have a gun in your home but you cant use it to defend your home???

how does that stop a single crime????????????????????????????????????

nice logic

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