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New Hampshire bill aims to prevent Katrina-style gun seizures

Discussion in 'Legal' started by DadaOrwell2, Jan 3, 2006.

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  1. DadaOrwell2

    DadaOrwell2 Member

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    January 2, 2006
    Concord, N.H.

    Concerned by perceived abuses of Federal power during the Katrina crisis, New Hampshire state reps are reviewing a bill which would criminalize certain weapons seizures - even if the perpetrators are Federal officers. House Bill 1639-FN, prohibits the confiscation of lawfully owned and lawfully carried firearms during a state of emergency, making a felon of any law enforcement officer who attempts to seize such a firearm during a disaster.

    The bill was sponsored by Rep. Paul Hopfgarten at the request of local Free Staters - members of a group trying to recruit freedom lovers to New Hampshire and turn it an even more libertarian state than it already is (www.freestateproject.org).

    The bill reads: "Any law enforcement officer, person acting as a law enforcement officer, or other public official who confiscates or attempts to confiscate lawfully carried or lawfully owned firearms in this state during a declared state of emergency
    shall be charged with a class A felony."

    In the chaos following Hurricane Katrina, various government agencies - including Federal Marshalls - made systematic
    attempts to sweep New Orleans of guns - even if that meant entering the homes of law abiding gun owners. The move did not cause widespread outrage in most states. But New Hampshire residents reacted by burning a FEMA flag in front of a local Federal building. They also circulated a petition pledging resistance if such a move were ever attempted in the "Live Free or Die" state....a place where guns are part of the culture and gun laws are the second-loosest in the nation.

    Activists say whether it passes or not, this "Gun Protection Bill" is one more small thing they can do to try and protect themselves from disarmament at the hands of any government, during a time when they believe they will need their weapons most.

    Bill text: http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/legislation/2006/hb1639.html
    Media coverage of FEMA flag burn:
    http://www.cmonitor.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20050922/REPOSITORY/509220363/1001/NEWS01
     
  2. Marnoot

    Marnoot Member

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    I like the bill better with my editing. Why limit protection for law-abiding gun-owners to only times of crisis?:confused:
     
  3. antsi

    antsi Member

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    I like the sentiment here, but don't see the utility.
    If RKBA being incorporated into the freaking Constitution didn't stop them in NO, how is adding another law on the books going to stop them next time? If they can ignore one law, they can ignore two.
     
  4. Devonai

    Devonai Member

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    It's better than closing the barn door after the horse is gone. It also makes my life as a guardsman easier as it helps clarify what might be an unlawful order. It's better than having to say, "Sir, I cannot follow that order."
     
  5. beerslurpy

    beerslurpy member

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    Saying you cant do it is great. Saying "you may lose your job if you do it" is somewhat better. And saying "we will put you in jail if you do it" is even better.

    Ironically, since the act of seizure would be a felony, I beleive the exceptions to self defense that typically apply to LEOs are moot in such a case. This almost takes us back to the late 18th century.

    If only such laws didnt require states of emergency to be activated.
     
  6. Manedwolf

    Manedwolf member

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    I love my state. :D SOME Americans still aren't asleep.
     
  7. Lupinus

    Lupinus Member

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    I love it....why the heck do they need to be in such cold climates, they should migrate south :D

    Because it puts a law on the books saying that something will happen if you do. The 2ndA jsut says you have the right, doesn't say what will happen if a goverment official violates it. This does.
     
  8. Manedwolf

    Manedwolf member

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    Eh, it's not that cold. 40's, 30's most of the winter, a few colder days with windchill, but it's not "step outside without three coats and die" cold like places like Minnesota.
     
  9. yucaipa

    yucaipa Member

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    It will be interesting to see what arguments the ban the the gun bunch put forward on this.

    They are going to have to really twist and turn to keep themselves on the "were are for reasonable/common sense laws" road.
     
  10. georgeduz

    georgeduz Member

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    i wish these free staters would come and live on nj,we need them here.
     
  11. DadaOrwell2

    DadaOrwell2 Member

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    Dev, Maned...

    thanks for the kind words.

    Maned if you want to join the "unasleep" in your midst inside NH, consider yourself invited to NHfree.com where we do something every week to enhance freedom including gun freedom. We also run the state's most active web forum there...but it's the action that counts.

    Dev I hope you will consider moving up here and getting active yourself in our fight for freedom.
     
  12. Hawkmoon

    Hawkmoon Member

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    10-4

    The problem with having a UCMJ saying military personnel are required to not obey unlawful orders is ... to know when an order is unlawful. Vague references to the Constitution are nice, but a law on the books saying "This is wrong, even if you're wearing a uniform" should eliminate a lot of questions.

    Unfortunately, the way it is worded probably won't mean much. There is no penalty specified, nor is there any requirement for arrest. Maybe NH laws are written differently, but most state laws I've looked at state that he who does ___ shall be "guilty" of a Class __ felony, not "shall be charged with."
     
  13. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    I believe Florida is considering a similar law. Every state should have one.

    Actually, on second thought, let me rephrase that: no state should ever need one.
     
  14. DadaOrwell2

    DadaOrwell2 Member

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    Instead of dragging all of us down to you, just drag yerself up here!
     
  15. RavenVT100

    RavenVT100 Member

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    New Hampshirites:

    NH is on my list of states to relocate to in order to get away from urban sprawl. However, the influx of MA residents that summer in NH and eventually move to NH concerns me, particularly in light of the different political philosophies that the two states have.

    What are your thoughts on how this will progress? Many people have told me that they feel that MA politics will eventually take over NH, and NH will simply become an extension of MA politically.
     
  16. DadaOrwell2

    DadaOrwell2 Member

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    They've been saying that for so long, but it's never really happened. Mass. residents are the source of liberty here, not the enemy of it. They are more conservative than the natives; kind of like Lithuanians fleeing the Soviet Union.

    The Union Leader did a research article on this after the 2004 election and determined that NH residents who came here from mass. voted decisevely for Bush, NH natives didn't. Bush isn't great I admit but people who voted for him are generally more liberty oriented than Kerry voters. So the influx works to our advantage from a liberty standpoint. NH is threatened more by the internal government school system than outsiders. And that threat, I do agree, is substantial...just as it is in every state.
     
  17. gt3944

    gt3944 Member

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    More power to them...I'm from louisiana and I moved to Georgia because of Katrina..trust me I was not gonna go back there without my gun at hand...they had thugs robbing people, thugs shooting people, thugs impersonating FEMA officials robbing and raping people....I was there the first two weeks after the storm and Im glad these so called officers didnt try to take my sidearm..funny part is the cops at the checkpoints kept making sure that I had my gun with me before going back to the city...
     
  18. BostonGeorge

    BostonGeorge Member

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    I think that most MA transplants agree with NH's politics rather than want to change them. I know I moved for the greater liberties and I would assume any crazy MA liberals would just stay where they are.
     
  19. DadaOrwell2

    DadaOrwell2 Member

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  20. publius

    publius Member

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    We are? Cool! I've gotta pay more attention. My State Rep is very good, but no doubt others could use some prodding.
     
  21. Capital Punishment

    Capital Punishment Member

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    Wow, i need to move to New Hampshire. :)


    When the newspaper mentioned that they have the second loosest gun laws, they should of also mentioned New Hampshires (non-existant) crime rate. :neener:
     
  22. Manedwolf

    Manedwolf member

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    Yeah. The last "violent crime" I know of, and only one for a while, in Manchester, a decently-sized and ethnically and economically varied city, was some heroin-head whacking on the door of a closed convenience store in a bad area...with a baseball bat. And they ran away.

    They also think the heroin came in through MA.
     
  23. Devonai

    Devonai Member

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    My parents are moving from Maine to Manchester. I simply recommended they avoid certain neighborhoods (and the Red Oak real estate company).

    Sometimes disadvantaged youths shoot each other, but I'd bet the only largest city that has a lower occurance of this is in Vermont. Even still, it's almost always in the same neighborhood of Manchester. Interesting that this neighborhood is just a few blocks from the police station.
     
  24. DadaOrwell2

    DadaOrwell2 Member

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  25. DadaOrwell2

    DadaOrwell2 Member

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    Some updates on this:

    In the "reality check" column I should point out that I think only about 5 or 10% of bills submitted in New Hampshire become law (which is a good thing). So in the natural scheme of things it would not be likely they would pass any law, not even this one.

    I was at the committee hearing last month where this bill came up for public discussion and citizens just packed the room to speak in favor of it, in testimony supporters outnumbered opponents 10 to 1. Virtually no one spoke against it except two of the reps on the committee, which is unfortunately dominated by cops and chiefs.

    But we are doing what we can with what we have; a good bill like this always draws publicity and draws attention to the problem. If that is all we get then it's easily worth it.
     
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