As you know, this week Senator Feinstein released her gun control proposal (http://www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/assault-weapons). While I am confident that this particular bill is headed for certain failure, I wanted to ask you to be mindful of your constituents' 2nd Amendment rights in the weeks and months ahead.
With the horrible tragedy at Sandy Hook, many are taking the opportunity to blame inanimate objects for the crimes committed by a sociopath. There are a lot of emotional arguments for gun control, but the FACTS support allowing private citizens the means to defend themselves and those around them. FBI statistics show that murder is at its lowest rate since 1961 despite (or rather because of) an unprecedented number of guns in the hands of private citizens.
You know that Colorado is a Western state, and we celebrate our right to own and carry arms, even in heavily Democrat areas of the state. Any support for the kinds of gun control measures described in Senator Feinstein's proposal (in whatever form they ultimately make it to the Senate floor) will be remembered by the voters here in Colorado.
To be specific, any form of gun registration, any limitations on the way a weapon looks or how many rounds it can carry are unacceptable. Any restrictions on handguns or semi-automatic firearms are also unacceptable.
The 1994 so-called "assault weapon" ban did nothing to reduce violent crime. An almost identical law currently in effect in Connecticut did nothing to stop the Sandy Hook tragedy. Enforce current gun laws and expand gun rights for law-abiding citizens and our country will be a safer place (and indeed it statistically already is). Allow our rights to be curtailed, and beware the political fallout.
Jeff A. Odegard
Thank you for your continued support of the 2nd Amendment, which limits the ability of the Federal government to infringe upon our God-given right to own and carry arms. As you know, Senator Feinstein has released her proposal (http://www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/assault-weapons)for implementing draconian gun control measures in the country. While I am certain that this bill will never make it to the Senate floor, it shows us the Left's wish list for gutting and eventually eliminating our rights. The same path has been followed in nation after nation, from Nazi Germany to Great Britain.
I want to let you know that, as a conservative, there are some non-negotiable items when it comes to our firearms.
- Gun registration in any form is completely and utterly unacceptable. It is the first step before confiscation, which some on the left, like Governor Cuomo and others are beginning to publicly espouse.
- A ban on handguns (like Canada) is completely unacceptable. The handgun is the best concealable tool for self defense away from home, and entirely sufficient for defense in the home.
- A ban on so-called "assault weapons" is completely unacceptable. Without a Class 3 Firearms License, it is illegal to own a fully automatic weapon. The weapons they are trying to ban are, aside from "evil" black looks, functionally identical to the M-1 Garands used in WWII. Many of the listed features, like flash suppressors and barrel shrouds, are safety devices, and others, like collapsible stocks and pistol grips, make the weapon easier and therefore safer to handle.
- A ban on high-capacity magazines is not only unacceptable, but complete nonsense. If a person can't have a 30 round magazine, he will carry three 10 round magazines and learn to do magazine changes faster. If the magazines are designed to be non-removable (like in California), we will go back to WWII stripper clips for fast loading. Take it far enough, and we'll be like the mountain men in the early 1800s - we'll just have to carry more guns!
- A ban on specific firearms produced by specific manufacturers is unacceptable and creates an uneven playing field in a highly competitive portion of the economy. It punishes innovation and sound business practices, and will cost people jobs.
Please support legislation that supports the enforcement of current gun laws and the expansion of 2nd Amendment liberties by law-abiding citizens. Please fight the Left's gun control agenda with everything you have, and we will have your back.
Jeff A. Odegard