Sunday, April 12, 2009

Busy Week for Oregon Firearm Legislation

The Oregon Firearms Federation has published an announcement detailing several upcoming hearings, bills, and other activities directly relating to our Second Amendment rights in Oregon. The next week will prove to be pivotal as many key pieces of legislation are scheduled to be heard as well as oral arguments in a key court case.

The ball gets rolling on Monday April 13th with oral arguments in the case of Medford Teacher Shirley Katz. In November a judge ruled that teachers do not have right to carry, even with a concealed carry permit, if a school district has a policy against it. This ruling seems to fly in the face of state law, so the decision was appealed. The hearing will take place at 9AM at the University of Oregon School of Law. Hopefully this case will successfully appeal the heinous decision by the lower court. Our schools and universities represent ripe target zones for any maniac or terrorist to “make a statement” as they know full well that they represent a target with high emotional impact and no ability to defend themselves.

Also on the 13th, Oregon State University is hosting a “Second Amendment Week.” According to OFF, they “have been reliably informed that the school administration is so nervous, they have requested State Police in riot gear. No, we are NOT making this up.” Make no mistake, the Second Amendment is going to become the Civil Rights battle of the next decade. It is abundantly clear that many in power fear the Second Amendment, and those who want it preserved will face hurdles that other groups fighting for their Civil Rights in the past have faced. That apparently includes police in full riot gear.

On Tuesday April 14th, House Bill 2364 is scheduled to be heard in the House Judiciary Committee. This bill allows concealed carry reciprocity for all states with a concealed carry permit law, as well as for the two states that don’t require permits to carry concealed. According to OFF, “Democrats on the committee had a collective fit and the bill was returned to committee to be reconsidered.” There may or may not be an updated version of the bill available before discussion begins, and the current version of the bill may be heavily amended from its previous incarnation.

On Wednesday April 15th pivotal House Bill 2727 is scheduled to be covered. This bill protects the privacy of concealed carry permit holders, and has been covered extensively on this blog. Unfortunately this bill has become the target of amendments which effectively castrate the bill and make it useless. If these amendments are not removed, this bill would be effectively dead as the few committee members are over-ruling the majority on this one. Unfortunately as our House is organized at this point, a few committee members can block passage of this sort of progressive legislation. It also shows that certain members of the House clearly don’t value the privacy of their constituency. I strongly believe that if this bill fails, serious challenges to the members of the Judiciary Committee who blocked this legislation should be made as they clearly don’t deserve to represent any Oregonians in government.

Thursday brings up House Bill 2991 which according to OFF, “CHL holders from background checks for gun purchases.” I think it’s a great idea, but I agree with OFF that if it actually passes, then it will see a Federal challenge under the current background check laws.

There are a few other announcement on the OFF page as well, and I urge everyone to go read them and take action. As indicated earlier, the Second Amendment is a Civil Rights issue. The right to keep and bear arms is a right affirmed by our federal Constitution as well as many state constitutions as well. It is a right that has been under direct attack for decades, yet if the recent Gallup poll is an indication, more and more people are reading through the propaganda campaign and waking up to the fact that the one key civil right – the right to protect one’s own life and the life of one’s family – is what is truly under attack. The world is not safe. It never has been, and no government is physically able to “take care” of its people.

Yet that seems to be what the nanny state is promising. The price, of course, is that the nanny state wants to regulate anything it considers “dangerous” in the interest of “public safety” or “public health.” That leads down a slippery slope where the Constitution and Bill of Rights have been shredded and “We the People” are now “We the Drones.” We cannot let that happen. In spite of the current political climate and anti-Second Amendment views of the current leadership, at the grassroots level momentum has been shifting for years. We need to keep that trend going and accelerate it. The goal is protection of our civil right to keep and bear arms for ourselves and future generations. It may take years, but it is a fight we can’t afford to lose!

Until next time!!!

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