Veterans' gun rights sticky issue in defense bill

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Quigley_Sharps, Dec 3, 2012.


  1. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

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      Associated Press/Evan Vucci, File - FILE - In this Jan. 25, 2011 file photo, Sen, Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., left, talks with Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., on Capitol Hill in Washington, during President Barack Obama's …more

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Should veterans deemed too mentally incompetent to handle their own financial affairs be prevented from buying a gun?
    The issue, for a time last week, threatened to become the biggest sticking point in a $631 billion defense bill for reshaping a military that is disengaging from a decade of warfare.
    Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., sought to amend the bill to stop the Veterans Affairs Department from putting the names of veterans deemed too mentally incompetent to handle their finances into theNational Instant Criminal Background Check System, which prohibits them from buying or owning firearms.
    Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., objected, saying the measure would make it easier for veterans with mental illness to own a gun, endangering themselves and others.
    "I love our veterans, I vote for them all the time. They defend us," Schumer said. "If you are a veteran or not and you have been judged to be mentally infirm, you should not have a gun."
    Currently, the VA appoints fiduciaries, often family members, to manage the pensions and disability benefits of veterans who are declared incompetent. When that happens, the department automatically enters the veteran's name in the Criminal Background Check System.
    A core group of lawmakers led by Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., has for several years wanted to prohibit the VA from submitting those names to the gun-check registry unless a judge or magistrate deems the veteran to be a danger. This year's version of the bill has 21 co-sponsors. It passed the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee by voice vote, a tactic generally reserved for noncontroversial legislation. Coburn's amendment to the defense bill contained comparable language.
    "All I am saying is, let them at least have their day in court if you are going to take away a fundamental right given under the Constitution," Coburn said in the Senate debate last Thursday night.
    Congressional aides said Coburn will likely drop his effort to amend the defense bill with his proposal, but that he intends to try again on other bills coming to the Senate floor.
    The number of veterans directly affected by the VA's policy doesn't appear to very large. Only 185 out of some 127,000 veterans added to the gun-check registry since 1998 have sought to have their names taken off, according to data that the VA shared with lawmakers during a hearing last June.
    Still, the legislation over the years has attracted strong support from the National Rifle Association and various advocacy groups for veterans.
    "We consider it an abject tragedy that so many of our veterans return home, after risking life and limb to defend our freedom, only to be stripped of their Second Amendment rights because they need help managing their compensation," Chris Cox, the NRA's chief lobbyist, wrote last year in an editorial.
    The NRA did not respond to queries from the AP about Coburn's latest effort.
    Dan Gross, president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, said gun control advocates consider the VA's current policy reasonable.
    "We're talking about people who have some form of disability to the extent that they're unable to manage their own affairs," Gross said. "If you're deemed unable to handle your own affairs, that's likely to constitute a high percentage of people who are dangerously mentally ill."
    Tom Tarantino, chief policy officer for Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, said veterans with atraumatic brain injury or post-traumatic stress disorder but who pose no threat to others are possibly being barred from gun ownership. The current restrictions might even be a disincentive for veterans to seek needed treatment, he said.
    "We want to remove these stigmas for mental health treatment. It's a combat injury," Tarantino said. "They wouldn't be doing this if you were missing your right hand, so they shouldn't be doing it if you're seeking treatment for post-traumatic-stress-disorder or traumatic brain injury."
    VA officials have told lawmakers they believe veterans deemed incompetent already have adequate protections.
    For example, they said, veterans can appeal the finding of incompetency based on new evidence. And even if the VA maintains a veteran is incompetent, he can petition the agency to have his firearm rights restored on the basis of not posing a threat to public safety.

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  2. gunbunny

    gunbunny Never Trust A Bunny

    If it was up to Schumer, everybody that wanted to buy a gun would be deemed mentally ill.

    Wow, they think it's reasonable. This is my shocked face: :blah:
    They will think anything is reasonable as long as it continues, however incrementally, their long march FORWARD.
     
    VisuTrac likes this.
  3. UGRev

    UGRev Get on with it!

    Fuck you Schumer.
     
  4. BTPost

    BTPost Old Fart Snow Monkey Moderator

    My sentiments exactly... UGRev....
     
  5. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    "Our main agenda is to have ALL guns banned. We must use whatever means possible. It doesn't matter if you have to distort facts or even lie. Our task of creating a socialist America can only succeed when those who would resist us have been totally disarmed.
    Sarah Brady"

    I think that says it all.....
     
  6. VisuTrac

    VisuTrac Ваша мать носит военные ботинки Site Supporter+++

    @kellory, I've been searching for where/when Sarah Brady said those exact words for a long time. I've not found the source material yet. I've found lots of people quoting that saying she said it. But I've not found it in the congressional record or a source journal. If you have any links to the original source, PM it to me or post it here so I can dig into it further.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  7. VisuTrac

    VisuTrac Ваша мать носит военные ботинки Site Supporter+++

    Anyway, I don't trust congress critters any further than I could throw them into an erupting volcano.
     
  8. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    that only works with Virgins, and where would you get one in congress?
     
  9. VisuTrac

    VisuTrac Ваша мать носит военные ботинки Site Supporter+++

    LMAO, I wasn't trying to appease the gods, just get rid of congress critters.
     
  10. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    http://thinkexist.com/quotation/our-main-agenda-is-to-have-all-guns-banned-we/391606.html(I have never used this site, but a google hit light up here. there were many more hits.
     
  11. VisuTrac

    VisuTrac Ваша мать носит военные ботинки Site Supporter+++

    They only attribute it to her. Supposedly she said it. I've seen this quote for many years now (in different forms) but not been able to find it other than 'Quoted on the Internet'

    I've been looking in the congressional record and other journals trying to find in what context she said it. What grinds me on this one is 'Socialist America'. find it hard to believe anyone would be so stupid to say it. I guess I'll keep digging for the truth.

    Any one have access to Lexis/Nexus care to do a search?
     
  12. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member


    bitly | ♥ your bitmarks
     
  13. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    It's bogus? I've seen it for years from many different places. Sorry I brought it up.:(
     
  14. UGRev

    UGRev Get on with it!

  15. CaboWabo5150

    CaboWabo5150 Lost in the woods

    "current policy of prohibiting vets deemed too mentally incompetent to handle their finances from buying guns."
    "mentally incompetent to handle their finances"
    Fiscal Cliff ?? Debt Ceiling ???
    I would say then that the U.S. Government is not competent to handle their finances, and therefore should hand over all of their guns to "we the people" :)
     
    VisuTrac, oldawg, gunbunny and 2 others like this.
  16. VisuTrac

    VisuTrac Ваша мать носит военные ботинки Site Supporter+++

    QS, that was kinda what i was getting at. ;)
    I was trying the teach someone to fish.
     
    Quigley_Sharps likes this.
  17. VisuTrac

    VisuTrac Ваша мать носит военные ботинки Site Supporter+++

    I think they want all the guns so they can safely get the rest of the money that they may have missed whilst fleecing us.
     
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