District of Columbia Personal Protection Act

That’s the name of a bill in Congress right now that would tell the D.C. city government to take its gun ban and shove it. Unfortunately, it’s stuck in committee despite widespread support, and while I don’t often encourage people to do this, today I’m encouraging all of you to make three phone calls to D.C.

The reason for this is that D.C. has no representative in Congress who can vote one way or the other and thus provide them representation. It’s all of our representatives who, in theory, represent them.

D.C. has suffered under a gun ban for 30 years now. Because of it, crime in the District has flourished, with rates of murder and other violent crimes skyrocketing, and the District competing annually with New York City, Chicago and other cities which also have gun bans for the murder and violent crime capital of the world, a title which seems to be awarded — by the Department of Justice! — only to cities whose citizens are prevented from defending themselves from violent criminals.

Unfortunately, some people still don’t understand that the gun ban is driving up the crime rates. It affects only honest people, not criminals, who can still get guns on the black market, or people without prior records intent on starting one, who can buy them openly wherever there isn’t a gun ban. Thus the disarmed honest people can’t defend themselves from the criminals. San Francisco is about to learn this lesson the hard way, just as D.C., Chicago, New York, Camden, N.J., and many other places have.

The places where people can carry guns openly, or carry concealed, such as Texas and Florida, have seen dramatic drops in violent crime since these measures went into effect and honest citizens could defend themselves, as they are supposed to.

Anyway, back to the issue at hand. The Congress tried to do this last session, but the bill died. This session, the bill might still be rescued from limbo.

Particularly telling is the subtitle of this bill: “To restore Second Amendment rights in the District of Columbia.” The Congressional findings are also quite interesting. Read this:

Congress finds the following:

  1. The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution provides that the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
  2. The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution protects the rights of individuals, including those who are not members of a militia or engaged in military service or training, to keep and bear arms.
  3. The law-abiding citizens of the District of Columbia are deprived by local laws of handguns, rifles, and shotguns that are commonly kept by law-abiding persons throughout the United States for sporting use and for lawful defense of their persons, homes, businesses, and families.
  4. The District of Columbia has one of the highest per capita murder rates in the Nation, which may be attributed in part to local laws prohibiting possession of firearms by law-abiding persons who would otherwise be able to defend themselves and their loved ones in their own homes and businesses.
  5. The Federal Gun Control Act of 1968, as amended by the Firearms Owners’ Protection Act of 1986, and the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993, provide comprehensive Federal regulations applicable in the District of Columbia as elsewhere. In addition, existing District of Columbia criminal laws punish possession and illegal use of firearms by violent criminals and felons. Consequently, there is no need for local laws which only affect and disarm law-abiding citizens.
  6. Legislation is required to correct the District of Columbia’s law in order to restore the fundamental rights of its citizens under the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and thereby enhance public safety.

They just came right out and said what we’ve been trying to tell you all along: Not only do guns in the hands of honest people prevent crime, but the local gun bans are unconstitutional. Extra special thanks to Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) and Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.) for introducing these bills yet again.

Contact your Representative and urge him or her to take action on H.R. 1288, and then contact each of your two Senators and urge them to take action on S. 1082. Bonus points if your Representative and Senators actually sit on the comittees holding up these bills.

One thought on “District of Columbia Personal Protection Act

  • February 9, 2007 at 6:59 pm

    There have been a lot of great posts on here. But I think this whole thing can be simplified with a little imagination–.

    Lets say that the anti-gunners win, and every lawful citizen turns in their guns, what about the unlawful ones? Imagine in this world you are sitting at home with your family and an armed criminal kicks in your front door wielding an illegal 12 Gauge shotgun. The fact that he is holding an illegal shotgun will not stop him from blowing holes in you with it. BUT if you had a way to defend yourself (other then harsh language) you could potentially save yourself and your family.

    In the world we currently live in that criminal would have to think twice before entering your home as he may be running into the wrong end of a shotgun himself. The same can be said for mugging and rapes and murder. If more people carried concealed handguns, and used them when they were forced too, crime would go down, period. Criminals talk to each other. And if a larger percentage of criminals got put down lawfully by CHL holders, I promise you it will get criminals attention.

    The only problem with CHL is the same as the Death Penalty. It is simply not utilized enough to be a major deterrent of crime. So rather then discouraging an effective weapon against crime, and ignoring one of the most fundamental rights that our forefathers guaranteed us, shouldn’t we be encouraging it?

    I’ll end this post with a simple illustration. If just ONE person was armed with a CHL and took action in the Luby’s in Killeen, TX when a madman came in and killed 23 and wounded 20 more people, 43 people wouldn’t have to be shot right now.

    It’s your life, if you don’t protect it, who will?

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