Carol Bowne Right to Safety Act

In 2015, Carol Bowne had a restraining order against an abusive ex-boyfriend. But she was wise enough to know paper isn’t a good shield, so she tried to lawfully obtain a defensive firearm.

She waited.

And waited. For New Jersey to deign to grant her permission to protect herself.

Carol Bowne was murdered while awaiting government permission to obtain a defense firearm.

The murderer killed himself later… with a firearm that he possessed unlawfully as a convicted felon. Unlike Carol, he simply ignored the government’s edicts; those just for honest people.

Carol Bowne tried trusting the government.

She died. “A right delayed is…” deadly.

Federal delays of human/civil rights can be just as deadly and state and local violations. National instant criminal background checks (NICS) inherently delay rights. Maybe for a few minutes, maybe a few days, or possibly permanently.

Millions of firearms transaction have been denied by NICS. The Bradys and the victim-disarming confederates brag about it. But 93% of those millins of denials were false positives; violation of rights without cause. The false positive rate may be as high a 99.8%, if you judge by the lack of prosecutions for the remaining 7%.

The government doesn’t track false negatives; those incidents where some prohibited person somehow passes his NICS check. Take a look at the 4473. With name, address, place of birth, date of birth, sex, race, ethnicity, and a physical description, NICS can’t tell a prohibited John Smith from a law-abiding John Smith.

If they even bother with NICS at all.

88-91% of guns used in crimes are stolen, thus bypassing background checks. Only 7% of guns used in crimes were obtained through lawful channels. Presumably because theft is easier and cheaper than buying from an FFL.

And while NICS is mandatory for us law-abiding types, who aren’t out there committing the crimes, the Supreme Court’s HAYNES decision says felons can’t be required to self-incriminate by reporting their attempt to unlawfully obtain a firearm with a NICS check.

NICS doesn’t work. And it only applies to the law-abiding; not simply because the law-abiding are the only ones who’ll bother, but because they are the only ones required to do it.

Kinda makes you wonder why the Brady Bill was pushed as an anti-crime measure, unless violation of rights was the intent.

18 U.S. Code § 922(t)
(6) Neither a local government nor an employee of the Federal Government or of any State or local government, responsible for providing information to the national instant criminal background check system shall be liable in an action at law for damages—”
(A) for failure to prevent the sale or transfer of a firearm to a person whose receipt or possession of the firearm is unlawful under this section; or
(B) for preventing such a sale or transfer to a person who may lawfully receive or possess a firearm.

Violating rights was the point from the beginning. Violators are specifically protected from any consequences of their unconstitutional acts (or inaction).

Let’s write that up formally.

18 U.S. Code § 922
(t)
Strike “(6) Neither a local government nor an employee of the Federal Government or of any State or local government, responsible for providing information to the national instant criminal background check system shall be liable in an action at law for damages—”
(A) for failure to prevent the sale or transfer of a firearm to a person whose receipt or possession of the firearm is unlawful under this section; or
(B) for preventing such a sale or transfer to a person who may lawfully receive or possess a firearm.

and replace with

(6) Any local government or employee of the Federal Government or of any State of local government, shall be liable in a civil action for damages—
(A) for failure to prevent the sale or transfer of a firearm to a person whose receipt or possession of the firearm is unlawful under this section; or
(B) for preventing such a sale or transfer to a person who may lawfully receive or possess a firearm.

Added: 18 U.S. Code § 922(t)
(7) It shall be a felony under 18 U.S. Code § 242 for any local government or employee of the Federal Government or of any State of local government to deny or impede the Second Amendment rights of any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District not prohibited from firearms possession under this section; and that offender shall be guilty as an accessory to the crime if the failure to prevent the sale or transfer of a firearm to any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District whose receipt or possession of the firearm is unlawful under this section results in a crime committed with the firearm.

It’s high time that those in government face consequences for screwing up, just as us little citizens must.

It occurs to me that someone might look up at the masthead at that, “No compromise” and think that I’m offering just that on preemptively-prove-your-innocence prior restrain NICS checks. Read that proposed text again.

Permits and licenses (which criminals bypass) impede rights.

Waiting periods (which criminals bypass) impede rights.

“May issue” denials (which criminals bypass) deny rights.

I’m not compromising. I’m giving the Second Amendment the teeth it lacks. Consider the “accessory” provisions of paragraph (7): that can allow for Felony Murder charges for violators.


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2 thoughts on “Carol Bowne Right to Safety Act”

  1. Not to nitpick, but…

    “the Supreme Court’s HAYNES decision says felons can’t be required to self-incriminate by reporting their attempt to unlawfully obtain a firearm with a NICS check.”

    Not quite correct, although that’s a 100% logical assumption based on Haynes.

    The Haynes decision says that a felon cannot face criminal charges for failing to register a firearm he owns but is not allowed to have, even if such registration is otherwise required by law, because doing so would be self-incrimination.

    It’s not a big step to assume based on Haynes that felons can’t be forced to report their attempt to purchase firearms — it’s not even a big step to assume that felons can’t face federal charges for lying on a 4473 (because admitting that one can’t legally own firearms on a federal firearm-purchase form would be self-incrimination) — and such claims would likely prevail in court (everywhere except the 9th Circuit)…

    … but those are assumptions, because that’s not what Haynes was about.

    Again, not to nitpick, but if we’re dealing in facts and truths, let’s stick to facts and truths. 🙂

    1. 3. A proper claim of the privilege against self-incrimination provides a full defense to prosecutions either for failure to register under § 5841 or for possession of an unregistered firearm under § 5851. Pp. 390 U. S. 95-100.

      4. Restrictions upon the use by federal and state authorities of information obtained as a consequence of the registration requirement,

      That specific case came from an NFA registration issue. The language of the decision makes it clear the state and federal governments cannot force self-incrimination.

      I feel comfortable with my interpretation.

      ADDED: You should also note the other cases that court cited to demonstrate that self-incrimination in other situations (Marchetti v. United States, 390 U.S. 39 (1968), income reporting for taxes; and Grosso v. United States, 390 U.S. 62 (1968), excise taxes). Basically, they said that ANY reqirement to self-report a crimina;l activity is out.

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