Details on Abraham’s Testimony

An e-mail alert from PA Federation of Sportsman’s Clubs provided some more detail on Lynn Abraham’s testimony before the House Judiciary Committee. Here’s her recommendations:

  1. Permit the disclosure and examination of mental health records for individuals seeking to purchase firearms
  2. Strengthen Section 6105 to prevent people previously convicted of any violation of the Uniform Firearms Act from buying another gun
  3. Amend Section 6105 so that people awaiting trial on firearms offenses cannot possess firearms
  4. Require the owner of a lost or stolen firearm to report the theft or loss within 24 hours of discovery and punish the failure to report as a misdemeanor of the first degree
  5. Treat adult violations for convicted felons who possess firearms the same, regardless of whether the prior disabling offense was an adult conviction or a juvenile adjudication
  6. Make sure that people convicted of illegally transferring a firearm cannot legally possess more guns in the future
  7. Mare sure defendants convicted of lying on state or federal firearms forms are disqualified from owning a firearm
  8. Prevent defendants convicted of filing false police reports for theft of a firearm from possessing firearms

One would be acceptable if proper safeguards and relief from disability mechanisms are in place.

Two and three are absolutely out of the question. There are many violations of UFA that are minor, and more than a few that are summary offenses. I have no problems with barring firearms ownership for people convicted of violent crimes, but not for UFA violations, which are not violent, and certainly not for anything less than a conviction.   These are rights, not privileges.  You don’t take away rights unless there’s been due process.

Four is absolutely out of the question. There is no reason to subject someone, who was the victim of a theft, to further punishment. At most, the very most, this should be a summary offense.

Five I’d be willing to talk about.

Six, no way. Just lending Bitter a handgun to carry is technically illegal in this state. I’d be willing to trade that for some significant changes in UFA’s transfer provisions.

Seven, no. Lying on a form is not a violent crime.

For eight, it seems to me that making false statements to police is already unlawful, but it’s not a violent crime. No go on prohibited person status for that offense.

4 thoughts on “Details on Abraham’s Testimony”

  1. I’m surprised you think #1 is acceptable; you’re in pharma, you know that half the country is on SSRIs for various reasons. That’s putting the camel’s nose under a very big tent.

  2. The federal guidelines for what constitutes a mental health firearms disability are actually pretty stringent. It’s not enough to take SSRIs, or ever have been treated for a mental health condition. You have to be, for the most part, nuts. There are some problems I have with Pennsylvania’s Mental Health Procedures Act, but that’s separate from the UFA. These folks are already prohibited, the MHPA just prevents many records from being put into PICS. Abraham is essentially asking for the same thing Governor Kaine did in Virginia.

  3. “5. Make sure defendants convicted of lying on state or federal firearms forms are disqualified from owning a firearm.”

    That is presently a Federal Felony punishable by 5 years in prison as to federal forms.
    It’s a law I would like to see prosecuted every time. It’s an easy case to make, requiring few investigative or prosecutorial resources. The signed form itself is a de facto confession as it is signed under penalty of perjury. The presence of the perp at the gun store during the instant background check makes arrest simple.

    And if you lie on a 4473 either you are already not qualified to own a firearm, or you are too stupid to be trusted with one.

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