Rep. Robin Kelly, a freshman Democrat in the House, is proposing a sweeping infringement on the First Amendment rights of gun owners. The bill would essentially ban any marketing material designed for children. NRA youth days would be banned. It might even become illegal to advertise a club’s Junior Shooter’s program. From the bill:
(a) CONDUCTÂ PROHIBITED. â€”Not later than one yearÂ after the date of the enactment of this Act, the FederalÂ Trade Commission shall promulgate rules in accordance with sectionÂ 553 ofÂ title 5,Â United StatesÂ Code, toÂ prohibitÂ any person from marketing firearms to children. SuchÂ rules shall include the following:
(1) A prohibition on the use of cartoon characters to promote firearms and firearm products.
(2) A prohibition on firearm brand name merchandise marketed for children (such as hats, t-shirts, and stuffed animals).
(3) A prohibition on the use of firearm marketing campaigns with the specific intent to appeal to children.
(4) A prohibition on the manufacturing of aÂ gun with colors or designs that are specifically designed with the purpose to appeal to children.
(5) A prohibition on the manufacturing of aÂ gun intended for use by children that does not clearly and conspicuously note the risk posed by the firearm by labeling somewhere visible on the firearm any of the following:
(A) “Real gun, not a toy.”.
(B) “Actual firearm the use of which may result in death or serious bodily injury.”.
(C) “Dangerous weapon.”
(D) Other similar language determined by the Federal Trade Commission.
Even though commercial speech is generally permitted greater restriction than non-commercial speech, I’m fairly certain this would be unconstitutionally over broad. Unfortunately, we set this precent when we allowed tobacco producers to be thrown under the bus, and our opponents have long tried to get the gun industry treated similarly to the tobacco industry, despite studies that have shown that learning the shooting sports are very beneficial to children.
These people are modern day puritans.