AMERICANS DON’T NEED A LAW DECLARING THE “AR-15” THE “NATIONAL GUN OF THE UNITED STATES.”
DISCUSSION OF H.R. 1095
CONGRESSIONAL REPUBLICANS CAN DO BETTER THAN ENACT A LAW DECLARING THE AR-15 RIFLE THE NATIONAL GUN OF THE UNITED STATES. RATHER THE NATION NEEDS RECOGNITION OF THE RIGHT TO CARRY A HANDGUN, FOR SELF-DEFENSE, THROUGHOUT THE UNITED STATES.
Readers of Ammoland Shooting Sports News are probably aware of a House of Representatives Bill (H.R. 1095) introduced by Representative Barry Moore (Republican, Alabama) that “seeks to declare that an “AR-15 style rifle chambered in a .223 Remington round or a 5.56x45mm NATO round . . . the National Gun of the United States,” according to a summary of the legislation.” See New York Post article, published February 23, 2023.
American Military News, in an article also published on February 23, 2023, adds this:
“The bill’s [two] Republican co-sponsors include Georgia Rep. Lauren Boebert and New York Rep. George Santos. AR-15s and similar rifles are the most popular in the U.S., with more than 24.4 million in circulation, according to trade group data reported by The Reload. The rifles are often targets for gun control because they have been increasingly used in mass shootings over the last decade, as reported by USA Today.”
‘The anti-Second Amendment group won’t stop until they take away all your firearms,’ Moore said in a statement reported by Al.com. ‘One rule to remember: any government that would take away one right would take away them all.’
After bringing forward the bill for the AR-15’s national recognition last week, Moore stopped at a gun shop in Troy, Alabama on Tuesday to make the case for its passage. He said the AR-15 has been ‘a cornerstone of American culture for over 60 years,’ according to video taken at the event.’”
Moore introduced the bill on the Floor of the House on February 17, 2023. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability, Introduction of a bill and referral to the bill are the first two actions in the legislative process, turning a bill into a Congressional statute. See the article in congress.gov, discussing this process.
Often a bill languishes in Committee. This occurs when the House Speaker—or, if a bill is introduced in the Senate, the Senate Majority Leader—intends to kill it.
Recall the ill-fated bill, H.R. 38, “Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017,” “a bill to amend title 18, United States Code, to provide a means by which nonresidents of a State whose residents may carry concealed firearms may also do so in the State.”
An amended version of the bill passed the House after two Roll Call votes, on December 6, 2017, and went on to the Senate for action. Paul Ryan was the Speaker of the House, at that time. We were hopeful.
Americans had their best shot at the passage of this bill since, at the time, Republicans controlled both Houses of Congress and the Executive Branch under U.S. President Donald Trump. But our wishes were soon dashed when we saw the bill languishing in a Senate Committee.
In an AQ article posted on November 28, 2018, we wrote,
“Representative Richard Hudson (R-NC) introduced the bill [H.R. 38] on January 3, 2017. The bill passed the House by Roll Call Vote of 231-198, on December 6, 2017. It was sent to the Senate one day later, where it was read twice and then referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
President Trump supports it. The NRA supports it. And rank and file law enforcement officers support it too. But there has been to date no further action on it. The bill sits in limbo. Its prospect of passage is, at present, low. Why is that?
What is the U.S. Senate waiting for?”
In answer to our own question, we learned the reason for the wait. Mitch McConnell wanted the bill to die in Committee. And it did die there.
McConnell deliberately killed it. We had a window of opportunity. And that window is gone.
With fortitude but little fanfare the author of the 2017 “constitutional carry” bill, Richard Hudson reintroduced the bill on January 4, 2021. Nothing came of it.
That, incidentally, was sixteen days before the forces that Crush entire Countries placed the irredeemably corrupt and spineless, dementia-riddled, emotional and physical wreck of a man, the Great Betrayer of our Nation, Joe Biden, in the Oval Office. He has all the hallmarks of a useful puppet. He is someone who would obediently serve them, not us, the American people, accountable only to them, and not us. And, so, the puppet masters pushed him on the public and, having manipulated both the public psyche and the electoral process, making sure that he, Joe Biden, and not Donald Trump, would bear and wear the title, “Chief Executive.” The bill went nowhere. It was referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, on March 1, 2021, And there it died.
On February 20, 2023, the “constitutional carry bill” was “re-reintroduced,” and, this time, in the Senate. John Cornyn sponsored it. Press coverage of it is sparse, essentially nonexistent.
But, a trade group NSSF did reference and commend it. Yet, the bill is a dead letter in a Senate led by New York Democrat Chuck Schumer.
In contradistinction to the “Constitutional Carry” bill of 2023, the “AR-15 National Gun” bill has received a lot of Press attention, most of it negative.
There is a curious thing about the mechanics of the legislative process concerning that bill, though. The bill’s text has yet to be published. News accounts report this, but none of them hazard a guess as to why there is no accompanying text. Usually, if not invariably, a text immediately accompanies an announcement of a bill.
One would expect a text for a bill. Right? Apparently, there wasn’t one for H.R. 1095, though. And why might that be?
Why would H.R. 1095 be introduced in Congress, sans text? Probably for the reason that there is nothing to be said about it that isn’t in the title of it.
Be that as it may, there is nothing in the title that would suggest the bill accomplishes anything. H.R. 1095 is a vacuous exercise in conception, having no purpose other than to rile Anti-Second Amendment members of Congress, the Press, the Biden Administration, Governor Kathy Hochul of New York, and many others that loathe firearms and Americans’ exercise of their right to keep and bear them. The bill has no useful purpose that we can see. It is counterproductive, the conception of it shallow and superficial, and the sponsor and co-sponsors of it, callow, thinking they are accomplishing something worthwhile through the presentment of it. They aren’t.
As explained on the senate.gov website:
“Bills deal with domestic and foreign issues and programs, and they also appropriate money to various government agencies and programs.
Public bills pertain to matters that affect the general public or classes of citizens, while private bills affect just certain individuals and organizations.”
But what does this bill [H.R 1095] do beyond a vacuous declaration, whether true, in some sense, or not, to ascribe to the notion that the “AR-15 is [or should be designated] the National Gun of America?” Nothing positive that we can see. And in the blanket declaration, what does it accomplish? Nothing to strengthen the Second Amendment guarantee if the bill were somehow to become law, and much to harm it. And it is in the harm caused by the mere introduction of it in Congress, that there exists the principal problem with it.
As a cursory note, the idea implicit in the bill—the notion of a declaration of a “NATIONAL GUN,” isn’t even original. The sponsor and co-sponsors of it likely didn’t even come up with the idea.
The sponsor and the co-sponsors of the bill likely didn’t brainstorm this but got the idea after perusing recent issues of the NRA publication, “America’s 1st Freedom.” We perused those issues too. The idea is prominently displayed on the covers of both the January 2023 and February 2023 magazines.
The cover story of the January 2023 issue is “This is My Rifle,” subtitled, “AR-15 is America’s Rifle,” by Serena Juchnowski. The cover story of the February 2023 issue is emblazoned, “America’s Rifle,” and it is subtitled, “What the Gun-Control Crowd Doesn’t Want You To Know About AR-Type Rifles,” by the Constitutional Law expert, and author of several seminal textbooks on the Second Amendment, Stephen P. Halbrook. The articles and Stephen’s books are well worth a read.
One thing implicit in both articles is the fact that Americans have an unalienable right to keep and bear arms in defense of themselves, close friends, and family, and they have a right to keep and bear arms in defense of the security of a free state, from the tyranny of Government.
But, there is nothing in either account of the two lead stories in the NRA that suggests the need for a Statute declaring, or that it would be a good idea to declare, the AR-15 rifle, “the National Gun of the United States.” The reason why is plain.
Americans do not need an Act of Congress to tell them the AR-15 rifle or any other kind of firearm should be designated “THE NATIONAL GUN OF THE UNITED STATES.”
Even the construction of the language of the bill is faulty.
The use of the phrase “United States” in the bill alludes clearly and unmistakably to the Nation’s “standing army,” not to the civilian citizenry. Of course, the military doesn’t use the AR-15 Rifle, anyway. The military versions today are the M4 and M16 assault rifles, which should be available to the sovereign armed citizenry as the final fail-safe against tyranny.
And the word ‘Gun’ is a poor choice of terminology as it is a colloquialism and a slang word for ‘Firearm’ or ‘Weapon.’
The drafters of the bill would have done better to use language such as, “AR-15 IS THE WEAPON OF CHOICE OF THE AMERICAN CITIZENRY.” This phraseology is preferred as it avoids ambiguity and a negative characterization that the informal verbiage of the actual bill, H.R. 1095 conveys. But this is quibbling. The bill is patently unnecessary at best and, at worse, it weakens the natural law right to armed self-defense that exists intrinsically in man. It isn’t the sort of thing that Government bestows on man. Therefore, it isn’t the sort of thing that Government can rescind, or deny to man.
The bill was wrong-headed from the get-go, for many reasons. Worse than unnecessary, the mere introduction of it is counterproductive.
The passage of it, unlikely though that is, would do nothing to secure our fundamental, unalienable right to armed self-defense were passage of it to occur.
We discuss the many serious failings and shortcomings of this bill in the next article.
Copyright © 2023 Roger J Katz (Towne Criour), Stephen L. D’Andrilli (Publius) All Rights Reserved.
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