A document produced jointly by the Alliance for Gun Responsibility, the Giffords gun-control group, and the Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence is raising alarms for the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF), and Gun Tests readers should also be aware of what’s in this playbook.
SAF has learned about a new “toolkit” for gun-control lobbying groups to help them campaign for passage of “Extreme Risk Protection Orders,” aka red flag laws or ERPOs. I have written previously about how dangerous the ERPOs are to gunowners’ rights, and how gun confiscations in California and Florida are much higher than anticipated.
The ERPOs are designed to take firearms from people based on allegations from family members, intimate partners, or others. They run roughshod over due process rights, much less the 2A. The ERPO document lays out a how-to strategy to expand red-flag laws in additional states and jurisdictions.
SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb said of the gun-grabbing ERPO manual, “There’s a lot in it about taking someone’s guns, but only two paragraphs about returning firearms to their rightful owner.”
Gottlieb takes issue with many parts of the document, pointing out the inclusion of a letter from a California sheriff’s official that referred to a May 2014 multiple murder in Isla Vista, California as “a shooting spree.”
“Six victims in that rampage were stabbed or slashed to death,” Gottlieb recalled. “It also suggests the shooting occurred at the University of California, Santa Barbara campus, but it didn’t. The term ‘gun violence’ appears throughout, but there’s not a word about ‘knife violence’ nor any mention of the fact that the killer bought three firearms, all legally with background checks and waiting periods.
“We’re all for preventing violent crimes and tragedies such as suicide,” he added, “but there are genuine civil rights and due process concerns related to the use of such orders to disarm someone, following a court hearing they may not even be aware of, before they have a chance to defend against any allegations. This guide asserts guns are ‘temporarily’ removed, but that is not really the case in some instances.”
The ERPO document calls itself a “toolkit” for saving lives, but it talks more about taking guns from people than protecting their rights and means of self-defense. So far as I can tell, this is just another gun-control strategy guide aimed at preventing gun ownership — infringing, you might say — rather than preventing tragedies.