Aside from the unsavory contempt this law shows for the traditional American
right to keep and bear arms, it creates a situation where the right to
arms is effectively banned in populated areas. This is simply unacceptable
and must be fixed. The needed amendment deletes 18 words from a legal
definition, see it here.
Guns will still be banned from school grounds under this amendment.
We have here a textbook example of a bad law, a feel-good law,
with no crime fighting component, that never should have been passed in
the first place
Criminalizes the routine actions of half the population.
Creates tens of millions of five-year federal crimes daily
with no actual crime committed, only paper offense
Utterly unenforceable, never intended to be enforced
Shows the lengths some in Congress will go for effect without substance;
an embarrassment to those who sponsored it
Violates the rights all Americans have, and thus violative of congressional
Disrespectful of the honorable role of firearms in modern life
and our heritage
Ignores the basic human right to self defense, and the Bill of
Nowhere is Congress delegated authority to enact such local laws.
Overturned by the Supreme Court for unconstitutional use of Commerce
The Lopez case, 1995; subsequently reenacted,
1996; it remains a painful example of federal encroachment on states
Such an egregious affront to rights Americans hold dear needs more than
correction, it urges positive action in the recognition and defense of
this fundamental civil right. The gun-owning public is aware that Republicans
have taken virtually no direct steps to secure individual peoples
rights against infringements that grow daily. This unacceptable law is
the poster child for improvement to that policy.
Discrimination against people who exercise their Second Amendment rights
should be weeded out as vigorously as any other civil rights offense.
Bigotry, foul language and intolerance directed at people who exercise
their rights to arms should earn the same rebuke as any racist, sexist
or other offense behavior. Training not fear; familiarity not avoidance;
historical significance not media-driven doom-and-gloom, gun safety not
gun bans, education not ignorance. Unalienable rights.
The net effect of this atrocious affront to our rights
The Gun Free School Zones law is essentially unenforced and unenforceable. It was a feel-good Clinton-era thing, and made the left feel like they were doing something when they were not. I have heard it has been used on rare occasion as an add-on charge when they bust a drug dealer at school, but have not corroborated that myself, and the feds are tight lipped about releasing any data.
Think about this -- they pass all these laws and you can't look up how many times the things are used or what measurable effect they're having. Why let the public know some laws are meaningless, they might try to repeal them, it's not in a bureaucrat's best interests. It should be easy to find, all the court records are computerized at this point, just search for the bill number (18 USC §922(q)) and see how many cases come up. Man I wish I had access to that computer. After all, it belongs to we the people right?
What this law is is a sword of Damocles hanging over our heads. There are no "federal police" on patrol (not yet anyway) who could enforce this affront to our rights, and local police would be out of their jurisdiction on the matter. The feds could conceivably use it selectively to go after people, which would be illegal of course, but selective enforcement has been routine for decades, and then you can go fight city hall against bogus charges. The law needs to be repealed, but where do you find the political capitol to do that? And what would the media tell the public about such an effort to preserve and protect our precious rights? They'll make you look like godless heathens looking to exterminate innocent school children, and you know I'm not exaggerating. God help us if the feds ever decide to go full bore on this unconstitutional garbage.
The law does have a clear exemption for private property, so a person can live right next to a school with all the firearms they like, but as soon as you walk or drive off your property you're technically in violation. Did I mention that this onerous abomination should be repealed? (There is an exemption for the 1-2% of the public that have submitted to the gun-permit schemes local governments have implemented, gee, thanks a lot.)
The biggest problem with owning a spread next to a school and shooting on your own land is not the federal law, it's the school employees who, if they hear gunfire, will react like crazed hoplophobic psychos and come after you every way they can. Schools have no tolerance for the right to keep and bear arms and have punished children for wearing an NRA T-shirt or reading a gun periodical, and they'll use harassment, nuisance suits, noise ordinances, trumped up endangerment charges, disorderly conduct, inapplicable laws, publicity, outrageous letters to parents and anything else they can think of to end your enjoyment of your property.
Now, in all fairness, if I heard gunfire next to my daughter's school, it would at least raise my eyebrows. In this day and age, etiquette seems to suggest that range activities need to be at remote locations, an increasingly scarce commodity.
Let me wrap up by saying this wacky left-wing attack on our rights makes criminals out of half the population all day long, for nothing more than possession of private property, with no victims, no harm of any kind, no mal-intent, and no rational justification in a free country. Did I mention it should be repealed?