HB77 passes NM Senate Judiciary Committee

In a very late committee hearing last night at 11:23pm or so, the New Mexico Senate Judiciary Committee passed out of the committee HB77 Firearms Transfer Act.  We would like to take the time to thank all of those who came and supported the fight last night including Tara Mica from the National Rifle Association, James Gilman from Calibers, representatives from New Mexico Gun Collectors Association, 1 Million Moms Against Gun Control, Santa Fe County Republican Party, NMGOA, and a few others.  Also in attendance were a good number of people that supported the bill, who have been here all week wearing little nametags that said "YES HB77".  

I have heard many opinions expressed by both sides and by gun owners themselves on both sides of this issue.  I must say that I was not surprised by most of these, but my biggest problem with this bill is that it will do nothing to stop the problems that are claimed to be fixed by it.  I will not waist time with the feelings about this, but will instead discuss the logic behind this bill.

1. As gun owners, we must do something, and this really won't hurt our rights to keep and bear arms.

Obviously, this is true.  But just because we should do something and this bill isn't the extremely harmful bill that it started out as, doesn't means this is a good place to start.  First of all, we haven't been enforcing the current laws, so how does writing another one help anyone?  Also, the point of background checks is that only the law abiding follow the laws that require them.  For instance, around 1.2% of background checks are denied.  In 2010 that was 72,659 out of over 6 million checks.  Of those only 33 people were charged with a crime, even though every legitimate denial must have included a felony.  If passing a gun control law would stop the criminal from being a criminal, we should have no crime whatsoever with more than 20,000 laws on the books now.

2. We should pass common sense gun laws.

Please explain how shoehorning a federal system built for dealers into a system for private transfers becomes common sense.  When I have tried to explain the process, and that it will basically destroy all private transfers at gun shows, I have received the following responses:

a. Then we need to change federal law.

b. It will not!

c. We need to pass common sense gun laws like this one.

d. - The honest ones tell me this - We will not sell guns at the show, just do a show and tell, then sell them after the show out of the back of the car.

My response is only exactly what I said the first time.  It will stop all private transfers at gun shows.  Although some gun owners will not be effected, some will, and if this fight has taught us anything, it is the truthfulness of the statement by Benjamin Franklin at the signing of the Declaration of Independence.  "We must all hang together, or we most assuredly will all hang separately."  We have to find the ways to stand with each other and not give another inch in the defense of all of our rights.

I believe we should do something about gun violence.

a. We should not be allowing plea deals to bypass mandatory minimum sentencing for gun crimes.

b. We must enforce the laws that we now have.

c. We must hold the responsible parties accountable for their actions.

d. We must get rid of so called Gun Free Zones, and allow responsible citizens the opportunity to protect themselves and those around them wherever they go.

e. We must strengthen our self defense protections for law abiding citizens.

3. As responsible gun owners and citizens, we must be seen to be proactive.

I am afraid that most gun owners are only proactive in self defense, and that most of them would vote for a new party called the "Leave us the hell alone" party.  They don't want to be bothered, and feel if they aren't trying to force everyone to own a firearm, those on the other side should not force them to do things they don't want to do.  I was one of these, and if it could work, I still would, but I agree that we must be proactive.  The other side would like nothing better than to divide us into these little factions that could be played against each other.  

I will not go into all of the petty or feeling based arguments as they are only valid if we leave our reasoning skills at home.  Our country was founded on the ideals of individual rights, individual liberty, and individual responsibility.  Over the last 230 years we have become less interested in being individualistic as a people, and have moved to a progressive ideal of community responsibility.  We have, as a nation, decided that criminals are not responsible for their actions but that the law abiding are responsible for them.  That civil society should take care of those who violate our laws and norms, and that we should treat them as the victims.  With our elected representatives across our great nation tell young college women that they cannot be trusted with their self defense because they might "pop" the wrong person, or that they can just use a call box to stop a rape.  These people should be shamed to the point of leaving public life.  Anyone who believes that any person should have less rights than themselves have no business being in charge of anyone or any laws.  The only ones that should have less rights are those who have violated others rights.

Ok, I will get off my soapbox for a minute.  I do want to thank all of those who have contacted their representatives and senators and encourage you all to continue contacting your senators.  They are down to about 30 hours left in session. 

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SJC 9-12 Project Meeting

Aaron Lee, Executive Director of the New Mexico Gun Owners Association will be speaking at the monthly meeting of the San Juan County 9-12 Project / Farmington NM TEA Party meeting tonight at 7:00pm at the Totah Theater in Farmington, NM.  He will be speaking on the recently completed legislative session in Santa Fe and the good, bad, and ugly firearms bills that were introduced this year, and what happened to them.

He will also give a basic overview of the NMGOA and where we go from here.  He will be introducing a few new ideas to help strengthen and protect all New Mexicans firearms and self defense rights.  He will be making numerous visits around the state during the coming months.  If you know of a group that would like for him to speak, please contact us by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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