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Journalist Scott Reed over at the Jacksonville Journal-Courier has apparently realized that delays in processing Illinois’ FOID cards hurt law-abiding gun owners. Illinois is one of only four states that require a license to exercise the Second-Amendment protected right to own a firearm.

Reed wrote:

A Firearm Owners Identification, or FOID card, must be presented when purchasing guns and ammunition. And it is a requirement for possessing a firearm. The average wait time for new FOID card applicants is 122 days according to the Illinois State Police.

If you are an otherwise legal gun owner and are arrested for possessing a firearm without a valid FOID card, you could be facing an offense punishable by up to a year in jail. Before issuing FOID cards, the State Police conduct a full criminal background checks on applicants.

There are a number of reasons why the state has fallen behind in processing FOID applications and renewals. They are inadequately staffed, the volume of applications has gone up two or three fold and COVID restrictions have made it more difficult for office workers to process the paperwork.

Some interesting parallels were drawn by people Reed interviewed on the topic:

Liberals hate [the Heller] decision almost as much as conservatives hate Roe vs. Wade.

“How would a woman feel if she were told she had to wait five or six months to exercise her constitutional right to an abortion?” said Todd Vandermyde, a lobbyist for licensed gun dealers in Illinois. “That’s what’s happening with our constitutional right to bear arms. A woman may be the victim of abuse and wants to buy a gun to protect herself but she may have to wait months and months to get a FOID card before she can even buy a gun.”

There’s another problem with the state requiring a license to own a firearm, and it isn’t just people trying to get a new FOID card finding themselves stuck. FOID cards only last ten years before they expire and, thanks to the processing delays and COVID-19-related issues, there’s a new wrinkle:

Illinois law has required FOID cards for more than 50 years. The cards typically expire after 10 years. But [Illinois State Police spokeswoman Beth] Hundsdorfer said cards that expire during the current COVID crisis have had their expiration dates extended by 18 months through an executive order from Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

But this is far from a satisfactory solution.

Individual police officers don’t always know about executive orders, Vandermyde said.

“If someone hands an officer a FOID card that appears to have expired, that person is likely to get arrested,” he said.

That’s all too accurate. If there’s one thing you should know and understand as a gun owner it’s that members of law enforcement tend not to be up-to-date on gun-related laws and regulations.

There are some LEOs who are well-versed in gun laws, but unfortunately, they’re in the minority. You need to know the laws yourself for any area in which you have firearms. Even then, that may not necessarily save you, as Vandermyde points out.

Deer hunters are being negatively affected, too. There are people who want to go deer hunting this season but can’t get a FOID issued by the ISP, meaning they can’t legally hit the woods.

As usual, gun laws affect only law-abiding citizens, not criminals. Or did you really believe criminals sit around waiting for their State Police-issued FOID cards to arrive in the mail?


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  1. Isn’t there a lawsuit working its way through the courts to void Illinois’ unconstitutional FOID law? I could swear that I remember such a lawsuit.

    • I as well.

      How is a FOID card not clearly unconstitutional from the word go. How did even become a law?

      Is there a FSSID (Free Speech Speaker Identification Card) and other protected rights?

    • From the article:
      “Illinois is one of only four states that require a license to exercise the Second-Amendment protected right to own a firearm.”

      Sorry, but that statement right there tells you everything you need to know about why individual gun ownership in many parts of America is no longer a Right but instead a government granted and highly regulated privilege… And why every legal battle that has been fought to try to protect individual gun Rights in America has been “the wrong fight”.

      Under our system of government, it is only via the constitutional amendment process that our Constitution can be changed, and no such action has ever been taken with regards to altering or redefining the provisions of the Second Amendment. Consider that the 18th Amendment gave us the era of Prohibition and that this mistake of banning alcohol could not be reversed via any act of the Congress or by presidential executive order due to the fact that Prohibition had been made the Supreme Law of the Land with the passage of the 18th Amendment. And so it was only much later with the passage of the 21st Amendment that the era of Prohibition finally came to an end.

      Likewise, absent an amendment to the Constitution that specifically addresses the very clear and unambiguous provision of the Second Amendment that states; “the Right of the people to keep and bear arms Shall NOT be infringed”, the government (at all levels) lacks any lawful authority to regulate the firearms industry. And this is true regardless of what constitutional provision might be referenced or relied upon from the original Constitution document because under the rules of contract law, the terms and conditions of an amendment always override and “supersede” any and all of the terms of the original document that may in any way conflict with the amendment… Under our system of law, it is the new terms and conditions of the amendment that shall and must always prevail, as the amendment always “supersedes” what came before it.

      Every other argument made in defense of individual gun Rights in America is meaningless and only serves to provide us with the reasons for why it is that we have today such a very watered down version of our Second Amendment Right to keep and bear arms. We have in essence fallen into the trap of negotiating over something that was never intended to be negotiable.

    • Just don’t get it changed. When I lived in NJ I only got my FOID card changed once. It’s good for life and the penalty is minimal, so it wasn’t worth the wait time(s).

      • as I recall; if your address on your FOID doesn’t match your Drivers License ID (and therefore the address you put on the 4473) the FFL can’t legally process the transaction. I could be wrong, as I’ve moved from the People’s Republic of Illinois over a decade ago, but I had a similar issue in Louisiana except it was that the address on my 4473 didn’t match my DL address as I was stationed in LA but still had an out of state drivers license.

        • Yes sir you are correct.

          A guy I was going to sell a shotgun to didn’t update his Nj Fid card after he moved houses so the FFL didn’t process the transfer until he got it updated.

        • Yes you are correct.

          A guy I was going to sell a shotgun to didn’t update his Nj Fid card after he moved houses so the FFL didn’t process the transfer until he got it updated.

  2. Rooftop Runoff elections start January 20th. Pick your favorite government official and cast your ballot at them from afar.

    • I believe that all “ballots” in CA are still required to be “lead-free”… prop 65 warnings and such.

    • That’s probably First Amendment speech, but it’s approaching the line.
      I hope you don’t live in West Virginia, where they don’t have a First Amendment.

      • Watch the Leftist scum use that against us, even though their naked threats of death against Trump get a free pass…

  3. Knowing the law doesn’t help you when you run into the “only ones” cop with that stunningly dangerous combination of arrogance and ignorance. You know, the one with the sunglasses that have the mirrors on the inside. He will protect-serve your ass no matter what proof you have, and if you try to exercise your rights too enthusiastically, you may just get a healthy dose of “Comply, citizen!”

  4. Lost my FOID card when in Florida for a couple months earlier this year and it only took 140 days to get a replacement when the law says less than 30 days. It is not easy living in this crooked state as a gun-toting, God loving conservative but I will fight the good fight until the day I leave.

    • It took me two tries one year apart, then 4 months to get my NJ Foid card.
      Local PD gave the “we never got it, USPS lost it, your references never replied back” excuse every time.

      Funny thing was the application papers said that they had to process the paperwork and background check within 30 days or I would have automatically been approved for the card.

      I wasted $5 for the paperwork, $70 to get fingerprinted at a 3rd party company because the local police station doesn’t do it, then $10 to get the card.

      So much for not licensing or charging fees for a right.

    • I hear all the complaints, but surely after all these years it is easy to demonstrate the necessity for these laws, right? Hasn’t someone codified all the benefits which have accrued since the FOID laws were passed? I ask because I am sure some politician is extremely proud of his work on the law, could pop right up with the stats on how it has saved thousands of lives and put jillions of felons in prison forever, right? RIGHT? Demonstrating to the entire state how much it costs and how much it has accomplished is the path to getting rid of it, simple bitching is not. You all know it has accomplished nothing except inconveniencing lawful gun owners, and in fact that is all it was ever intended to do. I don’t (wouldn’t) live there, it’s not my job.

  5. Too few people understand that you are responsible for you. Government and police are not able to shield the individual from all harm anymore than anti-virus software can protect your computer from all internet threats.

    The single best way to be is to take it upon yourself to know and understand what you have. Know what it does and what it does not do. Make it a point to know the laws where you live. Just like with computers. If you don’t know whats on the machine and what isn’t, you are in for a scary ride.

    If you don’t like it you can still choose to either ignore it, put forth the effort to change it, or leave it to someone else. Only ONE of these will lead to happiness.

  6. It’s bad enough having to pay a FFL to run a background check to see if you can be allowed to exercise a Constitutional Right but this FOID crap takes the cake. FOID and the Rats who concocted it need the middle finger salute and a polite but firm gth.

    I cannot wait for biden and the ho to make everyone who does not comply with tyranny an overnight felon. Ah the fast exciting adrenal filled life of a wanted felon on the run like slaves escaping the plantation or Jews escaping nazi germany Nothing like tyrannical “change” picking up where it left off after the obamanation..

    If they concoct slander and libel to overthrow a duly elected POTUS and fail and then they pee on your informed vote by stopping the clock to suspiciously finding or creating enough stupid votes to push a democRat turd in the punch bowl over the top just think what scum like that will do to your Constitutional Rights.

  7. I live in ILLinoyed for now. How Todd Vandemyde equates murdering babies to an enumerated 2nd amendment RIGHT is beyond me…quite unmentioned is the slow walking and 6 months(or more!)delays are planned. They stole millions of dollars in CCL&FOID $ intended to staff & administer the enormous increase in gun owner’s. My FOID expires next year. I hope we’ve left for Indiana!

    • Because the United States Supreme Court holds it above the rights enumerated in the Second Amendment, so Todd is just asking for enumerated rights to be given the same respect in court as imaginary rights. Todd has said and done a lot of things in the past that I might not agree with, but I don’t have a problem with throwing the 2A in the left’s faces by comparing it to one of their sacred bovines.

    • Todd’s point is that abortion (the holy grail to leftists) is (supposedly) a constitutional right. However a clearly defined 2nd amendment right is being trampled on and excuses being made for it. The left wouldn’t stand for the same restrictions on their favorite “right”, and pointing it out further reveals their hypocrisy. We should be storming the statehouse. SAF has a lawsuit, but that will take years. Also, Todd Vandermyde has single handedly done more for Illinois gun owners in the last decade than anyone, we should thank him, not denigrate him.

  8. The dickhead IL Governor ‘Hot Rod’ Blogobitch intentionally cut staff back for processing of FOID cards prior to hunting season in years past because he didn’t like guns.

  9. Don’t forget that the fees from the FOID were pulled from their required balance sheet and put into the general fund. They never used the funds to hire more staff for the uptick in applications.

    The head of the division was having a long term affair with a staffer while in the office and it was known among the staff.

    I saw job openings two months ago for the FOID processing division, but I believe that is a 90 day training period before you can even start processing applications. Not to mention all of the other IL government processing and tests before being allowed to apply for the job.

    One giant mess.

  10. backlog of 122 days is for new apps, the renewals take longer, Oh, and the 122 days is business days, not calendar. 122 days/4.5 days per week(goverment job-lots of paid days off) equals 27 week wait for new foid card. renewals take longer.

  11. “Illinois is one of only four states that require a license to exercise the Second-Amendment protected right to own a firearm.”

    Somebody woke up and smelled the coffee,
    As all forms of gun control are un Constitutional,Ill. and the 4 other states are actively violating their citizens rights. All citizens have the right to arm themselves with out the crowns permission.

  12. The dude’s name is Scott Reeder.

    Please correct the (multiple) misspellings of his name.

    There was a time when people reporting the news proofread first, then published. I really do think it’s easier to do it right than to do it over.

  13. “How would a woman feel if she were told she had to wait five or six months to exercise her constitutional right to an abortion?”
    -such a “right” does not exist. If anything it’s strictly unconstitutional as it deprives a living human being “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” by allowing a supremely vile, selfish and absolutely evil person the ‘right’ to unceremoniously murder a completely and utterly defenseless person because they’re unwanted, inconvenient or because of whatever other lame reason their warped, wicked mind can come up with.

    • IANAL, but pretty sure that is not correct. When the case was argued in, what, 1974, that was a good argument and was considered with many others. But the end result was SCOTUS inventing that Constitutional right, as it now exists, whether you like it or not. If not, the course of action in 1975 would have been to initiate a Constitutional Amendment to prohibit abortion. That has NEVER been done, indicating the majority of Americans approve the current situation. So opponents rely on the hope that if they can just appoint the correct Justices, SCOTUS will AGAIN bastardize the legal system. I don’t think it will, ‘stare decisis’ does not allow such a decision to be changed every time a new Justice is appointed.

  14. What happens (God forbid!) if a gunowner has to move into Illinois? Do they have to leave their collection behind somewhere else until they get this permission slip?

    • The grace period is 60 days after obtaining an Illinois Driver’s License.
      And the grace period for a Driver’s License is 90 days after becoming an Illinois resident.

      • “The grace period is 60 days after obtaining an Illinois Driver’s License.
        And the grace period for a Driver’s License is 90 days after becoming an Illinois resident.”

        So as long as you don’t drive, you never need to get an Illinois FOID card after moving to Illinois?
        LOL, that sounds like a loophole in the law.

        • Get a friend or relative to drive you to the gun store, silly.
          Or an Uber, or a taxi. You don’t need a driver’s license. My parents-in-law don’t have drivers licenses.

        • No reason to go to the gun store at all, since you can’t buy a gun without the FOID. But if you already own plenty, you don’t need to advertise that fact if you don’t drive.

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