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By John McAdams via

The Protect Our Military Families 2nd Amendment Rights Act would make it legal for military spouses to purchase handguns in the state that their husband or wife is permanently stationed while on active duty. According to the Gun Control Act of 1968, citizens may not purchase a handgun in any state that they are not legally considered a resident. A special exception is made for members of the military serving on active duty which allows them to purchase handguns in the state where they are stationed. Unfortunately, this exception does not apply to military spouses. Representative Scott Rigell of Virginia is aiming to change this problem with The Protect Our Military Families 2nd Amendment Rights Act . . .

Rigell has more active duty and retired service members than any other congressional district in the country, so he is very sensitive to the concerns of military families.

According to Rigell, the impetus for this bill was when he was contacted by a military family contacted him after being unable to purchase a handgun in their state in which they were stationed.

Representative Rigell had the following to say about protecting the 2nd Amendment rights of military spouses:

Considering the threats we face from Islamic extremists, foreign and domestic, and lone wolves, it is prudent that our military families have the tools they need to protect their loved ones. Spouses should be able to purchase handguns in the state where their husband or wife is stationed. They have the right to protect themselves, and this bill allows them to fully exercise their 2nd Amendment right. We have an obligation to protect these men and women and ensure they have access to the resources they need to defend themselves and their families in any community they are stationed for duty.

Full text of the Protect Our Military Families 2nd Amendment Rights Act is available here.

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  1. SGT Wales, why are you letting her shoot like that?

    More germane to the topic: That’s great, but that still doesn’t make it legal to carry on base.

    • In my CPL class, there was one woman who kept getting jams in a rental gun that ran fine when the instructors shot it. We figured she was limp-wristing, and they tried a few solutions, including a ‘cup and saucer’ grip. IIRC the only thing that cured her problem was giving her another gun that didn’t need to be gripped as tightly.

        • Oh, now I get it. Bring the gun up to your face, don’t bring your face down to the gun.

        • My guess she her left eye is dominate and she is right handed. She has her left eye closed and can’t get a good sight picture. Also why don’t she have eye protection on?

  2. When I saw the title I thought this might be addressing the issue of all the vets unjustly losing their second amendment rights, alas, it does not.

  3. Wasn’t there a legal case recently that ruled out of state gun purchase bans were unconstitutional? If I’m not a prohibited person who cares what state I buy my gun at?

    • Yes. It involved a couple that tried to purchase a handgun while traveling in multiple States and was denied a handgun purchase.

    • Yes, a couple who (if I recall correctly) lives in Washington D.C. wanted to purchase a handgun in Texas. Unfortunately, the court’s ruling is only binding in Texas or wherever that specific court’s jurisdiction applies. It most certainly does NOT apply to the entire United States of America.

      • Given that NICS didn’t exist in 1968 the law should be changed to reflect that. If I’m not mistaken you still can only buy a long gun over-the-counter from an FFL in a state that borders your own.

        • pretty sure the long gun restriction either expired or was overturned. Some states made corresponding state laws saying only states touching there states borders like Wisconsin but they got rid of that law. Either way it hasn’t stopped several buddies from buying rifles in states from FFL’s that were definitely not connected to NY where I live and I don’t think they were trying to subvert a law. Anyways if they wanted to subvert NY’s insane laws on long guns PA, and Vermont are better choices than driving farther than needed. I predict this whole mess will be removed officially soon

  4. That’s an improvement, but why not just get rid of the geographical restrictions entirely?
    If Sgt Shultz’s wife can buy a handgun in the state where he’s stationed, why can’t my daughter buy one in the state where she goes to school?
    When I visit a gun shop in another state, why can’t I buy a gun cash and carry just like I can in my home state?

    • Because .gov wants to impede gun culture to the maximum extent possible. Telling people that they cannot purchase a handgun in a different state is just one tiny way to annoy people and make firearm ownership less enjoyable.

  5. Honestly, I am a little sick and tired of the carve outs. Sure, the King’s men got all kinds of exceptions back in the day. But a carve-out says nothing good and frankly, everything bad, about the sponsors of this bill. Do they believe this is America, where people are equal to their rulers? Or Not?

    How about the protect ALL families 2nd Amendment rights act? Legalize interstate handgun sales. Period.

    • I don’t look at this bill as a carve-out. I see it as a bill giving the same firearm rights to spouses of military personnel that civilian spouses enjoy.

      Would you rather keep it so that in order to legally comply with the GCA, a spouse of someone stationed at Elmendorf AFB has to travel back to say, Mississippi to buy his/her handgun?

      Doesn’t seem fair to me..

      • I think I’d rather be able to purchase and take delivery of firearms in whatever state I happen to be visiting, without the particular line of work I perform coming into the equation at all.

        The scenario you’ve describe is no more unfair than someone temporarily in Anchorage for a 2-3 month work assignment being unable to buy a firearm while there because his state of residence remains Wisconsin.

        • Very few jobs require your family to move every 3 years, sends the spouse away for 7-12 months at a time, plus weeks or months before that they are away training. So out of 24 months the spouse could be gone 18 months, then about every 4 days enjoys sleep overs on the ship while on duty that day.

          Less than 1% of the US has help defend the US since 9-11. Giving them and their family a break is not something the 99% should complain about. But part of the reason this bill is needed is cause the spouse is not required to change their state of residency when the active duty member is transferred. Prior to 2010 they were required to do so. It should have been addressed in that law, but politicians don’t seem too good at writing laws.

          You can purchase a handgun out of state, it just has to be sent to your local FFL. I watched a local city police officer who lives in NC but works in VA do the paperwork to send her old duty pistol to NC as the force went from HK to Glocks. She had to have it sent to a FFL in NC. The same pistol she took home every time she went off duty. But when it was her pistol it had to be taken to a FFL then processed and handed back to her.

    • We need to understand how we lost our rights in the 20th century; and, then use these tactics to regain our rights. Incrementalism. If we wait for the heaves to open and Washington DC delivers Constitutional Carry nationwide we won’t ever see any results whatsoever.

      Instead of looking to avoid carve-outs we ought to look at the carve-outs that are already there. Attack them where they serve our purposes. E.g., in NJ it is routine to issue a carry permit to armed curriers. They have “need”. What is this “need”? It is the need to protect rich men’s money.

      What is the difference between the money of a rich man vs. the money of a man of modest means. A chain store hires an armored car company to transport it’s cash; what is the shop-keeper to do? Does he have a “right” to hire an armored car company? Or, a right to protect his own money? Does a rich man have a “right” to hire a bodyguard; a poor woman likewise has a right to hire a bodyguard using her rent and grocery money?

      When put in such terms, the rational mind should think of extending the rights of rich men to people of lesser means.

      Let’s look at the LEOSA carve-out for police and prison guards. Why should senior police – who have spent the latter years of their careers behind a desk – need to protect themselves from dissatisfied “customers” from their rookie years? Are their skills still fresh? Then, prison guards. They do NOT carry on-the-job. They too have dissatisfied “customers”; but are they skilled enough to use guns on the street.

      Once we start probing the carve-outs for armored car drivers and LEOs we should be able to get the public thinking about the bases for these privileged individuals. They may decide to support expanding the carry laws vs. fight to defend their carve-outs.

      • Here is a perfect example, if an ID Fraud criminal contacts your bank in an account takeover and removes all your money, there is a very good chance the bank will not contact law enforcement to file a complaint. Local law enforcement will take your report and file it away, “it happens a lot, but unless we think we will get a conviction we don’t do a lot with it”

        BUT if anyone walks in to a bank with their finger in their pocket and politely ask for money OMG every law enforcement officer from local to FBI will be hunting them down.

        People wonder why ID theft/Fraud is so high, they hardly ever get caught, big companies just consider it cost of doing business and we pay for it with higher interest rates, fees, etc.

        • I1ULUZ, you reveal an interesting example, but I couldn’t connect the dots running from my point to your example. Could you please elaborate?

          “. . . big companies just consider it cost of doing business”. This remark resonated with me. A big difference between theft and violence is that the former represents a loss of property while the latter a loss of life. Unfortunately, the operative mentality of politicians, police and proprietors is the same: just another cost of doing business.

          A citizen, customer or employee got killed. ‘At this point, what difference does it make?’ A politician regards a voter’s death as just another cost of finding another voter to re-elect him. A proprietor regards a dead customer as just another cost of advertising for another patron. An employee is a worker’s compensation insurance claim.

          When we – the sheep – begin to recognize that we are cheap then we will demand our equal right to defend ourselves.

        • As someone who’s had money taken by a family member who is a con I can say that LE does not take it seriously even if you have clear cut evidence. I think LE and prosecutors are stuck in old times or just can’t understand a crime that doesn’t have the typical physical evidence in play.

  6. Looks kike she’s got ear protection, but where’s the safety glasses?
    From the looks of her nose, she must be afraid of getting “essence of cordite” up her nose

  7. The bill doesn’t deal with a State such as NJ where it takes a minimum of 2 months, and sometimes as many as 9 months to obtain an FOID and a pistol-purchase permit. A marginal improvement would be to allow a military member or a military spouse to buy a gun in ANY State whatsoever. Thereby a soldier stationed in NJ could shop in, say, PA.

    Albeit it’s merely a small carve-out, I think it’s important to chip away for every right we can restore no matter how small. The real question for us is how deep a bite into the apple we can take with each munch.

    How about exempting military and spouses from the concealed-carry laws of the State where they are stationed. That would be a really big bite from any of the Won’t-Issue States where neither could possibly get a carry permit.

  8. My solution is repeal GCA of 1968 that has stupid laws like not buying a gun from another state. /fantasy

  9. Once again, apparently the constitution only applies in certain zip codes. I’m an American regardless of which state I happen to be in at the moment.

  10. Under Federal law, a person may only buy a handgun in his state of residence. However, the ATF has already ruled that a person can have more than one state of residence.

    In some cases, a military spouse might qualify as a person with two residences, making the spouse eligible to buy a handgun in more than one state. If not, then this new proposed law would fill in the blanks and close the “military spouses can drop dead” loophole.

  11. Am I the only who see’s this ACT as a waste of time. Problem=Wife can’t buy gun where husband is stationed. Solution=Husband buys gun. “I mean technically purchases gun and gives it to wife as a gift” Also this proposed act doesn’t take in to account the children or elderly family members that need to move as well.

    • Wife gets deployed. Husband stays with kids. 1 week into deployment, husband wants gun. Now must wait months for wife to purchase for them?

    • Problem with your “gift” approach is that it can be illegal in some States. E.g., in NJ it is illegal for a husband to give a handgun to his wife until she gets a FOID and pistol-purchase permit. Yet another aspect of strict “UBC” type of laws.

      Once you make a UBC law then you need to carve-out exceptions that obviously don’t make sense such as immediate family. But, of course, the immediate family carve-out never extends far enough. I have a niece who lived with my wife and me between ages 18 and 27; whereas, my kids moved out at age 18. I have as close – perhaps closer – a relationship with my niece then with my kids in terms of knowing who they are as young adults.

      It’s a long slow grind; however, that’s what our political process is all about. Once we allow a regulatory scheme to be enacted (including gun control) we have to reverse it. It’s probably more effective to show why the existing law creates irrational distinctions and then incrementally expanding the exemptions.

      E.g., in NJ a parent can transfer a gun to a minor child, but not when the child reaches the age of 18. This is irrational. Ideally, we would like to argue that NJ should repeal all its gun-laws; but this isn’t going to happen. So, how about arguing for an exemption for transfers to children regardless of age? Then, argue for transfers between spouses; and other cases. Push the incremental exemptions step-by-step in each campaign and in successive campaigns.

      Gradually, the voters get used to recognizing wider rights.

      • The husband deployed thing never crossed my mind since I’ve always had guns. It was no big deal. So if I was stationed in NJ, and then deployed those guns would be in my NJ home in a safe and my wife would know the combination to the safe. So if it came down to me/wife following NJ laws we would seem to be and thus couldn’t be prosecuted. Though if someone broke in the home with harmful intent screw the law…she would have access to the gun.

        • I don’t think so.
          You can bring your guns into NJ (assuming the make/mode/features don’t violate NJ laws).
          If you give your wife the key to your gun safe I think you would have made an unlawful transfer.

          I’m not a lawyer let alone a NJ gun lawyer. But that’s my understanding. NJ laws are designed to make peaceable non-criminals into felons; that’s the motivating principle.

          In a break-in situation if your wife used a gun she would probably be arrested; you probably would be as well.

          In any case, neither you nor your wife could carry off your property. You couldn’t even transport in your trunk except directly to/from a range (or place of other target practice or between homes or to/from a gun smith or to/from a business).

          So, there is almost nothing a military spouse could do to protect herself without waiting 2 – 9 months unless she moved with her own gun; and then, only in the home.

  12. The states are not united, hence different firearm laws among them. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Really Big Erections makes its own laws on the fly.

  13. Whoever the G.I. thats watching her needs to be fired for not correcting the woman shooting.

    Where is the eye protection? Why is she tea-cupping the gun? What the hell type of stance/grip is that? Why is her one shoulder hiked up so high its almost level with the top of her head? So questions on why she is doing stupid and the G.I. is just standing there like a bump on a log… sigh.

    One of the few things I hate the most is when guys don’t show people, especially women, how to properly hold and fire a gun.

  14. The best way to fix this problem is to remove this restriction for all citizens who are not otherwise prohibited.

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