February 8th, 2007 07:34 AM
Truth IS stranger than fiction-Marion Barry wants to legalize guns for 90 days
Barry aims for gun-ban hiatus
By Gary Emerling
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
February 7, 2007
D.C. Council member Marion Barry yesterday introduced legislation that would suspend the District's 30-year ban on handguns, providing gun owners a 90-day period to register weapons they would then be allowed to legally own.
"We are in the midst of a gun-violence epidemic," said Mr. Barry, Ward 8 Democrat. "We need to see gun violence as an emergency in the District of Columbia."
Mr. Barry's bill, which only applies to pistols, would allow D.C. residents with no criminal record to register guns for 90 days from the law's enactment. After the 90-day period, current gun restrictions would be reinstated.
Barry spokesman Keith Perry said the bill is "an acknowledgment that people do have guns" in the District and would help police better track weapons used in the commission of crimes.
The District has some of the toughest gun laws in the nation and restricts ownership of most guns that were not registered before 1977. Privately owned rifles and shotguns must be kept at home and stored unloaded, disassembled or bound by a trigger lock or a similar device.
Mr. Barry's proposal would increase the penalties for possessing an unregistered weapon in the District from a maximum of one year in prison and a $1,000 fine to 15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
A second offense could result in 30 years in prison and a $20,000 fine, according to the bill.
Mr. Barry, who was robbed at gunpoint in his Southeast apartment in January 2006, cited statistics that said police had confiscated 2,656 guns last year, with 51 percent of those weapons being seized east of the Anacostia River.
A recent Metropolitan Police Department report on homicides from 2001 to 2005 states that 901 of 1,126 homicide victims, or about 80 percent, were fatally shot.
Mr. Barry, who served four terms as D.C. mayor, also referenced the recent shooting deaths of D.C. teenagers Cynthia Gray and Taleshia Ford, both 17, in urging support for the measure.
"We all get outraged ... and we all go home," Mr. Barry said. "Nothing is done to get the guns off the streets of Washington, D.C."
Mr. Barry's bill was co-sponsored by council members Jim Graham, Ward 1 Democrat; Kwame Brown, at-large Democrat; and Tommy Wells, Ward 6 Democrat. It was referred to the Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary.
Mr. Brown acknowledged that the bill "needs some working and flushing out" but that it was a proactive approach to taking guns off of city streets.
"To me, it's the end result," he said. "How do we get guns off the streets of the District of Columbia, get public input and find out how we can make the streets safer?"
Phil Mendelson, at-large Democrat and chairman of the public safety committee, said he had reservations about aspects of the bill. He said the 90-day period during which people who have owned illegal guns can register their weapons seems "counterproductive."
"The intent is right, to deal with gun violence," Mr. Mendelson said. "The amnesty thing, I think, goes against the need to reduce the number of guns in our city." He said the bill would likely be considered during the course of a larger hearing on gun violence.
Peter Hamm, a spokesman for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, said yesterday the organization was not sufficiently familiar with Mr. Barry's bill to give an opinion on it but that the measure could be a tough sell in the District.
"It seems like a real uphill struggle for Mr. Barry to get a lot of broad support for something like this," Mr. Hamm said. "Washington, D.C., is suffering from a lot of gun violence lately and to say, 'Let's bring more guns into the equation as a solution,' doesn't sound like it makes a great deal of sense."
Chris W. Cox, chief lobbyist for the National Rifle Association, also said Mr. Barry's proposal was a surprise and that the organization would study the bill.
"Obviously, we support efforts to allow law-abiding residents of the District to own firearms," Mr. Cox said. "And we will continue in those efforts."
Congressional attempts to repeal the District's gun ban in recent years have been criticized as attacks on the District's right to home rule.
In 2004, the House of Representatives voted in favor of repealing the city's restrictions on gun ownership and registration, even though the measure was opposed by the District's mayor, 13 council members, the police chief and the city's congressional delegate. The bill was not brought to a vote in the Senate.
A federal appeals court heard arguments in December about whether the District's decision to prohibit residents from owning guns is a violation of the Second Amendment. That decision is pending. A U.S. District judge rejected the argument, brought by six D.C. residents, in 2005.
"Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18
Guns Save Lives. Paramedics Save Lives. But...
Paramedics With Guns Scare People!
February 8th, 2007 08:04 AM
Ahhh... A ruse! If you register the guns, they can take them away later citing the need for safety and "peace."
You have to make the shot when fire is smoking, people are screaming, dogs are barking, kids are crying and sirens are coming.
Ego will kill you. Leave it at home.
February 8th, 2007 08:16 AM
It's a change of tactics. It would, indeed, provide for better tracking of firearms.
'Barry spokesman Keith Perry said the bill is "an acknowledgment that people do have guns" in the District and would help police better track weapons used in the commission of crimes.'
Glad to see the concept of allowing firearms access to individuals getting some play. It's at least a tacit agreement that the current methods are an absolute and utter failure. I suppose that's something.
Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
self defense (A.O.J.).
How does disarming
the number of victims?
Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos)
NRA, SAF, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.
February 8th, 2007 08:38 AM
Originally Posted by Miggy
Exactly my thoughts as soon as I started to read it. I don't think that qualifies at tin hat thinking either.
"fundamental principle of American law that a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any individual citizen." [Warren v. District of Columbia,(D.C. Ct. of Ap., 1981)]
If I have to explain it, you wouldn't understand
February 8th, 2007 08:48 AM
Sounds like a gun grab t me! Be careful.
February 8th, 2007 09:48 AM
Marion Barry? A ruse.
February 8th, 2007 10:02 AM
90 days to register, to be followed immediately by a bill to confiscate all registered guns.
Count on it.
Battle Plan (n) - a list of things that aren't going to happen if you are attacked.
Blame it on Sixto - now that is a viable plan.
February 8th, 2007 10:22 AM
I thought you were going to say Marion Barry was legalizing CRACK for 90 days. That would be more fitting.
"Barry Arrested on Cocaine Charges in Undercover FBI, Police Operation
Sources Say Mayor Used Crack in Downtown D.C. Hotel Room"
By Sharon LaFraniere
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, Jan. 19, 1990; Page A01
February 8th, 2007 11:26 AM
Hmmm, a tacit admission of DC's probs and then yes .... a plan for gun grabs
Boy is that place ever screwed up - it's about time it joined the U.S.A.
Chris - P95
NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.
"To own a gun and assume that you are armed
is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."
- a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.
February 8th, 2007 11:29 AM
Originally Posted by P95Carry
Ha, I'd make Guam a state before I let DC in.
February 8th, 2007 01:06 PM
Crackhead gonna let everyone register for 90 days. Then at dawn of day 91, gonna take every registered gun and what ever others they can find. Politicians.
A person is justified in the use of deadly force, if such person reasonably believes deadly force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to such person or a third person.
February 8th, 2007 01:35 PM
After the registration, followed by the inevitable grab, we can all scream the following at Councilman Barry:
B***h set me up!
We'll see if he appreciates the irony...
A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.
February 8th, 2007 02:31 PM
I trust Marion Barry about as far as I can throw him. You can bet he isn't doing this in the intrest of the gun owners. Once regestered he can turn around and grab the guns and we could do nothing to stop him. He has been denying the people of DC their Second Amendment rights for 30 years so why the change of heart now. Barry go smoke some more crack.
February 8th, 2007 02:31 PM
this just seems to me like a plan to find out exactly how many guns are in the city.. well at least the good people's guns. Register them.. we want you to legally own them... until we come get them, now that we know where they are.
I don't get it... if you support good people owning their handguns, then why on earth do you only give them 90 days to register them? Why can't someone next year go buy a handgun and legally own it?
February 8th, 2007 02:47 PM
Originally Posted by mech1369dlw
They let the crackhead get re-elected, so don't they deserve whatever crackhead scheme he thrusts upon them?
When I first read the headline, I thought, "OMG, they're going to do a dry run to see what the demand for guns among the good citizens of D.C. is like! They're actually going to make a short window during which it will be legal to obtain and own guns in D.C. again!"
Of course, that's not what this is about. It's about an expectation that the criminals in D.C., who have the illegal, unregistered guns, are going to decide that it's a good idea to let the authorities know that they have them during a 90-day period when they won't be arrested for admitting to illegal gun possession.
This appears to have nothing to do with allowing citizens who would be gun owners to go out and buy and keep guns to defend themselves against crime.
Watch out, indeed.
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