Senator Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ) introduced the Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act of 2009 (S. 1317) on June 22, 2009. The summary states:
"Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act of 2009 - Amends the federal criminal code to authorize the Attorney General to deny the transfer of a firearm or the issuance of a firearms or explosives license or permit (or revoke such license or permit) if the Attorney General: (1) determines that the transferee is known (or appropriately suspected) to be engaged in terrorism or has provided material support or resources for terrorism; and (2) has a reasonable belief that the transferee may use a firearm in connection with terrorism. Allows any individual whose firearms or explosives license application has been denied to bring legal action to challenge the denial.
Extends the prohibition against the sale or distribution of firearms or explosives to include individuals whom the Attorney General has determined to be engaged in terrorist activities. Imposes criminal penalties on individuals engaged in terrorist activities who smuggle or knowingly bring firearms into the United States.
Authorizes the Attorney General to withhold information in firearms and explosives license denial revocation law suits and from employers if the Attorney General determines that the disclosure of such information would likely compromise national security."
Lautenberg's Bill has no sponsors and has been referred to the Judiciary Committee. However, Representative Peter King (D-NY) introduced HR 2459 on April 29, 2009. King's bill has 11 sponsors and has been referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security.
While these bills sound like Bills we could all support, don't forget about the Terrorist Watch List that has had notible people on it such as Ted Kennedy and Al Gore, not to mention the other 1,000,000 people it lists. This is a secret list that we cannot see. However, it catches people as they check in at airports and subjects those to screenings not otherwise required.
The point is, we don't know if our name is on that list or not. If it is, then these bills could effectively prevent anyone of us from owning a firearm. Taken into consideration with the Department of Homeland Security's Report of Right Wing of April 7, 2009, this is frightening. Is this a back door approach to a gun ban? Who knows.
Be sure to let your Congressmen know you do not support either of these bills.
Here are links to:
King's Bill Search Results - THOMAS (Library of Congress)
Lautenberg's Bill Search Results - THOMAS (Library of Congress)
Right Wing Extremism Report: DHS Report on Right Wing Extremism