Author’s Personal Opinion
Well, it’s 2023, and we’re 10 years in to the repeated beatings from the legislature, AG, and governor on “assault weapons” bans. I’ve put a table of previous iterations of these bills at the end of this for perusal at your leisure. Every year we all cry out “this is un-constitutional!” or “there is no data to support it!,” and up till now it’s been able to be stopped for some reason or other. Will this year prove different? It’s hard to say.
While we’ve heard time and time again from the AG, “other states have gotten away with it, we can too!,” at the end of the day, two wrongs don’t make a right. Furthermore, it seems like the US Supreme Court (since the State Supreme Court seems to be so politically biased… so much for justice being blind) has finally had enough of this tom foolery and is putting it’s foot down when it comes to protecting all of our rights. The Bruen decision did away with the 2 part test where states have been getting away with saying, “it’s un-constitutional, but… public safety, I guess?” The courts should be basing their decisions upon text, tradition, and history of the 2nd amendment now. Had the Bruen decision come sooner, we may have avoided the magazine ban altogether, as we demonstrated that it didn’t meet that criteria in this article.
It seems pretty clear to me that the Patty Kuderer’s of the world can no longer get away with dismissing people’s rights with, “constitutionality is in the eye of the beholder.”
Now, does that mean the legislature can’t pass an un-constitutional bill into law? No, they do it all the time. Even if it’s flagrantly un-constitutional. Their oath of office effectively means nothing, as it carries no punishment for failure to perform their duties. The Governor and AG could be recalled for failing to uphold their oath, but they know there’s a snowball’s chance in hell of that ever being successful in the current political climate in Washington, so instead they merely flaunt their dictatorial rule over us.
My hope here though, is that the legislature will realize that the passage of this un-constitutional bill will only clog up the courts, cost the tax payers millions to defend, and ultimately loose.
Make no mistake, the legislators have seen that the data doesn’t support this kind of legislation. I’ve been laying it out in front of them for years now, and so have many others. The Office of Firearm Safety and Violence Prevention got stood up by gun control advocates because they didn’t like the data. They then collected the same data sets, found out it doesn’t support their points of view, and continually try to manipulate it to push more gun control. Just look at the Advisory Committee Members on the lower right hand side. Not a single person who has a working knowledge of firearms, thinks that firearms have a place in society, let alone recognize that they are protected tools for the preservation of life and liberty were invited to join. That’s not to say that I believe that the office doesn’t have at least some merit. Youth outreach and violence prevention are very important social causes. Educating people to be safe, avoiding bad life choices, giving people hope, I’m all about that.
That being said, it’s my opinion that they aren’t pushing this kind of legislation in the name of public safety, and never were. In 2021 a person’s odds of being murdered with a rifle were 1 in 1,294,496. A total of 6 murders with a rifle. There were 10 with a shotgun. Yet we need to ban the vast majority of rifles on the market based on these numbers? (And yes, I’ve heard the lethality argument…) Read about how we debunk the entire argument for the bill here.
If you’re wondering where gun control advocates get the disingenuous narratives to push their agenda, you should really check out their playbook.
Things You Should Know About the Bills
Now that I’m done with my tangent, there are some things that you should know about the bills. Firstly, which bills they are. There are two bills being run in parallel. This is not uncommon. These are called companion bills. This allows the same bill to be run in both the House and the Senate at the same time. This is a strategy employed to increase the likelihood of the legislation getting passed.
|HB 1180||Firearms/assault weapons||(Peterson)||Comment|
|SB 5193||Firearms/assault weapons||(Kuderer)||Comment|
|HB 1240||Firearms/assault weapons||(Peterson)||Comment|
|SB 5265||Firearms/assault weapons||(Kuderer)||Comment|
- The bills have an “emergency” clause (for less fatalities than shotguns) which means the bill goes into effect IMMEDIATELY if passed (do not collect $200, do not pass go). I have no idea what this means for dealer inventory other than nothing good.
- The definition of an “assault weapon” encompasses virtually all semi-automatic rifles on the market today and those manufactured decades or even a century ago.
- For now, there is no additional registration requirements or requirement to surrender your property.
- You won’t be able to buy anything new if the bill passes.
- For now, you will be able to pass your firearms onto your direct decedents .
- Moving to Washington with your weapons after this bill goes into effect is a crime.
- Distribution is a crime. A transfer would meet the definition of distribute. Letting someone use your gun at the range is a transfer, therefore a crime.
- A violation is a gross misdemeanor punishable by 364 days in jail and/or a $5000 fine.
Q. Will my SBR that is in-flight in the NFA process will be impacted by this legislation?
A. #notalawyer, #notlegaladvice No, I don’t think so. An SBR has it’s own definition in RCW 9.41.010 placing it outside of this legislation. Again, I think. #notalawyer, #notlegaladvice
What Can I Do?
If you’re asking yourself this question. First, that’s awesome! We need more people interested in being a part of this experiment in self-government. Second, there’s a whole bunch of things you can do.
- Spread the word – get all your friends and family involved. If you’ve got those stick in the mud “my vote/voice doesn’t matter” types in your life, give them a swift kick in the pants. Their vote/voice absolutely DOES matter. Bring them to this page and walk them through the process.
- Write to your Representatives and tell them to oppose this legislation – It’s really easy, there’s links in the table up above that will walk you through it.
- Write to the committee members of the Senate Law & Justice and the House Civil Rights & Judiciary committees and tell them not to pass the bills out of committee. (Contact info below)
- Sign up for e-mail notifications on the progress of the bills. HB 1180 SB 5193
- When you get notified of a public hearing, sign in as opposed to the bills so you’re voice is part of the official record. (we had nearly 15k signed in opposed to the mag ban last year)
- Provide written testimony as part of the sign in process
- Work with us to be able to provide live testimony before the committees (in-person, or over Zoom)
- Join our e-mail list
- Get plugged into the conversation on Facebook
- Join the conversation on Discord
We can’t do this alone, we need you to help us to fight fire with fire in the legislature this year like they’ve never seen it before!
Senate Law & Justice Committee Contact Information
|Dhingra, Manka (D)|
|Manka.Dhingra@leg.wa.gov||239 John A. Cherberg Building||(360) 786-7672|
|Trudeau, Yasmin (D)|
|Yasmin.Trudeau@leg.wa.gov||227 John A. Cherberg Building||(360) 786-7652|
|Padden, Mike (R)|
|Mike.Padden@leg.wa.gov||215 Legislative Modular Building||(360) 786-7606|
|Kuderer, Patty (D)||Patty.Kuderer@leg.wa.gov||223 John A. Cherberg Building||(360) 786-7694|
|McCune, Jim (R)||Jim.McCune@leg.wa.gov||110 Legislative Modular Building||(360) 786-7602|
|Pedersen, Jamie (D)||Jamie.Pedersen@leg.wa.gov||309 Legislative Building||(360) 786-7628|
|Salomon, Jesse (D)||Jesse.Salomon@leg.wa.gov||404 Legislative Building||(360) 786-7662|
|Torres, Nikki (R)||Nikki.Torres@leg.wa.gov||111 Legislative Modular Building||(360) 786-7684|
|Valdez, Javier (D)||Javier.Valdez@leg.wa.gov||403 Legislative Building||(360) 786-7690|
|Wagoner, Keith (R)||Keith.Wagoner@leg.wa.gov||112 Legislative Modular Building||(360) 786-7676|
|Wilson, Lynda (R)||Lynda.Wilson@leg.wa.gov||205 Legislative Modular Building||(360) 786-7632|
House Civil Rights & Judiciary Committee Contact Information
|Hansen, Drew (D)|
|Drew.Hansen@leg.wa.gov||370 John L. O’Brien Building||(360) 786-7842|
|Farivar, Darya (D)|
|Darya.Varivar@leg.wa.gov||369 John L. O’Brien Building||(360) 786-7818|
|Walsh, Jim (R)|
Ranking Minority Member
|Jim.Walsh@leg.wa.gov||428 John L. O’Brien Building||(360) 786-7806|
|Graham, Jenny (R)|
Assistant Ranking Minority Member
|Jenny.Graham@leg.wa.gov||435 John L. O’Brien Building||(360) 786-7962|
|Cheney, Greg (R)||Greg.Cheney@leg.wa.gov||406 John L. O’Brien Building||(360) 786-7812|
|Entenman, Debra (D)||Debra.Entenman@leg.wa.gov||305 John L. O’Brien Building||(360) 786-7918|
|Goodman, Roger (D)||Roger.Goodman@leg.wa.gov||436B Legislative Building||(360) 786-7878|
|Peterson, Strom (D)||Strom.Peterson@leg.wa.gov||324 John L. O’Brien Building||(360) 786-7950|
|Rude, Skyler (R)||Skyler.Rude@leg.wa.gov||122G Legislative Building||(360) 786-7828|
|Thai, My-Linh (D)||My-Linh.Thai@leg.wa.gov||421 John L. O’Brien Building||(360) 786-7926|
|Walen, Amy (D)||Amy.Walen@leg.wa.gov||437B Legislative Building||(360) 786-7848|