State Sen. Joan Huffman and State Rep. Jeff Leach of Texas, both Republicans, introduced HB 2780 and SB 728 on March 14, 2023. These laws aim to expand the number of Texans whose records are included in the NICS. These two measures would make it illegal for Texas listed in the NICS system to own or acquire weapons.
Their plan for gun control focuses on expanding the definition of “prohibited persons” to include young offenders.
According to Chris McNutt, president of Texas Gun Rights, “these proposals won’t accomplish anything to keep Texans protected from crime but will instead add more people to a federal database that forbids the ownership of firearms. Expanding the NICS database in this manner would only work to strip law-abiding Americans of their constitutional rights solely on transgressions from their youth. You cannot make a mistake or experience a mental health crisis anymore, serve your time, get assistance, and then be reintegrated into society. These lawmakers want to permanently confiscate your firearms.”
Democrat Sen. Sarah Eckhardt introduced SB 1184, a bill that is comparable to HB 2780 and SB 728, alongside Leach and Huffman.
All of these measures would prohibit Texas residents who committed specific juvenile crimes from carrying weapons, regardless of the amount of time they served. The measures also mandate that the state inform NICS of any and all future juvenile inpatient mental health cases. Also, this legislation would open the records of anyone who had inpatient mental health treatment after the age of 16 in the past.
“NICS is a dysfunctional system that needs to be eliminated, not strengthened. In response to federal corruption, juvenile records were dumped into NICS in order to increase the list of banned individuals. Sen. Joan Huffman advocating for this gun prohibition database expansion is unfortunate but not unexpected. She is Dan Patrick’s favorite RINO, and he frequently employs her to carry out anti-gun grubby work that he would rather not claim credit for,” said McNutt.
“One in six young individuals suffered a major depressive episode,” according to the Drug Abuse and Mental Health Services Admin., “although the great majority of individuals who have psychological disorders are not any more likely to be violent than anyone else.”
“Many people have mental health crises while they are young; rather than stigmatizing them, we should be encouraging young people to seek care. Yet, both pieces of legislation will mandate that all future records of mental health issues be recorded into the NICS database, guaranteeing that those Americans will never again be able to exercise their Second Amendment rights. More than 94% of NICS gun purchase denials are “false positives,” which means that more than 94% of the persons wrongly denied a handgun purchase. It is only a formula for disaster to funnel millions more names into this broken system,” McNutt said.
The organization Texas Gun Rights has stated that it opposes each of the three proposals and is pushing its members to exert pressure on their elected representatives to do the same.
Despite the fact that Texas has made significant progress in the past ten years by adopting pro-gun laws like open carry, campus carry, and constitutional carry, there are still ongoing challenges to the Second Amendment. Thus the necessity of constant watchfulness.
Texas gun owners may feel secure knowing that their rights will always be protected because Texas Gun Rights is leading the way in making politicians responsible in the Lone Star State.
Author: Steven Sinclaire