I thought that the condescending and offensive article that Everytown planted in Cosmopolitan magazine was the end of their “Gunsplainer” idiocy. The article was published a little over two months ago and the comments left on it were excoriating and unforgiving. Finally, Everytown had come up with a campaign that was so unpalatable it couldn’t gain traction: “if your beau has a gun, break up with him because he’ll beat you and kill you.”
I was wrong.
Everytown now has a whole website dedicated to this crap.
“Lax gun laws put single women at risk.”
Of course they do. True that 77.4% of homicide victims are men, but that’s not a convenient fact for scaring the Beyonce and Taylor Swift crowd over to your side.
The big focus of the site is the “boyfriend loophole.” What is that you might ask. Well, it’s the way that Everytown reads between the lines of the Lautenberg Amendment. The way the ATF defines a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, which is a prohibiting offence for gun ownership, is:
1. is a misdemeanor under Federal, State, or Tribal law;
2. has, as an element, the use or attempted use of physical force, or the threatened use of a deadly weapon; and
3. was committed by a current or former spouse, parent, or guardian of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabiting with or has cohabited with the victim as a spouse, parent, or guardian, or by a person similarly situated to a spouse, parent, or guardian of the victim.
According to Everytown, this mean that it is a legal loophole for a guy to beat his girlfriend and still own guns. When you put it like that, why should a guy every get married, right fellas? Why buy the cow when you can beat her for free?
First of all, the Lautenberg Amendment is the ONLY misdemeanor that I can find that statutorily removes someone’s civil rights. It is a lifetime ban. According to the ATF:
The definition of misdemeanor crime of domestic violence in the Gun Control Act (GCA) includes any offense classified as a “misdemeanor” under Federal, State or Tribal law. In States that do not classify offenses as misdemeanors, the definition includes any State or local offense punishable by imprisonment for a term of 1 year or less or punishable by a fine.
Which means, that you can be banned for life for owning a gun for committing an act that the courts have decided is only punishable by a fine. This is legally tantamount to losing your gun rights for reckless driving. The Lautenberg Amendment seems to have been written on the conservative side because of this unprecedented misdemeanor-causing-a-lifetime-revocation-of-civil-rights situation. The justification for the Lautenberg Amendment, which has been upheld by the courts, is that it exists to prevent escalation of domestic violence to murder.
Although I have to legal proof of this, my belief is that the limitations to “current or former spouse, parent, or guardian of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabiting with or has cohabited with the victim as a spouse, parent, or guardian, or by a person similarly situated to a spouse, parent, or guardian of the victim” exists because it is in these situations that a person who is the victim of domestic violence cannot readily escape from it. This is what allows the violence to occur repeatedly and escalate. The victim has to return to the scene of and the presence of her abuse and abuser. If a man beats his wife, it is hard, logistically, for her just to walk away. She shares a home with him. Even if the man is arrested, when he is released from custody he returns to that home.
Between strangers or even in a non-cohabiting relationship, the victim can more easily avoid his/her attacker. If the guy you’ve gone on three dates with hits you, charge him with assault and never see him again outside of a court room. The cohabitation dynamic does not assert itself in this situation. Without that, any act of misdemeanor (simple) assault becomes a prohibiting offense.
Sure, I can agree to the statement “well, maybe people with a history of violence shouldn’t be able to have guns.” Except that if you look at the statues for misdemeanor assault, the standard can be shockingly low.
In Montana, simple assault can be: (d) purposely or knowingly causes reasonable apprehension of bodily injury in another.
In Washington state: No person may intentionally use, or threaten to use by purposeful words or acts, unlawful physical force against the person of another.
In Florida: An “assault” is an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent.
I’m not a lawyer. But the way I read this is: a guy and girl have been dating for a couple of weeks. They don’t live together. They have a fight and break up. If the girl claims that at any time during the fight the guy made her feel frightened that she was about to be hurt, even if no violence occurred, than the guy maybe found guilty of assault. If the “boyfriend loophole” is repealed, than CONGRATS, he’s just been banned from owning guns for life.
That doesn’t seem like a law that can be abused at all. We know that women never lie about being the victims of violence.
Now, if the Lautenberg Amendment were to be changed simply recognize a state DV conviction, since most states (e.g. Florida) definition of domestic violence, to include non-married cohabitating couples, which might be more representative of society, I could accept that. Because the same cohabitation dynamic exists in an engaged couple living together as a married couple living together.
But the standard put forth by Everytown is just too low. A second date ends in yelling and now the guy can’t ever own guns again? That’s not going to fly.
And if you want any more proof just how bad Everytown is on this, this is the image that you see when you go to that site.
Wow, that is the most unfriendly face I’ve ever seen. She just looks like a bitch that is out to ruin your day. She is going to shut you and your “gunsplaining” down with the type of self righteous, obnoxious behavior, that only a Social Justice Warrior an muster. Or… somebody let off a sauerkraut and beer cheese soup fart in the studio just before the photo was captured.