GOP Rep. Burgess Owens Rips Democratic Gun Control Bills on House Floor


Freshman GOP Rep. Burgess Owens of Utah, a former NFL star safety, trashed new Democratic anti-gun legislation for eliciting memories of anti-gun laws in the Jim Crow south and for suppressing Constitutional liberties while speaking on the House floor Wednesday.

Democrats in the House passed two anti-gun bills this week — both intended to either make guns more challenging to obtain or to essentially create a non-gun registry (which is essentially a gun registry). On Wednesday, Owens opposed the anti-American and anti-gun bills in remarks on the House floor when he read letters from his constituents over both H.R. 8 and H.R. 1446.

Owens was succinct in his remarks to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and he let his voters do some of the talking.

“Madame Speaker, I rise today in opposition to H.R. 8 and H.R. 1446. In the last week, I’ve received over 1,000 emails from constituents in strong opposition to these anti-gun bills. Here is a sample,” he stated.

Owens, who is black, read a number of letters from Americans and reminded Congress that the government once denied gun rights to black Americans.

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“H.R. 8 will make it impossible to sell or loan guns to my relatives and trusted friends,” one letter read by Owens stated, while another added: “These bills appear designed to impose restrictions on natural rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.”

Another added: “Stand for our rights and oppose these measures with every tool in your grasp.”

“I absolutely will fight these measures with every tool in my grasp,” Owens said. “These rights to protect my life, liberty and property were granted to me by God and cannot be taken from me by D.C. bureaucrats.”

“I grew up in the Deep South at a time when black Americans were unable to defend themselves. After the Civil War, Black Codes and Jim Crow laws prohibited people of color from owning firearms. In the mid-1950s, Martin Luther King, Jr. kept firearms for self-protection, but his application for a concealed weapons permit was denied because of racist gun control laws in his state,” he added.

Do you agree with Owens that these bills would restrict our Constitutional rights?

“As a child, my dad witnessed an altercation between his father and a southern white man who thought my grandfather was being disrespectful and threatened to teach him a lesson,” he continued. “Later that night, he drove up to my grandfather’s home with a bunch of his friends standing on the forerunner of a Model T Ford.”

“My grandfather was prepared — he and his brothers hid around his front porch. As these bullies and cowards approached the house, they heard the click of rifles and left just as fast as they came,” Owens said. “Without ever firing his gun on another human being, my grandfather’s right to own a firearm ensured his rights to protect his life, liberty, and property.”

Owens respectfully yielded his time back after the brief remarks.

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One of those bills the former football star referred to, H.R. 8, targets gun sales and transfers which are not cleared through the flawed FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check System. That bill would make any person who transfers ownership of a firearm to any person who is not an immediate family member a criminal.

While it does not outright create a gun registry, it would put more guns on the government radar by requiring friends and neighbors to go through a government channel to give and receive guns.

It’s of course not the government’s business what law-abiding and decent people do with their firearms, but Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer vowed a Senate vote on the bill Thursday in a hyperbolic statement.

“The legislative graveyard is over. H.R. 8 will be on the floor of the Senate, and we will see where everybody stands,” he said.

“Certainly hundreds of thousands — maybe millions — of people walking the streets today because we passed [the 1994 Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act] would be dead,” Schumer said. “But when we passed the law, little did we know it had some loopholes in it that we didn’t know at the time. We didn’t know there would be an internet, so we didn’t prohibit internet sales without a background check.”

The other bill passed by House Democrats is H.R. 1446, which would prolong the amount of time the FBI can hold up background checks from three business days to 10 business days.

The three-day window currently in place protects would-be gun buyers from being put in a sort of gun-buying no-man’s land where the bureau could simply make them wait for a passed background check. For now, if the bureau cannot rightfully deny you on a background check, you pass by default after the three days.

Democrats of course stood on the bodies of nine dead Christians when pushing this bill and others previously by invoking the memory of those tragically murdered by deranged killer Dylan Roof in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015.

Roof fell between the cracks of the NICS system when the FBI failed to flag him and his criminal record in a timely fashion and he was cleared to buy a gun by default. Democrats call the three-day window the “Charleston Loophole.”

The FBI, nor Roof, apparently bear culpability for the massacre, so Democrats will seek retribution by burdening law-abiding gun owners instead — should that bill ultimately become law if it is passed in the Senate.

None of this is to besmirch the people working in the FBI, either. There are many wonderful rank and file personnel in the bureau who simply follow their jobs to the letter.

What happened with Roof was a rare failing in a system that is fundamentally oppressive and apparently prone to human error. But Democrats want to make that flawed system work harder against Americans.

Three business days is more than enough time for the bureau to clear or deny an individual for a gun purchase, especially in an age where the technology to find an individual’s past is right at one’s fingertips. If a private investigator such as this writer can find personal information on a subject within minutes, who knows what tools the FBI has at its disposal.

But Democrats are on a warpath to chip away act gun rights, and the American people are blessed to have a man such as Owens fighting on their behalf.

While Utahns missed the mark by electing failed former GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney to the Senate, they sent the right man for the job to the House with Owens last November.

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Johnathan Jones has worked as a reporter, an editor, and producer in radio, television and digital media.
Johnathan "Kipp" Jones has worked as an editor and producer in radio and television. He is a proud husband and father.