Do Democrats understand and know the issues when they propose and pass laws? The answer is NO. Democrats do not listen to facts or their constituents. Democrats only know what their special interest BIG donors tell them to do.
NO ONE will argue that firearms should never be in the WRONG hands. But, at the same time we must keep guns in the RIGHT hands. We already have background checks and laws that are supposed to keep firearms out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill. If these laws already exist, how do criminals and the mentally ill get guns in the first place? Enforcing these already existing laws must be the first focus and priority before any new laws are passed. The way this Red Flag Bill is drafted, is unconstitutional violating the 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th,14th Amendments of the US Constitution, Articles I & IV of the Virginia Constitution and is in conflict with several Virginia Statutes. Why are Democrats trying to pass more new laws against law abiding citizens; when at the same time democrats are repealing laws to favor criminals?
Don’t the mentally ill have the same Constitutional Rights as everyone else? Isn’t that why we have the Americans with Disabilities Act? In fact, if the mentally ill are singled out and discriminated against by Red Flag laws, doesn’t the American with Disabilities Act require accommodations by the government before firearms are seized? Shouldn’t the mentally ill be accommodated and better served with mental health treatment? I raise these issues as a matter of the law and to mock ignorant Democrats. They are too incompetent to realize that when they stomp on one Constitutional Right, they invariably violate many more Constitutional Rights at the same time. It’s the domino effect of Democrat law breaking.
Let’s not be fooled, Virginia “Red Flag” Legislation, like all the other democrat gun bills are an ILLEGAL gun grab. In addition, Red Flag legislation is DANGEROUS. Never in America should a law abiding citizen be stripped of their right to protect themselves without due process. In Maryland, a state with a Red Flag law, its government claims that Red Flag laws are necessary to prevent an innocent person from harming himself and others. However, in November 2018 an innocent man was approached by Maryland law enforcement demanding the innocent man turnover his LEGAL gun to law enforcement. Like many other law abiding strict constitutionalists, he refused. When the innocent citizen refused, the police shot him. But wait. This law was supposed to protect people from harming themselves and others. Yet, the opposite occurred. Law abiding Innocent people are being shot and killed by the government. Isn’t that why we have the 2nd Amendment? So that law abiding citizens can protect themselves from a tyrannical government? Damn right.
In these Red Flag law instances, government must be Red Flagged and government’s guns must be taken away from the government before government harms themselves and others. If there are going to be Red Flag laws, then Red Flag laws must work both ways. Here is why. The Maryland Red Flag Law caused a death that would NOT have occurred, but for the same proposed Virginia law that is supposed to prevent a death. This is government tyranny, plain and simple. If a person is an imminent threat to himself or others, get a warrant, or detain him until things get figured out; but never steal a person’s property without due process. Especially, the very property that is protected by the 2nd Amendment for the exact purpose the 2nd Amendment exists, for citizens to protect themselves from government tyranny. See the confound & irony?
Currently, these are the Red Flag Law states.
Virginia has 340 firearm homicides, 1,100 suicides (550 by firearm), and 1,300 drug overdoses per year. There are more drug overdoses than firearm homicides and suicides. What are the Democrats doing about those drug overdoses that outnumber firearm and suicide deaths? Illegal drugs? Drug trafficking and distribution? Eliminating the major drug source at our Southern Border? The answer is Democrats are LEGALLIZING more drugs, letting drug offenders out on the streets earlier, repealing drug laws and not enforcing drug laws.
Virginia is the 4th safest firearm state, 36th least likely suicide state, and 31st on the list for depression. Compared to other states, with or without red flag laws, Virginia is doing well.. So, why are Red Flag laws a major issue for Democrats? Answer is FALSE flag fear mongering and another path towards gun confiscation, control, and power. Without firearms, innocent law abiding citizens are defenseless.
Red Flag laws must never be enacted in Virginia. The law is dangerous and unconstitutional. The way the current Democrat Bill is written violates basic Constitutional due process rights. On the other hand, a reasonable Constitutional Bill could have merit, in ONLY extreme cases with Constitutional due process. We already agree that guns should NEVER get into the “wrong hands”. Then, why at the same time, are Democrats proposing Red Flag laws while also legislating no bail to criminals, shorter sentences for convicted violent criminals, open borders for illegal criminal aliens, and enabling, aiding and abetting those same criminals in democrat sanctuary cities. There is NO logic to these democrat actions if they are truly seeking to reduce gun crime.
At the same time Democrats are encouraging the mentally ill to live in the streets with no treatment, Democrats are passing out free needles for heroin use, and wanting to legalize addictive psychotic drugs. How do these Democrat laws prevent people from harming themselves and others. They don’t. Once again, the answer is NOT to pass Red Flag gun control laws. The answer is mandatory treatment of the mentally ill who are dangers to themselves and others. It is already noted that in Connecticut where Red Flag laws were enacted, firearm suicides went down at the same time as non-firearm suicides went up. It was a wash. In the end suicide rates did not go down with Red Flag Laws. The mentally ill simply chose a different method of suicide than firearms. It is obvious that the answer to metal illness is treatment, not firearm bans.
Here are several important suicide facts. Half of all suicides are by firearm; followed by suffocation, poisoning, and other methods. Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in America; second among 10-34 year-olds and fourth among 35-54 year-olds. 48,000 Americans died by suicide. There were about 1.4 million suicide attempts last year, and 15.4 million suicide ideations. It is important to note that ONLY 200,000 of all the suicides, attempts, and ideation NEVER planned a suicide. The suicide rate has increased 31% in the last 18 years from 1999 to 2017. Suicide has a $69 billion dollar economic cost to America. Men are 3.5 times more likely to commit suicide than women. However, women are 1.5 times more likely to attempt suicide than men. As it turns out, men are better at suicide than women. White men are 70% of suicide victims. The highest suicide age related rate is among 45 to 54 year-olds. There are about 129 suicides per day, 5 suicides per hour, and one suicide every 12.8 minutes in the United States. How can this be acceptable in the greatest country in the world?
Given all this data the most important three questions that must be answered with respect to firearm possession are— What is the most common method of suicide attempts? What are the leading causes that drive people to want to attempt suicide? What is the suicide attempt rate among firearm owners versus non-firearm owners? These are the three most important issues when discussing the proposal of “Red Flag” laws. The answers are POISONING, not guns; More suicide attempts are by NON-GUN OWNERS; and the leading cause of suicide is MENTAL ILLNESS, not guns. It is apparent that Red Flag laws are NOT the answer. Access to mental health treatment is the answer.
Over 75% of suicide victims tested positive and had a history of drug and/or alcohol addiction; 33.4% of suicide decedents tested positive for alcohol, 23.8% for antidepressants, and 20.0% for opiates, including heroin and prescription pain killers. Individuals with a history of non-fatal suicide attempt are more likely to die by suicide via poisoning rather than firearm. “The question then follows: Are suicide attempters later dying by suicide using less lethal methods, such as poisoning, or are they escalating to more lethal methods like firearm or hanging? The highest proportion of non-fatal suicide attempts was by poisoning, which also was the most common method used subsequent suicide attempts and death.
With 1.4 million suicide attempts per year, it is apparent that mental illness, drug or alcohol addiction, and “poisoning” are the major culprits involving the overall suicide issue, not firearms. 20% of Americans have a mental illness, less than half received mental health treatment. 60% of U.S. counties do NOT have a practicing psychiatrist. “Across the U.S. economy, serious mental illness causes $193 billion in lost earnings each year. 20% of people experiencing homelessness in the U.S. have a serious mental health condition. 37% of adults incarcerated in the state and federal prison systems have a diagnosed mental illness. 70% of youth in the juvenile justice system have a diagnosed mental illness. 40% of Veteran’s Health Administration patients have a diagnosed mental illness or substance abuse disorder. 46% of people who die by suicide had a diagnosed mental health condition. 25 million Americans suffer from depression each year. Over 50 percent of all people who die by suicide suffer from major depression. If alcoholics who are depressed are included, this figure rises to over 75 percent. Depression is among the most treatable of psychiatric illnesses. One in every five Americans are on at least one anti-psychotic medication. Between 80 percent and 90 percent of people with depression respond positively to treatment, and almost all patients gain some relief from their symptoms. But first, depression has to be recognized. 90% of people who die by suicide had shown symptoms of a mental health condition, according to interviews with family, friends and medical professionals (also known as psychological autopsy)” Looking at these statistics, Red Flag laws are NOT an answer Mental health treatment for those in need and mental health access for all Americans is the answer. We have a MENTAL HEALTH EMERGENCY in America. We must act IMMEDIATELY with mental health treatment.
These numbers are staggering. The use of firearms are merely the suicide end result. But, government recklessness is the leading cause of mental illness. Government’s non-treatment of mental illness is the causation of people harming themselves and others. Studies find little evidence that firearm access or storage practices are associated with suicidality among household members. There is NO causal relationship between household gun ownership and suicide. Going after firearms is a government copout and cover-up for the REAL underlying mental health problems in America.
What is the government doing about the 1.4 million suicide survivors before their next suicide attempt? What is government doing about those 55% who need mental illness treatment and don’t receive it? What is the government doing about the 60% of American counties who don’t have a psychiatrist? What is the government doing about the mentally ill homeless who live in the streets? What is the government doing about the mentally ill veterans who are not receiving treatment? There is so much that the government can do and has a duty to do; rather than considering passing “Red Flag” laws that will be of NO consequence or help, other than violate the Constitution. A Red Flag law will NOT improve anyone’s mental health. For example, is the answer to eliminating arson to raise arsonists, but ban matches? Like confiscating weapons, is the answer to find 1.4 million people who will attempt suicide each year and red flag them from cars, bridges, prescription medications, household cleaners? Of course not. Why not Democrats? Isn’t taking away all these other materials that could also do harm to “themselves and others” the same line of reasoning as unlawfully taking away guns? We ALWAYS need to prevent the causes of the problem FIRST, in order to PREVENT future resulting bad manifestations and symptoms. In this instance, we need to prevent mental illness before suicides and homicides are committed. This is the way government is meant to work.