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January 28, 2009

How NSSF Puts Its Members And Gun Owners On The Alert


Let's talk a little about the "protect" part of NSSF's mission to "Promote, Protect and Preserve" the shooting sports–all the shooting sports.

Whenever legislation is introduced at the local, state or federal level that can negatively or positively impact the sale, ownership or use of firearms, NSSF helps educate its membership about the legislation and encourages action (e-mailing or calling a legislator, for example) by issuing what we call an "NSSF Legislative Alert." In addition to notifying our members, individuals who care about their Second Amendment rights can also sign up to receive these e-mailed alerts. And many do, particularly because they are interested in tracking legislation that happens in their state capitols; they know that NSSF's high-alert system can be relied on to get them the information quickly–in some cases, as soon as the bill is introduced.

Here's an example of an NSSF Legislative Alert in response to U.S. Representative Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) sponsoring the Blair Holt's Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act: 

Oppose HR 45 – Blair Holt's Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act
Legislation (H.R. 45 "Blair Holt's Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act") sponsored by U.S. Representative Bobby Rush (D-Ill.). 

Legislation (H.R. 45 "Blair Holt's Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act"), sponsored by U.S. Representative Bobby Rush (D-Ill.), would mandate numerous gun control measures if passed.

The bill specifically calls for all handgun owners to submit to the federal government a formal application including:  photo identification, fingerprints, medical and mental health records and a completed written firearm safety examine.  Applicants would also be forced to pay a fee to the federal government. 

The legislation also mandates that a database be established and kept by the attorney general of the United State so as to record every sale and transfer of a firearm.

Additionally, the bill would make it illegal for a licensed gun owner to fail to record a firearm loss or theft within 72 hours, or fail to report a change of address within 60 days.  Further, if a minor obtains a firearm (even from stealing it) and injures someone with it, the owner of the firearm may face a multiple-year jail sentence.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation is vigorously opposing this legislation and is monitoring the bill closely.

Please visit the NSSF Legislative Action Center for updates on HR 45 and other firearm related legislation.

The NSSF Legislative Alert provides links to an NSSF-sponsored Web site that makes it easy to send a letter to your legislator urging a position on the bill (opposition, clearly, in the case above), and allowing you to either e-mail the letter or print it so you can have the Post Office deliver it.

NSSF Legislative Alerts is a strength-in-numbers effort; in other words, our alerts are only as powerful as the list of individuals in our database who receive them. Right now, that number is in the tens of thousands, but we wish it were millions. If you would like to keep track of legislation that might impact your rights as a gun owner, hunter and shooting sports enthusiast, you can sign up for NSSF's Legislative Alerts. The list is sacrosanct; we don't make it available to any one or any group outside of NSSF.

We all need to challenge those legislators who would introduce inaccurate and potentially damaging legislation, as well as show our support for those lawmakers who show their support for Second Amendment rights, the shooting sports and the firearms industry.