FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Pink Pistols National Condemns tacit “Denying Gun Rights To Gays Act”, S. 374.
Philadelphia, PA (PP National), Philadelphia, PA. Upon reading certain key phrases in the Senate’s bill S. 374, entitled in short the ‘‘Fix Gun Checks Act of 2013’’, Pink Pistols National finds that this bill would function to deny members of the sexual-minority community their natural right to keep and bear arms in an unjust and unconstitutional fashion. “The United States Government,” says First Speaker Gwendolyn S. Patton, “continues to deny married members of the GLBT community via the Defense of Marriage Act. Regardless of the fact that President Obama has instructed the Justice Department not to enforce DOMA directly, indirectly, this law will prevent GLBT persons from protections enjoyed by Federally-recognized spouses.”
In S.374, certain language would treat the absence of a gun-owning gay or lesbian person’s partner for a period greater than seven days as a transfer of firearms left behind in the home. As this “transfer” is not done by a Federal Firearms Licensee with a proper background check, it would be considered to be an unlawful transfer, converting the law-abiding gay persons into instant felons. Spouses, however, are exempt from this automatic felony, since one spouse can lend or give a firearm to another without a background check. But under DOMA, the Federal government does not recognize GLBT persons legally married under State laws as spouses, therefore would still be considered illegal transferees under S.374.
The Pink Pistols filed an amicus brief in the SCOTUS case of DC v. Heller back in 2008. A key point of that brief regarded the inability at that time, for GLBT persons to serve openly in the military. The point was that, if the right to bear arms was solely the purview of a government-run militia, military service, the restriction against GLBT persons in the military would effectively deny GLBT persons their Constitutional rights. Pink Pistols National feels that the similar restrictions based upon marital status, due to DOMA blocking recognition of State-level GLBT marriages, is an unconstitutional restriction of the rights of free citizens, and exemplar of the lack of equal treatment under the law for persons in sexual minorities.
“DOMA must go,” says Patton. “That is undeniable. It is not the business of the Federal government to be dictating who may and may not marry, much less what actually constitutes a marriage. But neither is this background-check law a good idea. It is little more than a scheme to convert law-abiding citizens into criminals for the purpose of confiscating their guns and destroying their rights. S.374 should be defeated soundly for the tyranny it represents.”
Pink Pistols National condemns S.374 and urges all persons of conscience to contact their Senators and discuss this important issue. We ask our members to act as their consciences dictate with regard to speaking with those who represent them in the Federal government.
The Pink Pistols is the largest organization in the world dedicated to the idea of lawful, armed self-defense of the sexual minority community.