Operation Choke Point strangling gun dealers at banks

Banned from financial services that are essential to running a business, firearms sellers attending the world’s largest gun exhibition last week in Las Vegas spoke out against the government’s controversial program known as Operation Choke Point.

“We continue to hear from dealers and others in our industry that suddenly, out of the blue, they have been cut off by financial services or credit card processors or banks,” said Larry Keane, Senior Vice President of the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

We continue to hear from dealers and others in our industry that suddenly, out of the blue, they have been cut off by financial services.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation, which exists to protect and preserve hunting and the shooting sports industry, is conducting a phone survey of over 7,000 of its members to determine the extent to which Operation Choke Point is affecting their industry. He said:

“This is a direct result of the Department of Justice initiative, through the [Federal Depositors Insurance Corporation], to pressure financial institutions to stop doing business with legitimate law-abiding federally-licensed firearms dealers.”

As The Daily Signal previously reported, gun sellers allege that they are being explicitly prohibited from using payment systems such as PayPal and Square to process credit card transactions.

By Kelsey Harkness – The Daily Signal –

BATFE Ruling Creates New Hurdle For Gun Makers

It only took two days before the anti-gun American bureaucracy began chipping away at the Second Amendment in areas where Congress and the President, despite being backed by billion dollar NGOs and Foundations, have so far been unsuccessful.

On January 2, 2015, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE) issued its ruling regarding “whether Federal Firearms Licensees (FFL), or unlicensed machine shops, may engage in the business of completing, or assisting in the completion of, the manufacture of firearm frames or receivers for unlicensed individuals without being licensed as a manufacturer of firearms.”

The ruling that was made in order to address the issue that ATF Ruling 2015-1 has called into question – whether or not the ability of American citizens to produce their own weapons, pass them down, and modify those weapons in specific capacities will remain a viable option.

Thankfully, the BATFE is not attempting to entirely eliminate the ability of individuals to manufacture their own weapons, but the agency is attempting to limit that ability.

So far, the policy of the BATFE’s Firearms Technology Branch (now called the Firearms Technology Industry Services Branch) as it was enumerated in 2010 remains the same. The BATFE states that “For your information, per the provisions of the GCA, an unlicensed individual may make a ‘firearm’ as defined in the GCA for his own personal use, but not for sale or distribution.” The FTB continued by stating “Also, based on the GCA, manufacturers’ marks of identification are not required on firearms that are produced by individuals for personal use.

Prince Law Offices analyzed the policy statement and concluded that “it is completely lawful, as acknowledged by ATF, for one to manufacture his/her/its own firearm, provided there is no intent to sell or distribute it.” However, the lawyers’ blog also asked another pertinent question, “but what about when that individual is incapable of turning a block of metal or 80% lower into a functioning firearm?

By Brandon Turbeville – Activist Post –

Arrest Me! I Will NOT Comply!

A mass protest will take place once the law is certified, daring authorities to enforce the law as more than 5,600 gun owners have pledged to pass firearms to one another in a mass demonstration to show the absurdity of the law, which now classifies such hand-offs as felony gun crimes.

This is practically unheard of in the modern era; not only will 5,500 people deliberately violate the law through civil disobedience, but will violate felony gun laws. Washington is one of few remaining blue states that has remained friendly to gun owners, and so gun owners are furious that a handful of billionaires were able to come in and buy the election, contributing about half the $10 million poured into the race to support I-594, almost 10 times as much as the opposition. Unsuccessful at getting the legislature to pass the law, gun control proponents resorted to billionaires to push it through instead as an initiative. Their money provided the resources to afford to run continuous misleading ads on TV.

The Facebook page for “I-594 I Will Not Comply” states, “We will rally at the capitol, openly exchange guns, unveil and plan to break apart the entire legislation and violate I-594 in every possible way … We will buy and sell guns from whom we please, we will not submit to background checks, we will not give up our rights, WE WILL NOT comply.”

Under I-594, transferring a gun to someone in most situations – such as loaning your gun to a family member or friend at the range – will constitute a felony. Most gun owners have transferred their gun at one point to a friend or relative to try shooting. One-third of Washington state residents are gun owners. Considering the population of Washington is about 7 million, that means as many as 2.3 million gun owners could now be felons for doing what they have commonly done in the past.

Colorado, Connecticut, and New York have likewise passed blatantly unconstitutional gun laws in the past year, which has resulted in mass non-compliance, with less than 10% of gun owners registering their firearms and magazines in Connecticut and New York, and with Colorado residents simply ignoring laws on purchasing standard capacity magazines and mandated “universal” background checks.

By Bob Owens – BearingArms.com –

Americans Just Dodged a Bullet on the United Nation’s Worldwide Gun Control Bill

From TheRightToBear.com –

There was an historic vote on gun control this week, and a lot of Americans missed it. The vote wasn’t on a federal or state, or even a local law. It was a vote on whether the United States would enter into the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty, and the outcome was close. Ultimately the United States Senate voted 53-46 in favor of a bill of opposition to the treaty.

U.N. Resolution 2117 includes 21 points related to the control of firearms, but the item of most importance to Americans who hold sacred the 2nd Amendment of our Constitution is point number 11. It “Calls for member states to support weapons collection and disarmament of all UN countries.”

As the Maine Republic Email Alert wrote, “This is that brief, glorious moment in history when everyone stands around…reloading.”

The United Nations Small Arms Treaty had been pushed by the Obama administration, and it would have placed a worldwide ban on the import and export of small firearms. Every private gun owner in the country would have been affected. Even more extreme, language in the treaty mandated an international gun registry on all private guns and ammunition.

….Not a single Republican voted against the bill.

 
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Can We Fight Police Brutality With “Massive Servility”? (gun rights)

By Jack – LibertySetSquare.com –

On August 29th, 2014 Trevor Lyman posted this video essay on LibertyCrier.com: Is It Time to Open Carry at Protests?

Lyman is not the first person to suggest that peaceful protesters can deter abusive police tactics by carrying firearms openly. But his “Massive Open Carry” strategy was first proposed not a month before the Ferguson, Missouri protests, so the topic is controversial all over again.

There should be no argument that the police response to initially peaceful protests in Ferguson was despicable and immoral. People who failed to desist in “unlawful assembly” as well as journalists covering the events, were arrested. There were countless incidents of protesters and journalists being attacked with rubber bullets, flashbang and CS grenades and the increasingly popular (with the police, that is) “LRAD.” Journalists were even threatened with death at gunpoint by one particularly insane police officer who seemed to think he was Judge Dredd.

Police assaults against those attempting to exercise their rights as espoused in the 1st Amendment have only grown more common over the years. As Lyman observes, since the crackdown on the Occupy protests, we have typically witnessed demonstrations and protests from the “left” of the political spectrum subjected to assault, whereas mass assemblies from the “right” have proceeded relatively unmolested. Lyman asserts that this is largely due to the fact that the unmolested protesters often carried firearms.

From Lyman’s piece:

“If you compare the Occupy Now and other liberal protests to the Tea Party protests you’ll notice that one group suffers at the hands of the police state while the other does not.

While there are other differences, I believe one of the main differences is that the tea party protesters bring guns to their protests and that is why they do not suffer as much at the hands of the police state.

I believe that both the left and the right should, always, open carry at protests.”
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Can any of us argue the with the reasoning?

During the actual moment crowd dispersal operations begin, authorities are already beyond the point of debating the decision to bust up a gathering of the people. Logically, the next best deterrent against violation of the right to assemble is to get the police to weigh the risks they incur by choosing to use violence.

“Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks.” – Thomas Jefferson

Oddly enough, I have seen quite a few people over the years who are very convinced that open carry of firearms during a protest is going to cause all sorts of problems. Every time I have seen this idea put forward, tons of people come out of the woodwork warning the rest of us of the doom that awaits, or at the very least, how it “won’t make any difference.”

What is even more odd is that most of these people preface their statements with a disclaimer, where they make clear that they “believe in the 2nd Amendment,” or they “support people who bear arms,” BUT…when it comes to protests, they don’t see it as a good idea.

Allow me to list what I have found to be the four most oft-repeated objections and nitpicks, followed by refutation:
1.Open carry will make police more likely to use force.
2.Open carry will increase the risk of agents provocateurs.
3.Carrying firearms to a protest makes the protesters look “crazy.”
4.Carrying firearms to a protest is maybe a good idea, but it should only be done in a concealed manner. Carrying anything other than a concealed pistol is over the top.

 
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