Allen: Q1 would put more gun restrictions on law-abiding Nevadans


http://www.rgj.com/story/opinion/voices/2016/06/21/allen-question-1-would-mean-more-gun-restrictions-law-abiding-nevadans/86168552/

As sheriff of Washoe County, I am committed to doing everything in my power to protect your families, your property and your community. I am equally committed to protecting your rights and freedoms as citizens of Nevada and the United States. One of my fundamental principles and promises to the citizens of this county is not to support any legislation that would infringe upon or restrict our Second Amendment rights.

In that light, I would like to express my concerns about Gun Control Question 1, which is on the ballot for November’s election. Largely bought and paid for by billionaire gun control advocate Michael Bloomberg, I believe Question 1 will do absolutely nothing to stop criminals while criminalizing the commonplace activities of many Nevada gun owners.

Armed with the facts, I am convinced Nevadans will defeat this anti-freedom measure.

If Question 1 passes, Nevada’s gun control laws on private transfers will be even more restrictive than the outrageous laws in California. The measure would force anyone who shares, loans or sells a firearm to a friend, or in some cases even a relative, to go through multiple government background checks, paying fees each time. If you don’t jump through all the government mandates, you could face up to a year in jail and a fine of $2,000. A second offense, and you could be a felon facing up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

All the while, actual criminals are free to go about their criminal business, because they will simply ignore the law.

Speaking as a member of law enforcement, I can tell you that if Question 1 passes, it will tax already scarce law enforcement resources without doing anything to make the public any safer.

Law enforcement would be required to investigate law-abiding Nevadans for many commonplace practices they do now. The initiative increases red tape, making it harder for law-abiding Nevadans to defend themselves.

Other states have tried to keep guns out of the hands of criminals by passing laws requiring criminal background checks on private transfers. The results from these states have been underwhelming. Reports out of Colorado and Connecticut have done more to create bureaucratic headaches and issues with noncompliance than increasing public safety.

Renewed calls in Congress for gun bans and more gun control following the Orlando terrorist attack will do nothing to make us any safer if they are based solely on emotion instead of effectiveness. These measures may only make it harder for law-abiding Americans to defend themselves.

Criminals will go around the laws. They always have and they always will.

I ask that you not be fooled by Bloomberg’s gun control groups in Nevada. Question 1 will not make us any safer and will do nothing to address violent crime. Question 1 is simply increased gun control on already law-abiding citizens.

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