On the same day that the Obama administration announced it will block the importation of decades-old military surplus rifles – punishing collectors and target shooters in the process – it will not challenge the new marijuana laws in Washington and Colorado.
President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Attorney General Eric Holder might think that’s pretty good for one day’s work, but the firearms community thinks otherwise. So do some Seattle Times readers.
Alan Gottlieb, chairman of the Bellevue-based Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, issued a blistering reaction to the president’s ban on importation of military surplus M-1 Garands from South Korea. Those guns were loaned or gifted to the Korean military and some of them are more than 60 years old.
“This is an outrage,” Gottlieb said, “If there were any doubt about the level of anti-gun extremism in the Obama administration, this announcement just put those doubts to rest.”
Likewise, the Pagunblog (formerly Snowflakes in Hell) is running a headline that says “Obama issues executive orders to screw us.”
Not to worry, however, because recreational pot smokers are getting something of a free ride under a decision by the Holder Justice Department that new laws in Washington and Colorado allowing recreational marijuana use will not be challenged. But don’t think for a heartbeat that this means drug law violators, especially those with firearms, will not be prosecuted. It only means the states’ marijuana law laws will not be contested in court.
Gottlieb told Examiner that the Korean Garands, which are no longer used by the U.S. military, are not the kinds of guns that criminals want or use. He also said there is a bill in Congress that could prevent this sort of thing in the future. H.R. 2247, sponsored by Rep. Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyoming), is dubbed the “Collectible Firearms Protection Act” and right now it is languishing in both the Ways and Means, and Foreign Affairs committees. Today’s action just might jar that one loose when Congress returns from summer vacation next month.
“American gun owners can kiss goodbye any notions that they might see some moderate, reasonable movement on gun issues from this administration,” Gottlieb stated. “And Joe Biden is likely to have real trouble pandering himself as a reasonable gun owner when he decides to run for president in 2016, because gun owners will not forget his involvement in this prohibition.”
He said the Obama announcement “also sends a message to the firearms industry, and particularly importers, that this administration cannot be trusted.” At least one importer involved in what appeared to be a solid effort to get the Garands returned to these shores now appears to have taken it on the chin.
“The president is taking out his frustration for being unable to pass his gun control agenda,” Gottlieb said, “and the only people who will suffer are citizens who would never break the law with any of these firearms. Punishing innocent people may be the Chicago way, but it’s not the American way, or the way an American president ought to lead.”