Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) has introduced legislation to stop President Barack Obama from imposing a stealthy gun ban on an estimated 75,000 Social Security beneficiaries.
Breitbart News previously reported last July that Obama’s gun ban would hit Social Security beneficiaries who are labeled as having “mental health” issues. That category is so broad that it includes people who need help to handle personal finances.
Obama added this gun ban into the executive gun controls he announced in January.
The White House explained that the Social Security Administration would execute the ban by reporting beneficiaries with a “mental health issue” to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). This, in turn, would bar them from purchasing a gun.
The reporting would happen “in consultation with the Department of Justice” and would “cover appropriate records of the approximately 75,000 people each year who have a documented mental health issue, receive disability benefits, and are unable to manage those benefits because of their mental impairment.”
Senator Paul has now introduced legislation to shield beneficiaries from losing gun rights simply because they need help balancing a checkbook.
Paul’s legislation–Protecting Gun Rights and Due Process Act–explicitly “prevents the Social Security Administrator from reporting individuals to NICS unless [that] individual has been adjudicated as mentally incompetent.”
In other words, it makes a finding of mental incompetence the result of a process rather than a proclamation. This protects the due process rights of each individual who might otherwise have simply been proclaimed mentally incompetent.
Moreover, even after the proper process has been followed, Paul’s bill requires the Attorney General to certify each adjudication–which is one more way of taking pains to ensure the protection of individual rights. And once an adjudication is lifted or absolved, rights are restored to the individual.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.