Universal Life Church Case Law
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Gun Law Changes Since Sandy Hook

January 13th, 2015

Over two years ago Universal Life Church asked for its ministry to support changes in state and federal law gun legislation in the wake of the tragedy in Aurora, Colorado where a gunman at a local theater killed 12 and injured 70 others.  Shortly after the shooting at Aurora the country itself grieving for the children, teachers, and families of Sandy Hook Elementary School where 20 children and six adults were killed.  Universal Life Church Case Law now takes a look at the changes in gun laws since the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Federal Laws

In 2013, a Federal Assault Weapons Ban was introduced to Congress, but did not pass the Senate.  The assault weapons ban would have amended the federal criminal code to ban the import, sale, manufacture transfer, or possession of many types of semiautomatic assault weapons.


State Laws

After Sandy Hook, the country saw a drastic loosening of gun restrictions on a state level, instead of the tightening of gun restrictions.  Many states passed laws supporting the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution right to bear arms rather than restricting access to firearms in the aftermath of Sandy Hook.

One area where many states tightened their restrictions on gun possession was in the area of mental health.  Alabama, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington all implemented laws that restricted the access to firearms for mental health issues.   Another area where several states tightened their gun restrictions is on the background checks required in the sale of firearms and ammunition.  California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Misso uri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, and North Dakota all tightened their procedures and laws related to background checks.   Gun access laws were also tightened in some states.  California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Utah, and Washington restricted gun access in areas such as mandatory gun safe usage, restricting the possession of firearms by domestic violence offenders and persons with restraining orders adjudicated against them, the possession of ammunition by minors, and many other areas.  Another area that saw some tightening of gun restrictions is that of lost or stolen firearms.  California, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island tightened their laws related to lost or stolen firearms.

Although the federal assault weapons ban failed to pass Congress, some states had better luck in passing assault weapon restrictions.  California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, and New York all tightened their assault weapon laws.

Several areas related to gun laws saw a loosening of gun restrictions across the country.  Many states loosened their restrictions to firearms in the areas of gun permits and public carry laws.  Ironically, in the aftermath of Sandy Hook, many states loosened their restrictions to firearms in schools supported by the argument that access to guns by school officials would protect children from another Sandy Hook situation.

Firearm legislation did not take the turn that many American’s foresaw after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School.  The Universal Life Church continues to encourage its ministry to use their positions to support tighter restrictions to gun access and use.

Photo Credit: BLGphoto via Compfight cc

One Comment

  1. Rev John J RymanIV says:

    I for one do not support ULC pushing for tighter restrictions. I am retired LEO and a CCW permit holder as well as HR 218 holder. Take a look at Australia, England and Nazi Germany, once the gun owners are on file, confiscation is only a step away, now a days with the Terrorists around, do you really want to be unable to defend yourself or your family? Wake up and smell the coffee!

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