Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA) announced on her Senate website that she intends to introduce a new assault weapons ban, and this new version of the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban requires registration of all firearms in the United States that would be subject to the ban, even if they are currently legally owned today. The senator released a summary of her new proposal, which she expects to introduce in the Senate this month.
Key to the implementation of this legislation will be the work of "community monitors", who will work in tandem with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials to identify individuals who refuse to register their firearms, purchase and equip handguns with child safety locks, or to comply with the new requirements in this legislative proposal. A community monitor could be as young as an elementary school student, and would receive instructions on how to report those individuals whom they suspect of owning a banned weapon, or committing other violations of gun laws. They would also be encouraged to name gun owners publicly, in multiple forms of media, including print, broadcast, and social media outlets.
The idea for community monitors was born out of the 2008 presidential campaign, when social media began to play a significant part of American politics. The Obama campaign team leveraged much of its campaign strategy on the backs of "internet volunteers", mainly college students, who successfully used social media to create hype about the Obama election campaign, and that resulted in a landslide victory for President Obama. In the 2012 campaign, the Obama campaign took their successful "internet volunteers" program to a brand new level, by handing out Obama t-shirts to elementary school children, and encouraging older kids to promote the Obama campaign on their own Facebook and Twitter accounts. The White House is encouraged by the development of teaching guidelines from the American Bar Association on how to get kids involved in discussing gun control. These guidelines go to great lengths to get children to discuss proposals from the Violence Policy Center, a gun-control lobbying group, and how they can reduce gun violence in the U.S. Recommendations from VPC include mandatory child safety devices on all handguns in the U.S., as well as raising the age to legally purchase a firearm from 18 to 21.
The Hitler Youth played an important part in the number of Jews who were killed during Adolf Hitler's reign of terror across Europe. These school aged children were encouraged to report violations of the law, including laws passed to strip the Jewish population under German control of property and civil rights, with this encouragement taking place within the school system. There are thousands of accounts of Hitler Youth members literally pointing at persons who they "believed" were violating the law. Hitler Youth (HJ) and the League of German Girls (BDM) members were subjected to intense behavior modification techniques, created by Joseph Goebbels, Hitler's Reich Minister of Propaganda in Nazi Germany from 1933 to 1945. Weekend camping trips and after school meetings served to further supplement the in-school teaching of the necessity for Germans to support the ideals of national socialism and racial purity. Adolf Hitler once spoke of the "Young Folk" program, which is where children started down the road to indoctrination at the tender age of 10, in the greater context of the education of children for the purposes of building a loyal, patriotic class:
These boys and girls enter our organizations [at] ten years of age, and often for the first time get a little fresh air; after four years of the Young Folk they go on to the Hitler Youth, where we have them for another four years . . . And even if they are still not complete National Socialists, they go to Labor Service and are smoothed out there for another six, seven months . . . And whatever class consciousness or social status might still be left . . . the Wehrmacht [German armed forces] will take care of that. - Adolf Hitler (1938)
This new "community monitors" program is eerily similar to programs that have been used in the past, in the American school system, to report on parents who use illegal drugs, alcohol, or who might own a firearm. The "guns are bad" approach, used by the National Education Association, was "doubled down" on by NEA president Dennis Van Roekel, when he announced that the nation's largest organization of public school teachers would be supporting the "Demand A Plan To End Gun Violence Campaign", sponsored by Mayors Against Illegal Guns.
It appears that this "community monitors" program has already been launched by the Obama administration and their supporters, all with a wink and nod from no other than President Obama himself. The President made it clear that he is all for new restrictions on gun ownership when he spoke about the need for new gun control laws in comments he made during his announcement that Vice President Joe Biden would be leading his administration's effort to impose new gun control measures. Obama said, "This is not something where folks are going to be studying the issue for six months and publishing a report that gets read and then pushed aside. This is a team that has a very specific task to pull together real reforms right now". The President also said that the team would look at improved access to mental health services, as well as addressing cultural problems that are systemic in nature. Obama said that the team will also make specific recommendations to reform a "culture that, all too often, glorifies guns and violence".
Lawmakers in Connecticut have introduced legislation that would remove that state's current prohibition on the public release of the names and addresses of gun owners in the state. Hundreds of legal handgun owners in New York's Westchester and Rockland counties were stunned when The Journal News, a local newspaper, published multiple interactive maps detailing the names and addresses of those licensed to carry handguns in New York State. The information was gathered through legal public records information requests, and signals that gun control activists are prepared to use the "SA" intimidation tactics of Nazi Germany if they have to, in order to "shame" gun owners into no longer owning a gun.
The President has stated that he believes that the right to own guns in America is a "negotiable right", one that can be changed as the government deems necessary in order to protect the public. This is extremely distant from the position of the National Rifle Association, which is that Americans have an inherent right to own guns for any reason, in accordance with the provisions of the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Whether or not a new assault weapons ban becomes the law of the land has yet to be seen. However, can it be very long before you might see an interactive map of lawful gun owners published in your own hometown newspaper? If gun-control activists have their way, how long will it be before the first child comes home from school with a new assignment to complete, starting the process off by asking his mother:
"Mommy, how many guns do we have?"