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Vol. 4, No. 28 7/11/97


In response to the growing trend toward gun control around the globe, NRA-ILA, together with representatives of 21 firearms owners and industry groups from five continents, recently met in Brussels, Belgium to formally establish an international organization dedicated to preserving the shooting sports worldwide. The World Forum on the Future of Sportshooting Activities will serve as an information-sharing round table, designed to keep the world's national and international firearms groups informed on threats to sportshooting. Among the many challenges the Forum now faces are efforts by the United Nations to promote international gun control schemes as well as proposed gun bans that could put an end to the shooting sports in several nations. Members of the Forum include: the Sporting Arms and Manufacturers' Institute, Inc.; the American Shooting Sports Council; the International Practical Shooting Confederation; Safari Club International; the British Shooting Sports Council; and the Sporting Shooters' Association of Australia. Like NRA, the Forum will be applying for Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) status in order to monitor the U.N.'s anti-gun activities, as well as to speak out against these initiatives on behalf of the world's shooters.


The U.S. Senate is acting on S. 10 -- its juvenile justice bill. As you'll recall from previous faxes, this is the legislation that anti-gun Senators hope to amend by attaching "gun control" provisions. Included among the amendments that may be offered are trigger-locks and a host of proposals that may adversely affect gun owners' rights and safety. Please continue your calls to your U.S. Senators at 202/224-3121 and urge them to oppose any "gun control" amendments to S. 10. Also, please spread the word, and encourage your family, friends, and fellow gun owners to do the same.


The U.S. House Judiciary Committee has passed H.R. 1965 -- an assets forfeiture bill. This legislation contains provisions that would allow the Clinton-Gore Administration to seize the assets of virtually any business on any pretext -- including firearms-related businesses! Even if the warrant for the original seizure is struck down, the government would then be given additional time and "discovery" to examine the business records to try and build a case to continue holding the assets (read: firearms). Virtually any business that has any substantive inventory and that is extensively regulated by the government is in danger of having its goods seized -- even for non-criminal regulatory infractions. H.R. 1965 is a Clinton-Reno scheme -- and a civil rights nightmare -- and we strongly believe it will be used as a tool against gun stores, collectors, or anyone else who has a firearms collection or inventory worth stealing. We are trying to work in Congress to get the needed changes to this legislation before it is brought to the House floor, but it may be put on a fast-track to try and dampen opposition. Call your Congressman now at 202/224-3121, and explain the problems with asset forfeiture from the gun owner's perspective, and urge him to oppose the Reno-backed asset forfeiture scheme.


NEW JERSEY: Judge Joseph Rodriguez denied a motion by the State to dismiss a complaint filed by the Coalition of New Jersey Sportsmen, Armalite, Inc., and a number of other plaintiffs against the Florio gun ban. Judge Rodriguez's action allows this lawsuit to proceed. In their claim, the plaintiffs note that many otherwise law-abiding New Jersey citizens have been penalized by the law's ambiguous language. The plaintiffs note the extreme difficulty for law-abiding gun owners to determine whether a gun they own is "substantially identical" to a prohibited gun as defined by the Florio gun ban. The state has 30 days to respond to this claim, which was originally filed on June 28, 1996. This decision demonstrates not only the merit of this lawsuit, but also highlights the surprising lengths to which Governor Whitman's attorney general will go to defend the Florio gun ban.

RHODE ISLAND: Good news! Earlier this week, Rhode Island joined 21 other states by putting a law on the books protecting shooting range facilities against certain noise ordinances or nuisance actions aimed at shutting them down. A special note of thanks to the Rhode Island State Rifle and Revolver Association for marshaling the passage of this legislation.

VIRGINIA: Thanks to continued efforts by gun owners, the Fairfax County Board voted down the mandatory fingerprint requirement for all concealed handgun permit (new and renewal) applicants. On Saturday, July 19, the Arlington County Board of Supervisors is expected to consider a similar proposal. Members are encouraged to attend the public hearing, which will begin at 8:30 a.m., in County Board Room 307, located at #1 Courthouse Plaza, 2100 Clarendon Blvd., in Arlington. Those wishing to address the Board must sign up at the meeting. If you are unable to attend, you can still help by calling and leaving a message for your Supervisor at (703) 358-3130.


On Wednesday, July 16, NRA's Executive Vice President will be debating U.S. Rep. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The event will run from 1:00 - 2:00 p.m., with a luncheon preceding the debate at 12:30 p.m. (Members interesting in attending the debate are encouraged to attend the luncheon as well, as those attendees will be the ones who submit written questions to Wayne and Rep. Schumer.) C-SPAN will be covering the event, and the cost is $27.50 per person. NRA members who wish to attend should call the NRA-ILA Grassroots Division.


This information is provided as a service of the National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action, Fairfax, VA.

This and other information on the Second Amendment and the NRA is available at: http://WWW.NRA.Org