Howard Delo

I am always amazed at how fast the outdoors can change in a short time. In a little over a week, we have gone from snow covered to bare ground, albeit, saturated ground! With another week or so of this sunshine and light winds, the ground should have dried up enough that I can drive my truck back to the storage building on the back half of the lot.

I’m seeing where the rivers are opening, along with the lakes, and a few boats are being towed to various locations. Most of the boats I’ve seen are saltwater boats, but the river and lake boats will be appearing shortly. Spring is here and it’s time to check boats, trailers, and fishing gear in preparation for the coming season.

Things are starting to open up after the COVID-19 lockdown and various federal aid packages are working their way into the economy. The liberal Democrats are, once again, trying to load up these aid programs with a laundry list of items from their agenda. One of the scary add-ons involves various gun control requirements the Left has wanted for years. Do a little research online to get the specifics and contact your US senators and our US representative and ask them to not support any gun control add-ons in these relief packages.

After all, aren’t the federal relief packages supposed to bring help to folks and not involve totally unrelated legislation to achieve some long-sought agenda of one political faction?

I generally try not to comment on politics in this column. However, some things which would have a major influence on our enjoyment of the Alaskan outdoors require discussion. I got this information directly from probable Democratic candidate Joe Biden’s website and it should cause you to sit up and take notice.

Biden has posted his plans for gun control reforms under the title of “The Biden Plan to End Our Gun Violence Epidemic.” If Joe Biden is elected President this fall, some of what he proposes to do involves ending the online sale of firearms and ammunition. This would directly impact my ability as a federal firearms licensee to order firearms for my customers plus make things much more difficult for the average person in Alaska to get a firearm. All online interstate sales of firearms (which is virtually all online purchases in Alaska) already must go through a federally licensed dealer for transfer, which involves a background check.

The Democratic presidential hopeful wants to reinstate the Obama-Biden policy to keep guns out of the hands of certain people unable to manage their affairs for mental reasons, primarily personal financial management concerns. This would impact many veterans living in Alaska who suffered injuries from fighting in war. These folks don’t deserve to lose their Second Amendment rights because of injuries received when fighting to protect those rights!

Biden would ban the manufacture of, so-called, assault weapons and regulate existing firearms under the National Firearms Act. This act was passed back in the 1930’s to regulate the ownership of, among other things, machine guns. The AR-15 rifle platform is currently the most popular rifle type in America. It functions similarly to a Ruger 10-22 rimfire rifle – one trigger pull gives one shot. What’s next, having that same Ruger rimfire declared a machine gun?

If you’re in an accident where you had been drinking and driving a little recklessly, is this the fault of either the vehicle you were operating or the alcohol product you drank? Of course not! But Biden wants to hold gun manufacturers responsible for the misuse of their product.

Biden wants states to set up gun ownership licensing programs. Imagine you want to go hunting. Have you obtained your hunting license? How about your gun license? Driving and hunting are privileges which can be licensed. Firearms ownership is a right which doesn’t require government permission.

He wants to require background checks on all firearms transfers. This means you can’t loan a shotgun to your neighbor who wants to go bird hunting with you or even give a family heirloom to your grandson without a background check. If that requirement is enacted, it would overload the current background check system to the point where any gun transfer could become lengthy or even impossible.

The list goes on. Many of these proposed items are already in statute. “Straw” purchases are already illegal under federal law. Most states already have some sort of “safe storage” requirements.

This program has so many misstatements and misguided intentions.

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