Tell your members of Congress to support bills that would close the “boyfriend loophole,” which allows stalkers and domestic abusers to buy firearms because they are not married to their victims.
The dangers of the boyfriend loophole are stark and well-known. While married domestic abusers, and those under a restraining order for spousal abuse, are generally barred from gun ownership, no specific laws protect those in relationships outside of marriage, and no specific laws prevent stalkers from owning guns.
According to Everytown for Gun Safety, an independent nonpartisan organization that studies gun violence in America, if there’s a gun available in a domestic violence situation, the chances that a woman will be shot and killed are five times higher.
Congress introduced bills in both chambers in the middle of last year to address the problem. Both are named the ‘Protecting Domestic Violence and Stalking Victims Act of 2017’.
If passed, the law would bar convicted stalkers and abusive dating partners from buying and owning guns.
Anthony Brown, a Democrat from Maryland’s 4th District, sponsored the house version, H.R. 2670. Amy Klobuchar, a Democratic Senator from Minnesota, sponsored S. 1539.
Neither version has advanced since they were introduced. The Skopos Labs rating for each on their GovTrack pages are low–four percent for the House bill and seven percent for the Senate bill.
Sample script: “Dear [Senator/House Rep Lastname,] I am [Firstname Lastname from town, state]. I am calling to ask you to support [S.1539/H.R. 2670], the Protecting Domestic Violence and Stalking Victims Act of 2017. We know that domestic abusers are more likely to use guns to kill the people they claim to love. Our gun laws inadvertently have what’s been called a “boyfriend loophole” — abusers who are not married to their partners can buy and own guns, and convicted stalkers can, too. These bills would outlaw gun ownership and gun purchases by these two groups of people. Measures like these will save lives. Please support the version of the bill that’s in your chamber. Thank you.”
See the GovTrack page for H.R. 2670:
See the GovTrack page for S. 1539:
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A note: We at OTYCD intend to nurture and encourage the movement sparked by the Margory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting by devoting one post at least every other week to gun safety-related issues.
The reason that the NRA has a death grip on Congress, and in particular, GOP Congressfolk, is that NRA members get off their asses and call if there’s a whisper of a muttering of a hint that a law might pass that could impose even the slightest imposition on ownership of guns in America.
That’s what the politicians are afraid of. It’s not just that some of them get metric buttloads of money for their campaigns from the NRA. Those who embrace the NRA’s outlook pounce on their phones and berate their representatives the instant they think their beloved guns are under threat.
So, yes, it’s on us to shout back.
We have to adopt the tactics of those who support the NRA.
We have to call our representatives often to make it damn clear that the status quo is unacceptable, and we want common-sense gun safety laws.
OTYCD will start out with one weekday post every two weeks, at minimum, that has to do with improving gun safety and pushing back against the NRA.
We do this in honor of the Parkland victims, and all victims of mass shootings in America, and everyone who has been fighting to change our laws on firearms all along.
If Trump finally bows to the will of Congress and imposes the sanctions against Russia for messing with the 2016 election, we will switch to devoting one post per week to these issues.
Honor the victims of the Parkland shooting, and all other shootings, by stepping up and calling your reps about common-sense gun safety laws, and by supporting politicians who have low grades from the NRA, and voting out those who do the NRA’s bidding.
#NeverAgain. For the love of all that is right and good, Never Again.