Right to bear arms threatened by recent legislation
Article 1, Section 24 of the Washington State Constitution states: “The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired…” Despite this, dozens of bills have been proposed in Olympia thus far that would diminish your ability to own or operate a firearm.
The goal to reduce gun violence is a noble one, and I do believe more can and should be done to keep guns out of the hands of individuals suffering from mental illness or those who are intent on causing harm. However, many of these bills are misguided, and would do little to nothing to curb gun violence. We need to remember that individuals with criminal intent do not follow laws. Therefore, making possession, concealment, or transfer illegal doesn't, in practice, mean criminal behavior will change. Most gun control measures simply add additional burden to those who already follow the law.
As a firearm owner, someone considering purchasing a firearm, or just someone concerned with government overreach, here are a few bills you should be aware of:
House Bill 1068 – This bill would make it unlawful for an individual to manufacture, possess, distribute, import, transfer, sell, or purchase a large-capacity magazine (more than 15 rounds of ammunition). Existing large-capacity magazine owners would be grandfathered in.
House Bill 1286 – Similar to House Bill 1068, House Bill 1286 would prohibit the manufacture, possession, distribution, importation, transfer, sale, or purchase of so-called “assault weapons,” as well high-capacity magazines.
House Bill 1346 – This bill would prohibit the sale and transfer of lead ammunition to persons under 21 years of age.
Rhetoric being used to describe this legislation is exceptionally deceptive. The title, “preventing lead exposure in young people,” is nothing more than an attempt to limit the rights of young adults to purchase and possess ammunition.
House Bill 1374 – This legislation would eliminate the statewide preemption of local regulations related to firearms.
If this bill were to pass and be enacted, gun laws could vary from city to city, causing confusion and logistical problems.
As your state representative, I took an oath to uphold the laws of the United States of America and the state of Washington. That includes standing up for your right to keep and bear arms. I will oppose bills that stand in the way of our constitutional rights.
I encourage anyone who has questions about these bills, or any other efforts in Olympia to strip away your lawful access to firearms, to contact me. I can be reached at (360) 786-7828 or Skyler.Rude@leg.wa.gov.
Rep. Skyler Rude, R-Walla Walla, was sworn in Jan. 14 as the newest representative for the 16th Legislative District. He serves as an assistant ranking Republican on the House Appropriations Committee, and is a member of the House College and Workforce Development, Education, and Rules committees.