For many Americans, guns are a big part of their culture and identity. However, guns are a major responsibility and thus we need to have common-sense gun safety measures, especially considering that there are already approximately 300 million firearms in the United States. Responsible gun owners should continue to enjoy the right to bear arms, subject to licensing and education requirements that will encourage the public safety.
Most Americans agree on common-sense safety requirements and restrictions on firearms. As President, I will support sensible regulation of guns that allows their continued enjoyment by responsible gun owners in a framework that promotes the overall public safety.
Problems to be Solved
- Most Americans agree that responsible gun-ownership with some restrictions is the proper policy.
- Current gun laws have been pushed in a dangerous direction by lobbying groups only looking out for the profits of gun manufacturers.
- Balance of Public Needs with Private Rights
- Create a common sense licensing policy, requiring investment and safety precautions
- Prevent dangerous individuals from owning guns
- Encourage innovation in firearm personalization and safety
- Enhance mental health resources available to people who need help
As President, I will…
- Promote a stringent, tiered licensing system for gun ownership (think a CDL vs. a regular driver’s license):
- All tiers
- Pass a federal background check, eliminating the gun show loophole.
- Tier 1 – Basic hunting rifles and handguns
- Pass a background check
- Pass a basic hunting/firearm safety class
- Provide a receipt for an appropriately-sized gun locker, or trigger lock per registered gun.
- Tier 2 – Semi-automatic rifles
- Have a Tier 1 license for at least 1 year
- Be at least 21 years of age
- Pass an advanced firearm safety class.
- Tier 3 – Advanced and automatic weaponry
- Maintain current restrictions and definitions (National Firearms Act of 1934)
- Ban high-capacity magazines
- Require submission of fingerprints and DNA to the FBI
- Submit to a gun locker inspection to ensure it can house the weapons
- Undergo yearly refresher trainings on the use of these firearms.
- Anyone with a history of violence, domestic abuse, or violent mental illness would be restricted from receiving a license.
- Those who currently own any firearms will:
- Be grandfathered in with their current license, and for the 1-year requirement if they decide to apply for a Tier 2 license
- Receive a one-time “Good Gun Owner” tax credit for adhering to the additional requirements implemented by the new system
- Be allowed a tax write-off for the purchase of any equipment required to adhere to the new standards
- Be allowed to register any currently unregistered firearm without facing any penalties.
- Individual states will determine their concealed carry/open carry laws, and reciprocity will not be federally enforced. However, a concealed or open carry license in one state would satisfy all licensure requirements in all states.
- All tiers
- Prohibit the manufacture and sale of bump stocks, suppressors, incendiary/exploding ammunition, and (yes, this is currently legal) grenade launcher attachments.
- Create federal safety guidelines for gun manufacture and distribution, similar to federal car safety requirements, with strict penalties for the violation of these guidelines.
- Encourage gun manufacturers to implement designs that prevent interchanging parts that alter the functionality of the firearm.
- Implement a federal buyback program for anyone who wants to voluntarily give up their firearm.
- Invest in innovative technology that would make firearms harder to fire for non-owners of the gun, and create a federal, bipartisan panel to determine when technological innovations are advanced and reliable enough to be included in manufacturing safety requirements.
- As stated here, invest in a more robust mental health infrastructure. This will help to identify and treat people with mental health illnesses that make them prone to violence.
- Increase funding to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, and drastically increase funding to the US Department of Veterans Affairs Suicide Prevention efforts.
- Initiate and fund mindfulness programs in schools and correctional facilities, which have been demonstrated to reduce violent behavior.
- Invest heavily in law enforcement training to de-escalate situations involving firearms.