1 year, 10 months ago
Even as news reports have been highlighting the gun control provisions of the Administration’s “Unified Agenda” of regulatory objectives (see accompanying story), the Obama State Department has been quietly moving ahead with a proposal that could censor online speech related to firearms. This latest regulatory assault, published in the June 3 issue of the Federal Register, is as much an affront to the First Amendment as it is to the Second. Your action is urgently needed to ensure that online blogs, videos, and web forums devoted to the technical aspects of firearms and ammunition do not become subject to prior review by State Department bureaucrats before they can be published.
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With the new proposal published on June 3, the State Department claims to be “clarifying” the rules concerning “technical data” posted online or otherwise “released” into the “public domain.” To the contrary, however, the proposal would institute a massive new prior restraint on free speech. This is because all such releases would require the “authorization” of the government before they occurred. The cumbersome and time-consuming process of obtaining such authorizations, moreover, would make online communication about certain technical aspects of firearms and ammunition essentially impossible.
[ … ]Gunsmiths, manufacturers, reloaders, and do-it-yourselfers could all find themselves muzzled under the rule and unable to distribute or obtain the information they rely on to conduct these activities. Prior restraints of the sort contemplated by this regulation are among the most disfavored regulations of speech under First Amendment case law.
Let’s cover the list. No more American Rifleman Magazine (since it has technical data in it), no more descriptions over forums for how to reload or what recipe is best for certain situations, no more tactical training videos over YouTube, no more posting of results of ballistic gelatin, no more gun reviews, no more descriptions of how to field strip and clean firearms, and on and on the list goes.
It won’t work. Obama will be defeated, now and in eternity. Just like gun control doesn’t stop the availability of guns, Obama can’t stop the sharing of information. And for his totalitarianism, Mr. Obama has earned a place in hell on judgment day. In the mean time, the administration has declared war on you and your freedoms. This is the next battlefield.