For those of you who don’t know me, I used to be a blogger here. I ended up being a blogger after meeting Ian Freeman at a hearing to legalize Marijuana back in 2007/8 when I was working in law enforcement. I was a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition at the time and was just beginning to convert to libertarianism. Through the grace of many episodes of Free Talk Live was my mind unwound – and I became a libertarian. I left law enforcement in 2010 after working there for 11-years.
I’m here guest blogging today to talk about the 2nd Amendment. Specifically, the restrictions placed on individuals who have had mental health services and became ineligible to exercise their 2A rights.
Did you know that according to the CDC in 2020 20.3% of adults received mental health treatment in the past 12 months. A much smaller percentage of that number suffered an acute crisis which requires court proceedings and longer-term treatment.
In 2016, the latter was me.
I unfortunately got really sick in 2016 and needed hospitalization. I was hospitalized in total for 8-months at the New Hampshire State Hospital in Concord. It was a difficult stay, but the staff there was awesome. They really care about the people in their care.
My stay at the Hospital was not voluntary. I was required to be there. Because of this I lost my federal firearm rights under 18 USC 922 (g) (4).
It has now been 7-years since I was very ill and through on-going therapeutic treatment I’m pleased to report I’ve been symptom free since 2017.
I would like to petition and present evidence of my good health to get my federal firearm rights back, but I cannot. New Hampshire is one of 17 states that do not have ATF certified programs for rights restoration. Even where I live right now, one of the most firearm restrictive states in the nation, Massachusetts, allows people who have recovered from mental illness to regain their gun rights.
The People of the United States have spoken, through their representatives, that people who have recovered from mental health struggles should be afforded due process to regain their rights. This exercise of due process to regain a federal right needs to be through a state program ran by a court, board, etc. In New Hampshire there is no program. If you lose your federal firearm rights in New Hampshire… you cannot get them back.
Enter the Good People of Pelham, NH through their Representative Tom Mannion (R). Rep. Mannion is a huge 2nd Amendment supporter and has introduced LSR 2024-2556: an Act relative to the federal relief from disabilities program. This law would establish that the New Hampshire Probate Court will be responsible for holding hearings for the restoration of federal firearm rights. This law, after enactment, will require ATF review to ensure that the requirements of the United States Attorney General are met.
Rep. Mannion’s bill is about fairness and due process. The State of New Hampshire will have every right to object and present its own evidence to counter an individual who wishes to regain their rights.
Fairness and due-process to exercise a constitutional right. That’s what it’s all about!
Are you an individual who is barred from firearm ownership because of mental health treatment in New Hampshire? Please e-mail me at email@example.com. There is strength in numbers!