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Second Amendment Rights for Veterans at Stake Due to Arbitrary Mental Health Rulings

In the wake of school and public shootings, many people are demanding legislature geared toward real problem solving about the issue of gun control. The methods by which our country moves to heed this cry is up for debate, but there’s something to be said about how far we allow second amendment rights to be restricted, especially when it comes to bills that pass with loopholes that are flat-out unconstitutional and unfairly target those who have served our country.

Veteran Discrimination

Many people are advocating for tighter restrictions on the accessibility of guns for people who have mental health problems of a certain degree, but such rhetoric that mental instability is the cause of mass shootings is faulty at best. Nonetheless, in response to this logic, there has been legislature that has banned people who have been ruled by a judge to be too unstable to buy firearms. However, veterans with PTSD seem to have been held to a different standard than other individuals and have been scrutinized far more closely. The process is far more arbitrary, leading to an almost undisputable discrimination against veterans. Essentially, the VA would be allowed to send names of veterans deemed mentally unstable to the FBI for inclusion on a barred list, but by what standards are these people judged?

Already in Place?

Reportedly, this legislature has been rejected, but in some areas, veterans have reported receiving notice in the mail that their second amendment rights were stripped, which is ultimately an easy, bureaucratic way to circumvent due process. The letter does detail how an individual can challenge such a decision, but doing so would be acquiescing to a lengthy and expensive appeals process that many veterans simply cannot afford. In essence, this would prevent a number of veterans from purchasing arms without any way to reverse the ruling.

There are allegedly a number of other veterans who claimed that the same second amendment rights were stripped from them without a single notice, finding out only when they went to buy a firearm and were denied.

It’s important to be more active when it comes to politics that directly affect our constitutional rights regardless of the current political temperature on the topic. Any restrictions that get put in place must not directly violate the rights afforded to us from the inception of this country or allow for discriminatory or infringement policies.

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