With Memorial Day approaching Americans should be preparing to honor our veterans and military heroes currently fighting for us as well as remembering those we have lost. This honor should be especially due from our own government that has sent these brave men and women off to war. Unfortunately, the opposite is true. It is clear that the Federal government has declared war on our veterans and is intent on denying them the very Constitutional rights they fought to protect.
First there is the ever widening scandal involving the systematic denial of veterans Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms and their rights to due process under the provisions of the Fifth Amendment. This is being orchestrated by the VA which sends out letters to veterans telling them that because of physical or mental disabilities the VA is going to declare them incompetent to handle their own financial affairs and appoint a fiduciary to represent them.
Then in the same letter the veterans are told that “A determination of incompetency will prohibit you from purchasing, possessing, receiving, or transporting a firearm or ammunition. If you knowingly violate any of these prohibitions, you may be fined, imprisoned, or both pursuant to the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, Pub.L.No. 103-159, as implemented at 18, United States Code 924(a)(2).”
An estimated 150,000 veterans are now on the NICS background check list and cannot legally purchase firearms. I believe that the vast majority of them do not belong on the list and many of the veterans don’t know why they are there or even that they have been placed on the list. The only legitimate reasons for veterans to lose Second Amendment Rights is if they have been convicted of a felony, are known drug addicts, or been found to be mentally ill to a point where they are a danger to themselves or others.
The veterans that are being represented by the United States Justice Foundation (USJF) are reporting to us that they are being declared incompetent for having minor depression, PTSD, or simply because they let their spouses pay the family bills. Some veterans are reporting that if they try to fight the VA determination of incompetence the VA either threatens to withhold their payments or actually has done so. This is extortion since many veterans rely on their VA payments to feed themselves and their families.
The VA has refused to respond to several requests made under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) for information about the criteria being used to declare veterans incompetent and deny them their Second Amendment rights. The USJF has filed a suit to force the VA to turn over this information and will soon be filing a class action suit on behalf of veterans to stop the whole process.
This suit is the last chance these veterans may have since the bill introduced by Senator Richard Burr (R.NC) to protect the gun rights of veterans was recently defeated by the Democrats in the Senate.
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