Dallas Pushing to Confiscate Guns From Those Convicted of Domestic Violence

dallas-gunsIn a move that I’m sure will send gun activists running to the latest and greatest hits from their conspiracy theory handbooks, Rep. Rafael Anchia (D-Dallas) and a Dallas County judge are looking into legislation measures that would give judges and police officers more authority to confiscate guns from those convicted of domestic abuse or subjects of protective orders.

This move coincides with a recent program Dallas instituted where police officers do regular follow ups on the most at-risk victims of domestic violence.

But you can almost be certain that any time the words “guns” and “confiscated” are mentioned in the same sentence, gun rights advocates will be out in force absolutely losing their minds.

Considering that women are five times more likely to be killed by their abuser if their abuser has access to a firearm, I don’t see how anyone could logically oppose measures to remove guns from those convicted of domestic violence.

Of course, women aren’t the only victims of domestic violence.  Of the 17 deaths related to domestic violence in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex in 2014, seven were men, seven were women and three were children.

So I’m sure access to a firearm by someone committing domestic violence drastically increases the chance of a homicide no matter the gender of the abuser.

I’m really curious how gun rights activists will respond to this move.  Will they act logically and support removing guns from those who might legally own them, but have a history tied to domestic violence?  Or will many do what I expect and fight this attempt to get guns out of the hands of violent people in an effort to try to save lives?

After all, isn’t it the argument by these gun rights supporters that gun violence is all tied to mental health?  Well, isn’t it safe to say that people who have been convicted of domestic violence probably aren’t right in the head?

Because that’s the gray area of the “target mental health” argument that I always try to bring up.  At what point in assessing mental health do you determine if someone is too mentally ill to own guns?  In my opinion, I think domestic violence is definitely an area where I would support denying the right to own firearms to someone who has a history of abuse.

Though I reserve any optimism I might have for a common sense approach to this issue as most gun rights activists often lack the ability to use any kind of common sense when it comes to guns.


Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Emmet Casala

    I was looking at an article the other day about approaching family member of patients with dementia and ALS about removing some of Grandpa’s guns before he mistakes the postman or neighbor kids for Germans soldiers he used to fight back in the big one. Seemed like common sense, but the comments cracked me up on how its another ploy by the gubment to get my guns. I imagine this one, especially in Texas, will meet a lot of opposition

  • Marilyn Olsen Scheffler

    If a person doesn’t have a past episode with domestic violence then why should they be upset by this?

    • Jo Clark

      How dare you throw common sense into the mix? These are gun lovin’, gun totin’ manly men who want the right to shoot that thar woman if she gets too far outta line!

      • strayaway

        “or subjects of protective orders.”

        The title of this article missed the part about how protective orders that often have nothing to do with a history of violence. Huffington Post has an article, “The Worst Thing A Woman Can Do In Divorce Proceedings – The Abuse Of Orders of Protection” which describes the abuses allowed and fostered. “One needs only to allege that he or she “feels” threatened by their partner. There does not need to be any history of domestic violence whatsoever.” Protective orders are often ploys used to gain a tactical advantage in a divorce situation. The HP article explains how. In progressive Scandinavia, by way of contrast, everything is split 50-50, including custody, and there is no alimony or child support from one spouse to another in most situations.

  • billyz

    that’ll be half the state right there…

  • Lawrence Devine

    I wonder what BS the NRA is preparing to broadcast to counter this sensible move?

  • Sandy Greer

    …’subjects of protective orders’…

    ^^^Shall we pretend we don’t know they are often used as leverage in divorces? That we haven’t seen people, who once loved each other, turn on each other during divorces (fueled, in part, by attorneys) and use what they can (protective orders, or even children) to gain the upper hand against each other? For monetary purposes – or – to revenge themselves on each other.

    Domestic disputes = Shades of grey:

    Nephew and wife had a fight one night. Not physical, but loud enough, neighbors called the cops. No charges, no conviction – but he lost his job. A new hire police officer – he faced Zero Tolerance. Blacklisted – he can’t work a career he wanted the whole time, growing up.

    He’s a good man – the kind you can count on. From the Marines, to his dream job – to blacklisted. Now, he’s an EMT.

    This went down hard in the family. But we had to forgive it. Because they are still together – and theirs – a good marriage. Bad enough he lost his
    dream. He shouldn’t lose his access to firearms.

    First They Came.

    • Jimmy Miller

      No offense, but how do we know this is true? I won’t pretend to know a thing about this case, but for all we know they could have just dropped the charges because the wife was abused but declined to cooperate with prosecution. Sorry for doubting you, but I’ve seen enough lies put out by the gun lobby that I don’t ever take stories like this as gospel.

      • Sandy Greer

        Well, you don’t have to, Jimmy Miller. I don’t take offense you don’t believe me. I don’t think I’ve seen you before. Regulars here, that know me – would likely differ. But you’re not familiar with me. So no offense taken.

        ^^^Probably as good an answer as you could expect – from
        somebody you suspect of lying for the gun lobby. 😉

        Perhaps you’d care to speak to what I said about divorces – and
        what goes on there? I’d expect a man to have an opinion on that.

      • Jimmy Miller

        It’s a complex question with no pat answers for all occasions. Most of those protection orders are needed, though it’s clear there’s abuse of the system in some cases.

    • AW

      To tell the truth, I’m glad. Anybody who loses their cool to the extent that neighbors feel the need to call the cops, doesn’t need to be a cop. If you can’t avoid a screaming fight with someone you love, you probably don’t have the temperament to stay calm when possibly dangerous strangers are screaming at you, and that’s something every law officer has to do on virtually a daily basis. Zero tolerance during an officer’s probation period is a pretty smart thing.

      Similarly, what would it have hurt if he did lose his access to firearms for 30 days while they straightened things out? Not that he would have under this law, since there have to be charges or a protective order, but again, considering the rate of suicide among people going through marital stress, I would be relieved if someone had made sure my nephew didn’t have a gun when he was going through his divorce. While the state wouldn’t do anything about firearms in your nephew’s situation, maybe if you really loved him, YOU would have.

      • Sandy Greer

        Um. But they’re not divorced.

        >Because they are still together, and theirs – a good marriage.

        ^^^Remember?

        Your speculation he may have been suicidal during a divorce they never even came close to – is premature. At best. You let your imagination run wild. To say the least.