Chicago Alderman Richard Mell (D-33) has long been an advocate of restricting our Right to Keep and Bear Arms. He was one of the leaders who promoted and passed Chicago’s infamous ban on handguns in 1982. Along with that ban was passed a companion law that required all firearms lawfully owned at the time to be registered, and re-registered every year. Alderman Mell, however, recently failed to re-register his firearms in time. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Alderman Mell claims he tasked a staff member with re-registering his collection, which apparently includes rifles, shotguns, and handguns (handguns owned at the time of the ban were grandfathered in if registered). The luxury of having someone take over the responsibility of re-registering your lawfully owned property in order to stay law-abiding is clearly not something the average Chicago gun owner can afford, making Mell a prime example of the type of elitist gun owner who feels his guns are perfectly safe and legal, but most citizens cannot be trusted with their own.
Unfortunately for Mell, his designee appears to have dropped the ball, leaving the elitist gun owner in a quandary. How would he be able to continue to own the firearms he feels he should be allowed to own, while still leaving intact the onerous law that imposes severe restrictions on the average law-abiding citizen? The answer was easy, for an elected official with a strong sense of entitlement. Simply propose a new, personally tailored law that will accommodate your needs. And that is exactly what Mell has done. Alderman Mell has proposed a one-time registration amnesty that would allow people (especially Mell) to register any firearms they may have forgotten to re-register.
This proposal is being supported by another noted Chicago anti-gunner, Mayor Richard Daley (D). Daley, as most in the pro-gun community likely know, pushes for new anti-gun restrictions every year. He has made it clear through his various proposals that he wishes to eliminate virtually all gun ownership in Illinois. So why would he support this amnesty? He claims it is so he can get an accurate count of the number of guns in Chicago. But for approximately 20 years, similar amnesty proposals have been brought up, and none have passed. It would seem clear that the real reason for Daley’s support would be to get a fellow anti-gun lawmaker out of hot water.
While this amnesty may be a very good idea for those otherwise law-abiding Chicago gun owners who find themselves in the same predicament as Mell, the reason for it simply reeks of self-serving, hypocritical, political elitism.