Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN Legal & Legislation

Bill O’Reilly On Citizens Maintaining Second Amendment Rights During States Of Emergency: “That’s a pretty extreme position.”

Friday, February 19, 2010

As we have often reported, in the wake of the illegal gun confiscations in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, NRA focused its attention on legislation to amend existing emergency-powers statutes to guarantee that local authorities never again attempt the confiscation of lawfully owned firearms during states of emergency.

As you know, following Hurricane Katrina, many New Orleans residents legally armed themselves to protect their lives and property from civil disorder. With no way to call for help, and police unable to respond, lawful citizens were able to defend themselves and their neighbors against looters, arsonists and other criminals.

However, just when these people needed their guns for self-protection the most, New Orleans’s Police Superintendent ordered the confiscation of firearms, allegedly under a state emergency-powers law.  Fortunately, an NRA lawsuit brought an end to the seizures, and subsequent NRA-backed legislation ensured the gun confiscation travesty would not repeat itself. 

Unfortunately, many states have “emergency powers” laws that give the government permission to suspend or limit gun sales, and to prohibit or restrict citizens from transporting or carrying firearms. In some states, authorities are authorized to seize guns outright from citizens who’ve committed no crime, and who would then be defenseless against disorder. 

Within the past few weeks, a state of emergency was declared in King, North Carolina following a relatively heavy snowstorm.  As a result of the emergency declaration, local residents were banned from carrying firearms in their vehicles.

Entering into the fray this week was Bill O’Reilly, host of The O’Reilly Factor, on Fox News. 

In a February 18, interview that discussed, in part, the confiscation of legally-owned guns during a declared state of emergency (as was the case in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina), O’Reilly affirmed his support of such confiscations.

When it was explained to O’Reilly that whether or not there’s a state of emergency, it’s still unconstitutional to confiscate lawfully-owned guns from honest citizens wanting to defend themselves, the Fox talking head retorts, “That’s a pretty extreme position.”

Perhaps in your opinion, Bill.  But for most law-abiding Americans, the notion that the government can suspend the Constitution and leave citizens without the most effective means of self-defense just because of a snowstorm or hurricane -- well, that would qualify as an extreme position.

Of course, no one condones the mindless violence of those who would loot a helpless city, or shoot at rescue workers.  But one reason for the citizens to retain a legal right to arms, is precisely because the government has no legal duty to protect them.  Legislative bodies can, and should, act to protect the self-defense rights of citizens at the times when those rights are most important.

NRA-ILA was instrumental in passing H.R. 5013--the “Disaster Recovery Personal Protection Act,”--federal legislation to protect gun owners’ rights during emergencies.  And we continue to fight for state legislation to do the same.  NRA-ILA has successfully passed Emergency Powers legislation in 28 states since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and we will not rest until we reform all emergency powers laws to prohibit these types of arbitrary attacks on Second Amendment rights.
TRENDING NOW
Biden Plots Sneak Attack Against U.S. Firearms Industry

News  

Monday, January 25, 2021

Biden Plots Sneak Attack Against U.S. Firearms Industry

Joe Biden has unveiled his agenda for his first 100 days in the White House, and his list includes an initiative aimed at nothing less than the destruction of the U.S. firearms industry. This is ...

Washington: Vague Carry Ban and Rehashed Mag Ban Introduced and Scheduled for Hearings Next Week

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Washington: Vague Carry Ban and Rehashed Mag Ban Introduced and Scheduled for Hearings Next Week

Next week, anti-gun legislation, Senate Bill 5078 and Senate Bill 5038, are scheduled for hearings in the Senate Law and Justice Committee. 

President Trump’s Executive Order Expands LEOSA Carry Rights

News  

Thursday, January 21, 2021

President Trump’s Executive Order Expands LEOSA Carry Rights

On January 18th, President Trump signed an “Executive Order on Protecting Law Enforcement Officers, Judges, Prosecutors, And Their Families.” The order aims to provide for more federal law enforcement officers, prosecutors, and judges to be able to ...

Anti-Gun Groups Want to Abolish What Law-Abiding Virginians Have been Doing for Centuries

News  

Monday, January 25, 2021

Anti-Gun Groups Want to Abolish What Law-Abiding Virginians Have been Doing for Centuries

Last year, the anti-Second Amendment majority in the Virginia legislature that was purchased by gun-ban extremists passed a number of anti-gun measures. Anti-gun activists even demanded an opportunity to gloat over what they had bought.

Gun Control Groups Push Hollywood to Produce Even More Anti-gun Propaganda

News  

Monday, January 25, 2021

Gun Control Groups Push Hollywood to Produce Even More Anti-gun Propaganda

Gun control advocates are once again pushing the entertainment industry to produce anti-gun propaganda with the explicit goal of advancing failed firearm legislation. The renewed overt effort will strike some as superfluous, given Hollywood’s lengthy track record of anti-gun agitprop and left-wing political monoculture.

“Unity” President Vows to “Defeat” America’s Oldest and Largest Civil Rights Group

News  

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

“Unity” President Vows to “Defeat” America’s Oldest and Largest Civil Rights Group

Biden issued this “pledge” in a January 8 tweet that falsely tried to suggest the men and women of the NRA were somehow implicated in an infamous crime that was committed a decade ago by ...

Florida Alert! Gun Bills Filed in Florida - SO FAR

Friday, January 15, 2021

Florida Alert! Gun Bills Filed in Florida - SO FAR

As Legislators begin to file bills for the 2021 Florida Legislative Session, we are getting questions about various bills due to media reports on gun bills.  Below is a partial list of bills we will ...

Utah: House Judiciary Committee Passes Permitless Carry Legislation!

Saturday, January 23, 2021

Utah: House Judiciary Committee Passes Permitless Carry Legislation!

On January 22nd, the Utah House Judiciary Committee passed House Bill 60 on an 8 - 3 vote. 

ATF Withdraws Pistol Brace “Guidance”

News  

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

ATF Withdraws Pistol Brace “Guidance”

On December 23rd, ATF posted a document to its website indicating that its recently published Objective Factors for Classifying Weapons with “Stabilizing Braces” is withdrawn.

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.