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
NASCAR Takes a Hard Left

News  

Friday, August 30, 2019

NASCAR Takes a Hard Left

After decades of NASCAR drivers literally turning left for hours every race day (road course races excluded, of course), the governing body appears to be taking a figurative left turn, politically. K-Var, a retailer in outdoor and ...

San Francisco Board of Supervisors Declares NRA a “Domestic Terrorist Organization”

News  

Sunday, September 8, 2019

San Francisco Board of Supervisors Declares NRA a “Domestic Terrorist Organization”

On September 3, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution, “declaring that the National Rifle Association is a domestic terrorist organization and urging other cities, states, and the federal government to do the same.”The resolution was ...

California: Anti-Gun Bills Sent to Governor

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

California: Anti-Gun Bills Sent to Governor

Earlier this week, the California Legislature cast final votes on AB 12, AB 61, AB 879, AB 1254, AB 1297, and AB 1669, which will now move to Governor Newsom's desk for his consideration.  

“Pro-gun” Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick Turns on Second Amendment Supporters, Sides With Anti-Gun Lobby

News  

Sunday, September 8, 2019

“Pro-gun” Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick Turns on Second Amendment Supporters, Sides With Anti-Gun Lobby

Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick uses his political website to claim he is “leading the fight for life and liberty in Texas, including … standing up for the Second Amendment.” He also proudly notes his prior NRA endorsement. But ...

News  

Friday, September 13, 2019

NRA Statement on Texas Governor's Safety Action Report

The National Rifle Association released the following statement on Friday regarding Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's Texas Safety Action Report:   

California Mayor to Tax Law-abiding Gun Owners for the Actions of Criminals

News  

Friday, August 30, 2019

California Mayor to Tax Law-abiding Gun Owners for the Actions of Criminals

This week, San Jose, Calif. Mayor Sam Liccardo took to the pages of the Washington Post to tout a plan to require law-abiding gun owners in his city to purchase firearms insurance. Under the Liccardo proposal, firearms owners ...

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Florida Alert! Are You Ready For Gun Registration?

A Constitutional Amendment calling for an "assault weapons" ban is being proposed for the ballot in 2020.  The definition of "assault weapon," in the amendment, includes ALL semi-automatic rifles and shotguns.  If the amendment goes on the ballot ...

Groovy: Former NY Times Editor Wants to Return to 1960 Gun Laws

News  

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Groovy: Former NY Times Editor Wants to Return to 1960 Gun Laws

Proving once again that ignorance is no bar to publication in the U.S. legacy press, former executive editor of the New York Times Howell Raines has offered his inane take on the current gun control ...

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.

Marching Toward Gun Confiscation: Prohibition Advocates Released Unhinged Gun Control Plan

News  

Monday, August 26, 2019

Marching Toward Gun Confiscation: Prohibition Advocates Released Unhinged Gun Control Plan

This week, March for Our Lives – the gun control group that arose in the wake of the criminal mass attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. – released a lengthy plan ...

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.