Savannah Hulsey Pointer, FISM News
Recent documents have uncovered that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has attempted to remove the ability to legally own, use or purchase a firearm from multiple individuals by having them sign “NICS Indices Self-Submission” forms, essentially giving up their right to own a firearm.
Several Republican members of Congress, including Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), demanded that the Department of Justice and FBI remit proof that the FBI is no longer taking the gun rights of Americans, as internal documents previously indicated.
“Americans can’t simply sign their constitutional rights away, even to the FBI,” Rep. Michael Cloud (R-TX), who signed the October letter, told the Washington Examiner. “As Republicans enter a House majority, we must use our investigative power to put a check on federal agencies who have proven to be eager and willing to crack down on Americans’ right to keep and bear arms.”
The federal agents claimed the applicants in question were a “danger” to themselves or others or lacked the “mental capacity adequately to contract or manage” their life as the two categories that the FBI required signatories to indicate on the forms. Beginning at least in 2016 and continuing through at least December 2019, the FBI distributed the forms to individuals at their homes and at other unspecified locations, according to the FBI, which claims the practice was discontinued.
Gun Owners of America, a pro-gun rights organization, received the signed documents as part of its Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the FBI to compel the release of data.
Attorneys for the Second Amendment and GOA said that the forms’ existence, which record signatories in the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System, raises unresolved legal issues.
Given that it did not follow the procedure required by federal law for government agencies to acquire approval from the Office of Management and Budget before gathering information from the public, this includes the question of whether the form is even legal in the first place.
The Gun Control Act of 1968, which describes how someone may be prohibited from owning guns if he or she is “adjudicated as a mental defective or has been committed to a mental institution,” is also unclear in light of how the FBI’s use of the NICS forms complies with it.
However, the law makes no mention of those declaring themselves unsuitable to possess weapons.
“The act is clear, and it says ‘adjudicated,'” John Harris, a lawyer who directs the Tennessee Firearms Association, told the Washington Examiner.
What kind of backgrounds the eight signers of the forms had is as yet unknown; however, previous reports on the forms had information indicating that the signatories were people who had reportedly threatened violence in person, online, or on social media.
“While the initial reports were alarming enough, as GOA dug deeper, things just kept getting worse,” Erich Pratt, senior vice president of GOA, told the Washington Examiner. “We thank Ms. Greene and all the members who joined her in demanding answers for this damning breach of the public trust, and we look forward to assisting in any possible way as investigations into this matter develop in Congress.”
The Daily Caller reported in September of this year that according to internal papers and emails, the FBI discreetly sent forms to Americans between 2016 and 2019 asking them to “voluntarily” renounce their right to possess, acquire, or even use weapons.
The signed documents were uncovered by (GOA), who asserted they create significant legal issues, according to attorneys.
Robert Olson, outside counsel for GOA, said, “We’re into a pre-crime, Minority Report type of world where the FBI believes it can take constitutional rights away from anyone it thinks possibly might pose a threat in the future.”