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Hawaii bill would ban stalkers from buying guns


    A target shooter chambers a round in the semi-automatic handgun in preparation for firing at the Kokohead shooting range.

Hawaii lawmakers are pushing to keep guns out of the hands of stalkers and sex offenders to help combat domestic violence.

A bill being considered Tuesday would ban anyone convicted of misdemeanor for stalking or sexual assault from buying or owning guns. The bill aims to tackle domestic violence, which the state Health Department says affects nearly 15 percent of adults in Hawaii.

However, opponents say the bill is too broad, and unwelcomed text messages could be counted as misdemeanor stalking.

Despite being in the midst of a nationwide gun debate, over a dozen states have strengthened laws to keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers, sexual predators and stalkers. In a recent executive action, President Barack Obama said protecting domestic violence victims was one of his goals.

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  • I think the best response to this proposal is the one that asks for examples of misdemeanors that result in the loss of other constitutional rights. In this particular situation, should the perpetrators be required to submit to psychiatric evaluation, and subsequently be found mentally unstable, then that becomes different story.

    • Freedom of speech and freedom of association are also fundamental constitutional rights, and yet stalkers can be prohibited from talking to or associating with their victims. So Justice Thomas’ arguments that you are paraphrasing don’t make sense to me.

  • Perhaps the bill’s sponsor could relate the number of convicted stalkers and sex offenders who went on to use a firearm while committing an act of domestic violence. Is this really a problem in Hawaii?

    • It’s doubtful they can produce the examples nor do they likely care. If you push aside all of the feel good justifications, the core intent is what NanakuliBoss stated above: “The less guns, the better.” That’s really what it boils down to.

  • Sheesh… HPD has a Major who pleaded guilty to domestic violence and terroristic threatening. He still has his job and his gun. In fact No aloha Kealoha wants to make him asst. chief. Seems like there’s a double standard when it comes to taking away guns from people who commit certain crimes. Most of us don’t have a corrupt, politically connected union to protect us.

  • If this becomes law, it will be challenged, go the the 9th and the state will loose. Look at what is happening in California. In order to go forward there needs to he a national consensus.

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