Eric Davis: H.610 creates a gross violation of due process when it comes to guns

Editor’s note: This commentary is by Eric Davis, president of Gun Owners of Vermont.

As we approach the final quarter of yet another legislative biennium, the residents of Vermont are once again left wondering what manner of horrendous legislation will get pushed through its respective chamber of origin. Gun rights groups will be keeping a close eye on a few different bills, specifically the abomination known as H.610, which was crafted by special interest groups and currently sits in House Judiciary awaiting a vote.

As if the content of this monstrosity wasn’t bad enough, the way this bill has been crafted and pushed has not only soured sportsmen and gun rights advocates, but also has shaken the faith of some lawmakers as well. Currently on its eighth version, with no votes from the committee members, this bill levels a dangerous policy of mandatory gun confiscation aimed at persons who have not been convicted or even charged with a crime. H.610 would not only allow, but mandate gun confiscation based on potentially false accusations and does so ex-parte (without the defendant’s knowledge).

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Eric Davis: “This bill levels a dangerous policy of mandatory gun confiscation aimed at persons who have not been convicted or even charged with a crime. H.610 would not only allow, but mandate gun confiscation based on potentially false accusations and does so ex-parte.”

Furthermore, H.610 has wording which would create felons out of innocent bystanders and family members who might incidentally be present during one of these no-knock raids in which police confiscate private property without warning. Law enforcement, the judiciary, and civil rights groups alike have raised the question of why this blanket policy of force is needed when the court system in Vermont already has the discretion to remove firearms in cases where it believes there is a reasonable cause to do so. While other states are currently taking measures to shore up constitutional protections, Vermont seeks to create a detour around due process specifically for the purpose of gun confiscation, in which they might not be bothered by things like individual rights or the laws that protect them.

Despite all of this, proponents of this legislation are still billing it as a “mild reform” with which gun owners should not be concerned. Disingenuously labeled as a “domestic violence” bill, H.610 has everything to do with the taking of guns and completely fails to address the underlying issue of domestic violence. Section 1, which closes the so-called “Charleston Loophole,” makes no mention of domestic violence at all and seeks to deny gun purchases to everyday citizens in an attempt to correct a problem which exists only in theory. Once considered a safe bet by its authors, H.610 has been plagued not only by problems with its content but also the manner with which the bill has made it to its current form, being modified after hours by special interest groups, with the blessing of House Judiciary Committee Chair Maxine Grad and ranking member Rep. Martin Lalonde. When the news broke last month that the committee was, in fact, relying on special interest anti-gun groups to write the bill, and basically acting as copy editors for this mess, Grad dismissed public concerns off hand, stating, “this is the way things get done here.”

As backlash grew and tensions rose at the public hearing, Vermont’s progressive media outlets once again fell lockstep in line with the authoritarian agenda and have begun publishing the usual propaganda about so-called common sense gun safety measures in an effort to help our overlords buffalo the public into more useless gun control for the sake of gun control. Despite their best efforts, the fact is that anyone who has actually read this bill and is not in the pocket of either the special interest groups or the anti-gun media companies who are pushing it, would surely oppose such a nightmarish dystopian policy where residents have no rights and might be raided by government thugs at any time without any legal protections whatsoever.

Any proposal that mandates the use of force without due process should be slapped down by the full force of both constitutions, and if the process works as designed, H.610 should meet that end. Furthermore, any law that proposes to assume guilt over innocence and attempts to place the burden of proof on the individual, should not only be tossed on the scrap heap of failed legislation, but should forever be spit on and ridiculed each and every time it comes up. These ideas that single out and punish a specific group of people by stripping them of their rights under the assumption that they might do something wrong have no place in a free society. The supreme law of our Republic — the Constitution — guarantees it, and Montpelier would do well to remember that.

Images courtesy of WIkimedia Commons/West Midlands Police and Public domain
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13 thoughts on “Eric Davis: H.610 creates a gross violation of due process when it comes to guns

  1. This is abuse of power at it’s best. The common people, laborers have struggled for milleniums against tyranny and in all cases had to resort to violence to overthrow their Masters. This has not changed throughout history, even in the US, when it’s budding population fought against the oppressive colonizer, England. The Masters oppress the people with abuse of power and violence and the only deterrent against them is violence, since they are the law and law is ineffective against them. Most like to think not, but these ARE perilous times we live in. VT’s failing economy, gun control laws, burdening taxation, socialistic idealism, attacks on the State’s Constitution, the only ones not concerned are the perpetrators, the guilty ones. What Hitler did for Germany, the progressive, socialist, Dems will do for VT.

  2. Little question that H.610 is just another gun bill. The first order of business in an abuse case (assuming some summary court decision finds it is actually factual) is to separate the abuser form the victim. Charges by law enforcement (assumes incontrovertible evidence at the scene/investigation) of assault, injuries, threatening behavior, restraint, extortion, kidnapping, etc. will work to jail the suspected abuser until a hearing can occur in hours to days. The victim must press charges in court, the suspected abuser must have his/her day in court to refute those charges. Then and only then does the discussion of firearms and/or other deadly weapons i.e. cars, knives, rope, etc., be discussed.

    There must be penalties for filing false witness against the “abuser”. The Democratic gambit that we saw in the Kavanaugh hearings that was repeated over and over that when a “woman” makes a claim, “she must always be believed”. In that case their star witness Blasey-Ford was caught in a number of lies and was totally unreliable. Kavanaugh suffered irreparable damage. The accuser was given a free pass. Kavanaugh will have to live with the damage for a life time.

    In a recent article, a Florida lawyer who is representing 7 clients charged with domestic abuse showed that people filing abuse charges are doing so without penalty if the charges are false. After facing charges, five of the seven had to surrender their firearms, lost their jobs or had their income diminished, faced damage to their reputations, lost their families, their homes and incurred extensive legal fees, etc. only in the end to have the court drop all charges. For the other two defendants, their cases expect the same court judgement.

    H.610 does all of this ex parte and then the defendant has to fight to regain their rights. BAD BILL!! The accuser has no penalty or obligation other than face a civil lawsuit.

  3. I would like to see both the state and federal Constitution displayed on a fireproof surface, with a box of matches by each, and invite any member of our legislature who dislikes limits and wishes to do so to Burn these pesky documents.

    no longer ANYTHING in the way of Big Daddy, and his dictatorial manners.

    Let them express themselves – freely , just before they are tarred and feathered

  4. Interesting statement by dumb people:
    ” with the blessing of House Judiciary Committee Chair Maxine Grad and ranking member Rep. Martin Lalonde. When the news broke last month that the committee was, in fact, relying on special interest anti-gun groups to write the bill, and basically acting as copy editors for this mess, Grad dismissed public concerns off hand, stating, “this is the way things get done here.””

    Yup, that’s the “Communistic Way”. These two (and Baruth) in particular are the worse. Very evident, it’s about power and money.

    I think AOC has a place in Montpelier being seated or as an paid advisor. Soros could fund the Libs under the Dome raise their pay and totally get his way. Don’t think that Soros isn’t involved.

  5. This abhorrent abuse of Vermonter’s civil rights,if foisted on the people of Vermont will be challenged in court but in the mean time how many innocent will become criminals because oof the totalitarin marxist crimanals in Montpelier.

    If foisted on the people of Vermont,when it is challenged in the courts it will be found to be repugnant to the Vermont Constitution,not to mention the U S Constitution.
    These criminals have sworn a oath to protect the liberties of the people, it’s high time they by their votes on said bills be charged and tried on their violations of the oath they swore. If found guilty,a no knock raid on their residences and off to the grey bar motel for a ten year strech,seems fitting for said criminals.
    This totalitarian lawlessness needs to come to a end.

  6. It is axiomatic that people with pathological controlling personalities are attracted to public office as pederasts are attracted to playgrounds. They are addicted. They are driven people; they are fanatics. Have you any doubt? Observe the Democrat party – virtually every member – their reaction when their coup collapsed in 2016. Two years of the Mueller investigation. They even torpedoed Biden with the Ukraine idiocy. They haven’t given up, either. Speaking of Biden, would anyone not bereft of reason seek office in his mental condition? Their claimed benevolence, your best interests, the best interests of the nation don’t drive them; they are slaves to the insatiable hunger for power, for control. Can you imagine a scenario in which they would not, in perpetuity, continue to legislate more and more restrictions, more and more regulations, more and more laws? Look at the AGW religion they promote as justification! Don’t look for it to stop. It is the mania that drives revolutions. Fascists that they are, they promote anarchy to justify regulation. If ever they succeed in disarming the populace, indoctrinating enough of the young, embedding a sufficient force of their cohorts in unelected positions of power, those Progressives, those Controllers like Maduro, once in power will not willingly relinquish it. We came dangerously close in 2016.

    • Correct Francisco, Fascist “D”s thrive on control of the minions and
      will do what ever it takes to get and keep it.. They’ve in recent years
      become the pond scum of humanity…thanks to the progressive (regressive) and socialist tenants taken over the party..

    • 802-828-2228,there isn’t a week that goes by when the anti Constitutionalist criminals inhabiting the state house that I don’t call it.

  7. I urge VT Law Enforcement officials NOT to abrogate their oath to our National and State Constitution. If they believe they can continue to live peacefully among us while simultaneously violating our rights on behalf of a corrupted, tyrannical Legislature, they’re sadly mistaken.

    • Time for LEO’s to make a choice, do they honor the oath they swore or do they violate it and side with the crminial class inhabiting the state house in Montpelier ,time to choose.

      • Our ELECTED Sheriffs have been remarkably silent throughout this debate – that doesn’t cut it any more. They work for We The People and not the politicians paid for by special interest groups.

        Time for them to open up and tell us whose side they’re on – defenders of our Constitution or public threats. Stop hiding and take a stand like so many others have already done. Does any Sheriff have the intestinal fortitude to answer me?

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