We work to prevent gun violence
National Concealed Carry Rears Its Head Yet Again
HR 986 (Concealed Carry Reciprocity) could pass in the House and make its way to the Senate. The bill currently has 215 co-sponsors.
Reciprocity places a great deal of risk on law enforcement simply to extend a courtesy to a few people.
This dangerous bill would allow people who have a concealed handgun license (CHL) from one state to carry a loaded, hidden gun in another state putting both law enforcement and the public at greater risk of gun shot death or injury.
Ceasefire Oregon believes HR 986 is harmful to Oregonians and infringes on states' rights to protect their citizens. In fact, the Oregon legislature has rejected reciprocity several times, most recently in 2015 (HB 3093).
What you need to know about concealed handgun reciprocity:
- Concealed handgun licenses are not like drivers’ licenses. Drivers’ licenses ensure a uniform standard of knowledge across the country. However, CHL training requirements can differ widely from state to state.
- Reciprocity would pose serious challenges to law enforcement. In addition to confronting travelers packing heat with little or no training or knowledge of relevant Oregon firearms laws, law enforcement would be further challenged by the difficulty of verifying that individuals bearing out-of-state CHLs are legally allowed to carry a gun in public.
- Not granting reciprocity is well within the scope the the Second Amendment. As stated in McDonald: “It is important to keep in mind that Heller, while striking down a law that prohibited the possession of handguns in the home, recognized that the right to keep and bear arms is not ‘a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose.’”
- Having a CHL does NOT mean that a person is an expert. In fact, Oregon issues CHLs to people who have never even touched a gun.
- According the a Violence Policy Center report, concealed handgun license holders are responsible for at least 873 deaths not involving self defense since 2007, including 29 mass shootings that killed 139 people.
Oregonians do not benefit if more hidden, loaded guns are allowed in our state. The bill’s sole “benefit,” conferred upon those who want to avoid paperwork and a few dollars in CHL fees, is far outweighed by the risk of having poorly trained CHL holders from other states carrying loaded, concealed guns on our streets, in our parks and even into our Capitol building.
Call your Congressional Representative and Senator now and tell them to vote NO on HR 986. HR986 is all risk and no benefit.
Senator Ron Wyden: (503) 326-7525
Senator Jeff Merkley: (503) 326-3386
Congresswoman Bonamici: (503) 469-6010
Congressman Blumenauer: (503) 231-2300
Congressman DeFazio: 541-465-6732
Congressman Schrader: (503) 588-9100
Congressman Walden: (541) 389-4408
Today is your day to join the good fight.
April 20, 1999. Columbine High School Shooting.
Seventeen years ago today, gun violence stole the lives of 12 students and one teacher at Columbine High School. Twenty other people were wounded. Tragically, Columbine wasn’t the first mass shooting at a school, nor was it the last.
Since 1999, a new generation of children have grown up and are now in their own last years of high school like so many of the Columbine students seventeen years ago. Now, however, because of the regularity of mass shootings and a government that values gun money over lives of American children, this cohort of students have often had active-shooter lockdown drills. They are called Generation Lockdown.
But make no mistake: while Generation Lockdown was growing up, much was done to fight the gun lobby and educate Americans about preventing gun violence. Ceasefire Oregon has been working since 1999 to stop bad gun bills from being enacted and to promote effective, reasonable laws to reduce gun violence like Oregon’s universal background check law. Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation has worked since 1994 to take guns off the streets and educate Oregonians about safe storage (Asking Saves Kids).
We were far from the only ones who rolled up our sleeves and got to work.
Across the country, the Brady Campaign worked ferociously for stronger national and state guns laws. States United to Prevent Gun Violence was created as an umbrella organization for the many state gun violence prevention (GVP) groups that formed. Center for American Progress threw its considerable power into the fight. Other national GVP groups formed including the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, Stop Handgun Violence, Everytown for Gun Safety, Moms Demand Action, Newtown Action Alliance. The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence was formed in 1999 to help thousands of GVP activists and groups understand state and national gun laws.
One of the most courageous GVP activists is Tom Mauser whose son, Daniel, was killed at Columbine High School. Tom has been on a GVP crusade of truly epic proportions since 1999. Tom once said,
“Our goal is to honor Daniel with acts of hope, and not mar our memory of him with anger or hatred or despair.”
So please join GVP activists like Tom Mauser, Donna Dees, Sandy and Lonnie Phillips, Richard Martinez and thousands of others who have helped changed hearts and laws while Generation Lockdown was growing up. Despite what the gun lobby would like you to believe, the GVP movement has made tremendous progress, and we are just getting warmed up!
Below is a list of groups where you can find more information about how to join the good fight. Don’t worry if you don’t know what to do. We were all beginners once and we will help you.
Join us to honor those we have lost and to change American culture so we won’t have another Generation Lockdown.
Welcome to the good fight.
Penny Okamoto, Executive Director
States United to Prevent Gun Violence Check States United for your state GVP group
Center for American Progress
Coalition to Stop Gun Violence
Stop Handgun Violence
Everytown for Gun Safety
Moms Demand Action
Newtown Action Alliance
Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence
On April 16, Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation supporters joined COEF board members, author Heidi Yewman, Paul Kemp of Gun Owners for Responsible Ownership, and Andrew Perez at a special presentation of “The Amish Project” at the Portland Actors Conservatory (PAC).
“The Amish Project” is a powerful play that explores the meaning of forgiveness against the backdrop of the Nickel Mines shooting at an Amish school house on October 2, 2006. Please take time to attend a performance. Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation extends our special thanks to Director Beth Harper, the amazing PAC actors, Heidi Yewman, Paul Kemp, Andrew Perez and Samson of PAC.
All societies struggle with violence. In the United States, however, readily available guns allow people who have thoughts of violence to quickly and easily turn violent thoughts into very real bloodshed.
Ultimately, our society puts responsibility upon the shooter for the shooting. Should the gun industry bear the responsibility as well?
The willingness of our government to support the gun lobby’s legislative agenda, coupled with the gun lobby’s vile marketing campaigns, have made our country unique among civilized nations. America is the only Western nation that allows guns to be sold anywhere, anytime, with very few, if any, safety checks or requirements.
If the Nickel Mines shooter didn’t have easy access to a gun, would he have committed this atrocity? Would he have killed 5 innocent school girls and left three others wounded?
Who is responsible for gun violence? To whom does our forgiveness belong? An angry shooter? A young man who unintentionally shot a best friend? A government that allows our country to be inundated with firearms? The gun manufacturers?
COEF urges you to see “The Amish Project” and share your thoughts with us on Facebook or Twitter at @CeasefireOregon.
If you missed the special performance, you can still attend one of the remaining performances. Tickets are still available for shows this week at Portland Actors Conservatory.
Portland Actors Conservatory
1436 SW Montgomery Street
Portland, OR 97201
The Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation is honored to partner with the Portland Actors Conservatory for a special presentation of "The Amish Project."
"The Amish Project," a play written by Jessica Dickey and directed by Beth Harper, explores what it means to forgive.
Saturday, April 16, 7:30 PM
1436 SW Montgomery
"The Amish Project" is a fictional representation of a real shooting that took place on October 2, 2006.
COEF will facilitate a panel discussion immediately after the play.
Tickets are available online HERE through COEF's partner, States United to Prevent Gun Violence.
Tickets are $15 to $25 based on ability to pay. All proceeds benefit the Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation. Tickets are available online HERE through COEF's partner, States United to Prevent Gun Violence.
Background information on the Amish Schoolhouse shooting:
On October 2, 2006, eight girls were shot, killing five young girls, at the West Nickel Mines School, an Amish one-room schoolhouse in the Old Order Amish community of Nickel Mines, a village in Pennsylvania. The gunman took the girls hostage and shot eight out of ten girls (aged 6–13), killing five, before committing suicide in the schoolhouse. The Amish community responded with forgiveness and reconciliation.
GUN VIOLENCE PREVENTION WINS FOR THE 2016 LEGISLATIVE SESSION
The number of GVP advocates and the sheer power of your collective voice was breathtaking this year! Even though Senate President Peter Courtney blocked HB 4147 (Charleston Loophole), this legislative session was a striking victory for gun violence prevention in many ways.
1. Never before have so many legislative aides told me they were flooded with calls from GVP advocates! Excellent phone work, folks!
2. You and advocates from all the Oregon GVP groups *owned* the Capitol and hearing room when our bills were up for a hearing or a vote.
3. HB 4075 passed. This bill will establish a tip line for Oregon schools.
4. HB 4066 passed. This bill will prohibit weaponized drones, including prohibiting people from firing bullets from drones.
5. HB 4046 passed. This bill increases penalties for poaching. Included is the ability of the state to seize guns used in a third or subsequent poaching conviction.
6. The opposition completely failed to introduce any legislation.
7. A key Oregon legislator, Rep. Jeff Barker (D-Hillsboro), was crucial in helping HB 4147 pass out of the Oregon House. Rep. Barker's support for this was critical and he is taking some nasty heat from the opposition so please call him and thank him for his support!
Please call Rep. Jeff Barker now to THANK him for his support. 503-986-1428
We will be back in 2017 with tougher bills and huge support. In the meantime, let's work on electing #gunsense candidates!
Here are the facts about HB 4147:
-Over 90% of firearm background checks are completed within minutes.
-Some background checks take longer. This is calling a "pending" background check.
-Under current law, a check is allowed to pend for 3 business days.
-After that time, the seller is permitted to sell the gun even if the check is not complete. This is called the Charleston loophole. (Note: the seller is not required to sell the gun. Walmart, for example, doesn't sell guns without a completed background check.)
-Nine people were gunned down in their own church last year in Charleston, South Carolina, because a man who was prohibited from buying a gun was sold a gun because his firearm background check was not completed within 3 days.
-From 2010 through 2014, gun dealers throughout the United States have gone forward with 15,729 gun sales to prohibited people because a background check could not be completed within three business days. (In 2010, FBI referred 2,955 denials to ATF for firearm retrieval actions because the sale was denied after the three-business-day period. 3,166 such referrals were made in 2011; 3,722 in 2012; 3,375 in 2013; and 2,511 in 2014. FBI, NICS Operations Reports, 2010-2014)
-According to FBI data, more than 20 percent of “proceed default” sales, where a final determination was made by the FBI, involve sales of firearms to prohibited individuals. An analysis of FBI data by Mayors Against Illegal Guns found "default proceed sales are more than eight times more likely to be associated with a prohibited purchaser than sales where the purchaser's background check is resolved within three days."
-HB 4147 only pertains to background checks that are pending. A gun seller may proceed with the gun sale as soon as the background check is approved.
The opposition has created a wild hypothetical story about an abused woman who must have a gun immediately to shoot an abusive husband. This story is a complete fabrication. Let's get the facts straight about domestic violence and guns:
-Background checks prevent abusive people from buying guns. (Shame on the gun lobby for making it easier for abusive people to be armed!)
-An abused woman has other avenues of immediate protection, including contacting the police.
-According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, having a gun in the home does not make an abused woman safer and increases the risk of homicide 20 times when there is a history of domestic violence (John Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, 2010)
Ceasefire Oregon applauds the courage of legislators who have introduced bills which will provide strong, effective ways to combat gun violence.
Background information about HB 4147 and the Charleston Loophole:
Federal law requires that licensed gun dealers run criminal background checks on all potential gun buyers. But due to a National Rifle Association-backed provision added to the 1993 Brady Bill, the law allows sales to proceed after three business days—even if background check operators have not confirmed the buyer is legally allowed to have guns.
- On July 10, 2015, the FBI said the Charleston shooter was able to purchase the gun he used in the shooting because this “default proceed” period had elapsed—and the dealer made the sale even though the background check was not complete.
- In the last five years, gun dealers have gone forward with more than 15,000 gun sales to prohibited people because a background check could not be completed within the default period.
How was this deadly, NRA-backed loophole carved out? Read it on Fact Check.
Your generous donation can help reduce gun violence.
Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation (COEF) works to reduce gun violence through education programs including ASK: Asking Saves Kids, suicide prevention programs and a gun turn-in. Donations to COEF are tax-deductible. Donate here.
Ceasefire Oregon (CO) works to reduce gun violence through legislative and advocacy work, including our work to pass SB 941, Oregon's firearm background check bill. Donations to CO are not tax-deductible. Donate here.
Ceasefire Oregon's PAC works to elect candidates and support legislators who will be champions for gun violence prevention. Donate online here or send your generous check to:
Ceasefire Oregon PAC
7327 SW Barnes Road, #316
Portland, Oregon 97225
Take Action Now to #EndTheBan on CDC funding for gun violence prevention research.
Call now to end the ban on funding research into gun violence prevention. The phone numbers for Oregon's congressional delegation are listed below. Don't know your legislator? Check here.
For nearly twenty years the Center for Disease Control has not been able to study ways to reduce gun violence. Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Nita Lowey both issued statements calling for ending the ban on gun violence research in the spending bill currently being negotiated. The Washington Post reported that Speaker Paul Ryan’s office speculated that the ban “could be an area of compromise” in the spending negotiations.
It is critical that your members of Congress hear from you in support of gun violence research. If you can't call today, please call tonight or tomorrow with a brief message.
Let your members of Congress know that:
- You are a constituent and gun violence prevention is a top priority for you.
- Gun violence is one of the leading causes of preventable death in our country and we must take a comprehensive public health approach to address this ongoing crisis.
- We need evidence-based research to identify programs that prevent gun violence prevention.
- Congress must strike the language in the spending bill that has effectively banned gun violence research for nearly 20 years and provide adequate and unrestricted funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other scientific agencies to research the causes of gun violence and develop prevention strategies.
Rep. Suzanne Bonamici 503-469-6010
Rep. Peter DeFazio: 541-465-6732
Rep. Earl Blumenaer: 503-231-2300
Rep. Kurt Shrader: 503-557-1324
Rep. Greg Walden: 541-389-4408
Every call makes a difference so please share this with your friends.
Ceasefire Oregon and the Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation are filled with sorrow by the rampage in San Bernardino today. Along with our sorrow, however, is outrage that legislators throughout the United States have allowed mass shootings to become commonplace in our country.
Current reports indicate that fourteen people were shot to death and seventeen people were injured. At this time, if you live in southern California, please do what you can to help the victims and their families. They will need blood donations, someone to help with their children, hot meals to eat, rides to the hospital, loving ears to listen to their cries and strong arms to comfort them.
Wherever you live, help the victims and their families by calling your legislators NOW to demand an end to this national nightmare. Find your legislator here.
We know what to expect: kneejerk requests for thoughts and prayers from impotent legislators who are owned by the gun lobby and dead silence from the National Rifle Association. But let them hear your voice this time. Let them know that you are demanding an end to gun violence and you will hold them accountable at the ballot box and when you stop donating to their campaigns and political parties.
Let’s be honest: if more guns meant less crime, America would be the safest nation on earth.
If you don’t know what to say, please feel free to forward this email to your state and federal legislators, your friends, and your family. We need to do whatever it takes to end this gun madness. Find your legislators' contact info here: openstates.org/find_
Tell your legislators that you demand an end to gun violence. Tell them:
Stop allowing the gun lobbies like the NRA to dictate our gun laws with their campaign donations.
Reinstate the assault weapons ban.
Implement much higher standards for gun ownership including firearm training, safe storage and no guns for violent misdemeanants.
Hold federally licensed firearms dealers accountable if they sell guns illegally.
Find more details at Ceasefire Oregon at http://www.ceasefireoregon.
Think it’s too soon to call for change? For the victims in San Bernardino, it’s too late.
Ceasefire Oregon Reveals Plan to Cut Gun Violence
Ceasefire Oregon and the Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation Release Recommendations to Reduce Gun Violence by Thirty to Fifty Percent in Five Years. The plan includes legislative and educational courses of action. The three overarching goals are to require higher standards for firearm ownership, enhance accountability of federally licensed firearms dealers and improve safety standards for firearms and firearm ownership. Details are available on our new webpage.
How well do you know Oregon's gun laws? Take our short quiz on Ceasefire Oregon's New Trajectory blogpost site. Test your knowledge and find out the truth about Oregon gun laws. Click here to take the quiz.
Ceasefire Oregon's International Response to the Umpqua Community College Shooting, Printed in The Guardian, Oct 2, 2015
TED Talk: Dr. Daniel Webster, Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, examines some surprisingly hopeful possibilities that exist to reduce gun violence significantly. Dr. Webster states, "Our level of violence will...be going down. Violence is not necessarily engraved into American culture or law." Dr. Webster has a four-part plan to reduce gun violence. His overall concept is to increase standards for gun ownership and enhance the accountability of federal licensed firearms dealers (gun sellers). Watch his 18 minute TED Talk.
2015 Legislative Session Sees Huge Wins for Gun Violence Prevention in Oregon!
Gun violence prevention made huge strides in Oregon's 2015 legislative session. Ceasefire Oregon and the Ceasefire Oregon Education Foundation have worked together for over 20 years to educate our community and Oregon legislators about gun violence and how to prevent it. This year, Ceasefire Oregon leveraged those years of work and, together with our allies including the Oregon Alliance for Gun Safety and Everytown for Gun Safety, passed SB 941 which closed the private gun sale loophole. We also helped stop HB 3093, which would have allowed more hidden, loaded guns in Oregon carried by non-Oregonians.
Take a look at some of the changes in Oregon laws because of our work:
SB 941: Felons and domestic abusers can no longer buy guns with no questions asked.
SB 525: Domestic violence offenders and people subject to domestic abuse restraining orders are barred from possessing guns.
SB 385: Judges can prohibit guns in their courtrooms.
That's just three of thirty bills Ceasefire Oregon took a position on and followed during the legislative session. While we worked with other organizations on SB 941 and HB 3039, no other gun violence prevention organization in Oregon is active on all firearms-related bills. You can read the rest of the bills here.
Ceasefire Oregon's legislative work helps make Oregonians safer from gun violence. We help set the agenda and create strategies for other states to pass effective gun safety legislation. Thank you for your unwavering vision of an Oregon free of gun violence.
Portland Mayor Hales Declares June 19 to be ASK (Asking Saves Kids) Day in Portland
Ceasefire Oregon’s opposition is based on six major points:
- 1. Oregon’s lax CHL training requirements would allow poorly trained, out-of-state CHL holders to carry loaded, hidden guns in Oregon.
- -Seven states, including Texas, require shooting competency. Oregon does not.1, 7
-An Oregon CHL applicant is not even required to touch a gun to receive an Oregon CHL.
-Delaware and Texas requires instruction on proper handling and storage of guns and ammunition.2, 7 Oregon does not.
-Some states require CHL training to include instruction in techniques for avoiding a criminal attack or how to manage a violent confrontation.2, 7 Oregon does not.
2. Concealed handgun licenses are NOT like a driver's license.
-Driver's licenses ensure a uniform standard of knowledge throughout all states. However, different states have different standards for CHL training requirements.
-Some states do not require any training or testing to obtain a CHL while driver's licenses require training and testing in all states.
3. A CHL is not a guarantee of lawful behavior.
-Since 2007, 743 people have been shot to death by someone legally permitted to carry a concealed gun.3
-In the same time period, 29 mass shootings have been committed by CHL holders.3
-Also, 17 law enforcement officers have been killed by CHL holders.3
4. Some states have issued CHLs to felons.
-Florida issued 1,400 concealed carry permits to felons in 2007 alone.4
-Between 2007 and 2011, North Carolina issued 2,400 concealed carry permits to people convicted of misdemeanor crimes or felonies.5
5. Reciprocity would pose serious challenges to law enforcement.
-The increased number of individuals carrying concealed guns in public places would pose substantial complications for Oregon law enforcement agencies.
-In addition to confronting potentially large numbers of travelers packing heat with little or not training or knowledge of the relevant state firearms laws, law enforecement would be further challenged by the difficulty of verifying that any individual bearing an out-of-state CHL is legally allowed to carry a gun in public.
-Some state permit cards do not contain the permit holder's photograph, looking more like library cards than official documents authorizing the carrying of a hidden, loaded firearm.
-In order to confirm that an individual's CHL is authentic, law enforcement would have to contact the issuing agency in the permit holder's state, because there is no nationwide database for CHL holders.
-Not every state has a statewide database of permit holders. Colorado, for example, prohibits the creation of a statewide database, while Maine does not require locally-issued permits to be reported to its state system.6
6. HB 3093 will not help most Oregonians.
-California does not have reciprocity, so Oregonians cannot carry concealed in our most populous neighboring state.
-Washington is not eligible because it does not require CHL training.
-Residents of bordering states can already obtain a CHL from an Oregon sheriff.
How does Oregon benefit from allowing more hidden, loaded guns in our state? It doesn’t. The bill’s sole “benefit”—saving some paperwork and perhaps a few dollars in CHL fees, for those few people—is far outweighed by the risk of having poorly trained CHL holders from other states carrying loaded, concealed handguns on our streets, in our parks and even into our Capitol building which has a chilling effect on Oregonians’ right to free speech.
HB 3093A places a great deal of risk on Oregonians simply to extend a courtesy to a few.
1. States requiring live firing as part of the firearm training component of the law are Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas. http://smartgunlaws.org/concealed-weapons-permitting-policy-summary/
4. Megan O’Matz and John Maines, “License to Carry: Florida’s Flawed Concealed Weapon Law,” Sun Sentinel, January 28, 2007, available at http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2007-01-28/news/0701270316_1_gun-licensing-system
5. Michael Luo, “Guns in Public, and Out of Sight,” The New York Times, December 26, 2011, available at http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/27/us/more-concealed-guns-and-some-are-in-the-wrong-hands.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
6. Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-12-206(3)(b)(I); Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 25, § 2006.
Concealed handgun license training required by some other states but not Oregon:
Live-fire training and proficiency
Training in conflict management and reduction
Training in avoidance of a criminal attack
Instruction on proper handling and storage of guns and ammunition, including the storage and handling of guns and ammunition around children,
Requiring a person to be of good character (Delaware requirement)
In addition, some states allow sheriffs “may issue” rather than “shall issue” discretion when issuing a CHL. That discretion helps keep guns away from people who are known to local sheriffs as having potential problems with mental health or domestic violence. Oregon changed its CHL laws from “may issue” to “shall issue” in 1989, therefore, Oregon sheriffs no longer have that discretion.