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of these stories (published in Ladies Home Journal, Reader's Digest, Harpers, etc.) know their case cannot stand up to a fair and impartial study of the problem.

S. 14 will accomplish all the good that can be accomplished by means of leg. islation toward keeping firearms out of the hands of criminals, incompetents, and youngsters. From this point the Casey bill (H.R. 5612) will do more actual good by placing the penalty on the misuse of firearms, not on the possession of one.

May I state unequivocally, America is now a great and free country because of guns, not in spite of them.

We can see no reason for the terrific increases in license fees nor the "open ended" possibilities regarding recordkeeping by license holders except for use by the Secretary, or his delegate, to reduce, materially, the number of outlets for firearms and ammunition. Even then a license can be revoked for any imagined reason, or simply at the whim of the official.

Why should the Secretary be empowered to completely eliminate the importation of firearms if it is not intended to keep the average person from being able to acquire one by that method after the registration, confiscation, and disposition of all firearms now in private ownership? If this is not the "intention" why not state specifically under what conditions the Secretary must allow importation by individuals?

S. 14 allows the interstate shipment of firearms to individuals under controlled conditions but S. 1592 completely denies shipment to all except license holders. Is this intended to mean that no one in the United States is capable of purchasing a firearm without the approval of the Secretary, because by controlling the issuance of licenses, with no recourse allowed, the Secretary is most certainly being given that authority.

I sincerely hope this committee will hold nationwide hearings on these bills and in the event this is not possible suggest they disregard S. 1591 and S. 1592 and devote their efforts toward adoption of S. 14 and H.R. 5612. Respectfully,



Sante Fe, N. Mex., July 2, 1965. Hon. WILBUR D. MILLS, Chairman, House Ways and Means Committee, Ilashington, D.C.

DEAR CONGRESSMAN Mills: We have been advised that the House Wars and Means Committee will begin committee hearings on July 12 on pending firearms control measures. It is our understanding that House counterparts of Senate bill 1592 are included among the bills to be considered by your committee.

The New Mexico Wildlife and Conservation Association has very carefully studied Senate bill 1592 and feels that it goes way too far in the control of firearms and that such controls as it advocates will not prevent criminals or even young people from obtaining firearms if they want them. A similar situation existed when the prohibition law was passed, and you are all familiar with the fact that it increased crime instead of decreasing it and did not prevent anyone from obtaining liquor if they wanted it.

The New Mexico Wildlife and Conservation Association at its annual meeting on May 16 adopted the attached resolution opposing S. 1592 and giving the reasons for such opposition. It will be greatly appreciated if you will give this resolution careful consideration.

In view of the charges that have been made in the Senate that the National Rifle Association was sponsoring a lobby against the bill, I may state that I am not a member of the National Rifle Association and the action of the New Mexico Wildlife and Conservation Association is that of an independent organization. Thanking you for consideration of this resolution, I am, Sincerely,


Erecutive Secretary.


RESOLUTION NO. 6 RELATING TO S. 1592 Whereas agitation in certain segments of the Congress to pass bills to control the ownership, possession, and use of firearms, which are among the cherished hereditary rights of law-abiding, patriotic citizens of the United States of America, has greatly increased since the assassination of President Kennedy ; and

Whereas S. 1592, introduced by Senator Thomas J. Dodd, of Connecticut, would prohibit all mail order sales of firearms to law-abiding citizens as well as to criminals, and permits such sales only between licensed importers, manufacturers, and dealers and places unreasonable restrictions upon reputable citizens who may wish to order recreational firearms by mail; and

Whereas if S. 1592 should become law it obviously would not prevent criminals from obtaining firearms for unlawful purposes any more than the licensing and registration of motor vehicles prevents bank robbers, holdupmen, and murderers from obtaining getaway cars; instead it would inevitably increase the crime of breaking and entering to steal the desired weapons; and

Whereas any law passed in the face of such widespread public opposition by law-abiding citizens as exists against the provisions of this bill could not possibly be enforced, the ill-fated prohibition law being a good example; and

Whereas under the provisions of this bill the Secretary of the Treasury, or his agent, would have virtually unlimited authority to regulate the sale of firearms by dealers which could lead to the institution of unreasonably stringent controls and prohibitions over such sales; and

Whereas this bill must be viewed as the first fatal step toward registration and complete control of the acquisition, possession, and use for lawful purposes of all firearms typical of a police state and completely un-American; and

Whereas the provision in the second amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America, providing that the "rights of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed," is comparable to the first amendment to the Constitution which provides assurances for free speech, freedom of religion, of the press, and of peaceable assembly, and is just as essential to maintenance of our inherent freedom as the provisions of the first amendment are; and

Whereas the use for good or bad of innumerable other instruments as well as firearms is entirely dependent upon the person using them and not upon the inanimate instrument and hence legislation should be against the crime and not the instrument; and

Whereas it is essential that the inherent and constitutional rights of lawabiding citizens be safeguarded against the possibility that legislation intended to be against delinquents and criminals does not result in penalizing and hampering patriotic citizens of good repute and S. 1592 contains no such safeguards : Therefore, be it

Resolved by the Neu Merico Wildlife and Conservation Association. That the acquisition, possessiion, and use of firearms by reputable American citizens must not be denied so long as they continue to use them for lawful purposes; be it further

Resolved, That the target for preventative legislation must be the crime, and not an inanimate tool used by perpetrators of crimes, and that severest penalties should be provided for use of a firearm in the commission of any crime; be it further

Resolved, That this association is strongly opposed to S. 1592 for reasons stated above and because it will be the first fatal step toward universal registration and complete control of all firearms and because it appears to be primarily aimed at outlawing firearms rather than punishing the criminal who uses them for illegal purposes: and further because this bill could seriously hamper lawful recreational activities and impair the recreational economy of the State and Nation, infringe upon the constitutional rights of law-abiding U.S. citizens, damage essential wildlife management programs, and unduly extend Federal authority on powers reserved to the States; be it further

Resolved, That a copy of this resolution be sent to the President of the United States, to Senator Thomas J. Dodd, chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency; to every member of that subcommittee; to Senators Clinton P. Anderson and Joseph M. Montoya ; to l'.S. Representatives in Congress Thomas G. Morris and E. S. Johnny Walker; to the Governor of New Mexico, and to such other officials, individuals, and organizations as may be deemed appropriate.

Adopted by unanimous vote of the delegates to the 45th Annual Convention of the New Mexico Wildlife and Conservation Association, Inc., assembled at Alamogordo, N. Mex., this 16th day of May 1965.

Dr. MARVIN H. WILKENING, President, New Mexico Wildlife and Conservation Association, Inc. Attest: I, Elliott S. Barker, secretary of the New Mexico Wildlife and Conservation Association, Inc., hereby certify that the foregoing resoltuion is a true and correct copy of the resolution adopted by the New Mexico Wildlife and ('onservation Association, Inc., as stated.

ELLIOTT S. BARKER, Secretary, New Mexico Wildlife and Conservation Association, Inc.

Tucson, ARIZ., July 15, 1965. W. D. MILLS, Longworth House Office Building, U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.

DEAR SIR: It is our considered opinion that we must stand in opposition to the proposed bills H.R. 6628 and H.R. 6629, since in basic content they are identical to Senate bill S. 1592, to which we have previously expressed our opposition.

The broad scope of these proposed bills could very well open the door to complete disarmament of the law-abiding citizen. We do not believe these bills would serve to disarm the criminal element as the majority of their weapons are purchased illegally. The very nature of these bills could in fact stimulate a greater market for the illegal sale of these arms.

If the laws we have at our disposal now were adequately enforced it is our opinion that such restrictive and all-encompassing bills such as H.R. 6628 and H.R. 6629 would not be needed. However, we wish to emphasize that we are not opposed to useful and workable legislation to correct some of the present ills concerning the overall picture of firearms regulation.

We are opposed to the easy availability of firearms to unsupervised juveniles and to those judged incompetent in their use. Congressman King and Senator Hickenlooper's bill H.R. 7472 or Congressman Udall's bill H.R. 3322 would serve this purpose at the national level. However these bills should in our opinion, include some regulation against the importation of surplus foreign weapons and/or unsafe commercial guns.

It is our purpose and desire to assist in any way possible the sensible and reasonable regulation of firearms, without jeopardizing the rights and privileges of law-abiding citizens. Very truly yours,

NRA Committee Chairman,

Tucson Wildlife, Unlimited.


California, Pa., July 16, 1965. Mr. WILBUR MILLS, Chairman, Ways and Means Committee, House Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR MR. MILLS : Please be advised that the Washington County Sportsmen's & Conservation League with a membership of 2,800 families, is opposed to the Dodd bills, $. 1591 and S. 1592, as they are now written. The following reasons are submitted for your consideration :

Anyone engaged in the manufacture of ammunition would be required to hare a $1,000 manufacturer's license. Apparently this would apply to a club engaged in reloading for its members. Anyone selling any rifle ammunition, even .22 caliber, would be compelled to have a $100 dealer's license. This would eliminate the usual hardware and other small store sales.

A dealer could not sell to a nonresident of his State. This provision, and the restrictions on transporting guns from one State to another, could be unduly restrictive on a great many people who live near State boundaries or those who must go into another State to shop.

A gun shipped for service repairs could only be shipped under the regulations of the Secretary of the Treasury and then only for “authorized” service. Again, burdensome restrictions are threatened.

This bill conceivably could lead to administrative decisions imposing such a burden on the sale, possession, and use of firearms for legitimate purposes as to totally discourage, and thus to eliminate, the private ownership of all guns.

We are opposed to licensing or registering the possession of firearms, because we are convinced that appointed or elected officials should not have the arbitrary power to say who may or may not own a gun. And we know there is no positive evidence whatever that licensing in fact reduces the misuse of guns. The existence of a lawless few must not become an ill-considered excuse to jeopardize the rights of many.

We feel that these bills are unconstitutional and would infringe on the right of the honest citizen to own firearms. We agree that some form of legislation is necessary to keep criminals from obtaining firearms and to keep juveniles from acquiring firearms without parental consent. We feel that this can be accomplished without so many restrictions on the law-abiding gun owner.

Three questions relevant to the construction of good law are:

(1) Does the bill do what it is intended to do? In other words, does it right the wrong, stop the crime, remove the evil from society?

(2) Does it impose an unreasonable burden upon the honest members of society out of all reasonable proportion to the results to be gained from its application to the criminal?

(3) Can it be enforced?

Sportsmen are husbands and fathers and good citizens; they want crime reduced. They also know more about what effect gun legislation will have on crime because in the simple matter of protecting their gun-owning rights they have learned more about it than any other group.

Therefore, we ask that public hearings be held on Senate bill 1592.

Many soldiers have died for freedom. The only pride that can be shown by the remaining members of the family is to continue to preserve the freedomsnot curtail them. Very truly yours,



BROCKTON, MASS., July 15, 1965. Hon. LEO H. IRWIN, Chief Counsel, Committee on Ways and Means, Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C.

HONORABLE SIR: The Ames Rifle & Pistol Club, Inc., of North Easton, Mass., wishes to go on record as being strongly opposed to in its present form H.R. 6628.

We believe that any legislation should be spelled out in plain commonsense terms, rather than have some department head use his or her interpretation at some later date.

As a matter of history, our club was organized in the year 1916 by Mr. John S. Ames, Sr., to further rifle shooting among the citizens of the community in view of the then impending World War, and has been in continuous operation ever since.

We conduct a shooting program each year, using current military arms as prescribed by the Director of Civilian Marksmanship under the War Department.

This communication is directed to you as a result of a unanimous vote taken at a recent meeting of the Ames Rifle & Pistol Club, Inc. Sincerely,

EDW. E. O'BRIEN, Jr., President.


JULY 1965


The measures proposed, with a single exception, seek to substitute the gimmickery of firearms control in place of a badly needed revitalization of an entire judicial system. Existing legislation, if backed by adequate budgets and purposeful supervision, would fill the minor role which licensing and statutory restrictions can ever hope to achieve. Supporters of pending measures (save one) ignore in their zeal the clear evidence that their measures will almost certainly ease the work of the criminal.


Sportsmen's Council, Marine District of New York State, Inc., a council of over 100 sporting and conservation clubs in and around the Metropolitan New York area, recommends that the measures relating to firearms introduced in the current Congress, with the exception of those introduced by the Honorable Hugh Casey of Texas, be rejected as unwise and faulty both in construction and purpose.


The measure (two bills, one relating to the District of Columbia, and the other to Federal jurisdictions arising from interstate commerce) introduced by the Representative from the State of Texas calls for such a long period of imprisonment (25 years) that many will hesitate to aid in its enactment, or to concur in its implementation if enacted. The measure in its current form (if rigidly enforced) could virtually end the commission of a firearm-armed crime; if amended to ease its passage by a cut to provide only half the period of penal servitude the measure would still be quite as effective, and one of the greatest single achievements of this session of Congress.

Little can be said of the remaining measures that would defend them, save the good intentions of their writers. Their worthwhile provisions are lost in a hasty collection of punishments for the legitimate user of arms and ammunition. Such worthwhile portions of these measures as the prohibition (actually, a tax which would effect a prohibition) of interstate commerce in lethal artillery and rocketry are infected by a puritanical blindness to such aspects as the wholesome conduct of the many clubs and associations who use antique cannon in practices and simulated skirmishes noted for their color and pageantry, and their contributions to local economies as tourist attractions. Under the sickly worded sections of this act, we might expect to see Federal oficials snooping out every dwelling place with a rustic appearance, checking each fireplace to see if the antique Kentucky rifle decorating it may not be in fact a cannon, with bore of 0.50 inch or more. Such a great number of other ludicrous sections exist in these bills that they have alienated a large body of citizenry which might otherwise have endorsed them heartily.

The greatest defect of these measures, however, is that their probable result is exactly opposite to that intended. In their zeal to be credited with an anticrime proposal, honorable men have cheapened their names by attachment to measures whose effect can only be aid and comfort to the criminal. The trap of undiscriminating ambition long ago led other lawmakers into the same folly, and this Nation has gained extensive experience in both good and bad firearms legislation. Universally, the approach represented by the pending legislation has proven incapable of achieving the desired result.


Supporters of the measures before us have frequently stated that they follow the approach of making it more difficult for the criminal to buy (or, frequently, "get") a gun. It is therefore germane to these hearings to show what effect this approach has had on crime in the past, and therefore, whether it is, in fact, desirable to pursue the approach represented by the pending legislation.


"Making it difficult for the criminal to buy a gun" has not helped New York City. Indeed, the fact that Mayor Cermak was killed (instead of the intended target, President Roosevelt) with a pistol illegally purchased, over the counter, in defiance of the “Sullivan law," from a dealer located next to the largest police headquarters in the world, should put to rest any foolish notion that the passage of a law alone will end the age-old practice of criminal assassinations. More damning, however, is the fact that “making it more difficult for the criminal to buy a gun” (a succinct definititon of our Sullivan law by its supporters) has had seriously adverse effects upon this city. Those results are:

1. A substantial reduction in the number of firearms in the hands of lawful citizens, with great damage to reputable commerce in arms and ammunition.

2. An appalling increase in our rate of violent crime, and of the importance of violent crime as a percentage of total crime; viz, appended statistics for Violent and total crime categories from New York City Police Department reports. Note that violent crime-murder, rape, robbery, felonious assault, and burglary

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