By Joe Baker
Chicago Mayor Richard Daley is moving fast in Springfield to pass legislation to outlaw guns and gun shows in Illinois. The Illinois State Rifle Association, which is opposed to the plan, said the Senate bill is already on the Senate floor and has had its second reading.
The measures in question are: Senate Bill 1195 and House Bill 2532. There also is House Bill 2356, which would ban all gun shows in the state.
Richard Pearson is the president of the ISRA. Asked how he knows these are Mayor Daleys proposals, he said: The people carrying (sponsoring) them in Springfield are freshmen senators from Chicago. Mayor Daley is on record as trying to totally wipe out firearms ownership in Illinois.
Pearson terms the Senate bill the most sweeping gun ban in Illinois history. It would ban all shotguns, except the venerable 4-10, all guns of .50 caliber or larger bore, all semi-
automatics, whether rifles or pistols.
They say they want to get rid of Uzzis and such weapons. They are fully automatic and have been banned since 1934. If theyre trying to get at gangbangers, why are they picking on hunters and sportsmen? Pearson asked.
The bill, if passed, also would ban all modern blackpowder weapons and would prohibit any magazines holding more than 11 rounds. The Senate measure also outlaws the manufacture, possession, sale and transfer of AR-15s, M1As, FALsall target riflesand upper and lower receivers.
HB 2532 would require local and state police to keep a registry of all firearms purchases and then set up regional offices to track gun owners. The bill also would allow unlimited warrantless searches of gun shops and copying of dealer records. If you purchased a gun in the last two years, your information would be placed in a permanent database.
Another requirement of these bills is that firearms owners must turn in their weapons to police or destroy them or remove them from Illinois within 90 days. If an owner fails to do so, under these proposed laws, he or she can be charged with a felony. Pearson said such a person could be given a seven-year sentence for each banned weapon and magazine.
There appear to be constitutional questions involved in these bills. Constitutional does not bother these people, Pearson said. Of course, you cant try a bill until it is passed.
Pearson said the push on Daleys part to pass these bills is impressive. Its amazing how many people he puts on the floor. He has 16 lobbyists, Pearson said.
Anyone opposed to these bills is urged to quickly contact their state senator and representative and tell them to vote against them. More information is available at the association Web site, www.ilra.org