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  • 23 Feb 2024 4:35 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Waiting Periods Would NOT Have Prevented Lewiston

    Proponents of gun control are pushing an antiquated proposal to institute a 3-day waiting period between the purchase and final transfer of a firearm.

    What is a waiting period?

    Waiting periods are arbitrary impositions with no effect on crime or suicide, introduce no additional investigative avenues, and only burden law-abiding gun owners without changing how or when criminals obtain firearms.

    MYTH: Waiting periods allow for more in-depth background checks.

    FACT: NO, waiting periods do NOT change the background check process; no additional investigative measures are taken no matter how long of a waiting period is imposed. The FBI still runs the EXACT SAME background check that they run now, without a waiting period. Most background checks are resolved instantly, but investigations can currently last up to 90 days.

    MYTH: Waiting periods reduce suicides, homicides, and mass shootings.

    FACT: There is NO evidence that waiting periods reduce suicides, homicides, or mass shootings. No studies that identify causal effects have been identified by any of the independent literature reviews conducted since 2004.

    The average time-to-crime for firearms traced by the BATFE in 2018 was nearly 9 years1, so the idea that guns are often used in crimes of passion or impulsive actions right after purchase is NOT supported by anything other than anecdotal evidence.

    Only law-abiding individuals will be impacted by waiting periods. Criminals get firearms from illegal sources such as straw purchases, on the black market, or theft. They don’t buy their guns at gun shops.2

    MYTH: We need more gun laws.

    FACT: There are already too few prosecutions of prohibited persons who attempt to buy a firearm from a dealer. Out of 112,090 total federal denials in 2017, there were only 12 prosecutions.

    MYTH: Waiting periods are designed to reduce suicide.

    FACT: NO. The waiting period mandated by the Brady Act of 1993 was only in effect until the National Instant Check System came online in 1998.

    Not to mention, TWO THIRDS of gun owners own more than one firearm.3  A waiting period could not possibly affect those purchasing an additional firearm. First-time buyers seeking a firearm for self-defense would be affected by a waiting period that limits their ability to safeguard themselves and their loved ones.

    There is absolutely NO scientific evidence that waiting periods affect suicide, homicide, or mass shootings.4

    CONCLUSION: A waiting period would not have stopped the tragedy in Lewiston, and it’s an arbitrary measure that is not based in reality. It does nothing to improve the background check system, assess the mental health of the purchaser, or prevent firearms from getting into the hands of criminals. In fact, it imposes a burden on law-abiding individuals who want to obtain a firearm for personal protection.

    Months before the tragedy in Lewiston, Robert Card was showing signs of paranoia. On May 3, 2023, a Citizen Assist complaint originating from a local public school address was logged with the Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s Office.

    In July 2023, Card was admitted to a mental health facility in New York and spent 14 days in that hospital. It is well-documented that Card acted violently and even assaulted a fellow soldier.

    In September 2023, weeks before the shooting, police received a request from the Maine National Guard to do a welfare check on Robert Card.

    The reality of this tragedy is that there were signs for a year leading up to the shooting that Card was violent. He made threats and acted violently. Prior to the shooting, Card allegedly committed several serious crimes but he was not charged. Why not? Repeatedly, Card showed serious signs of danger, and his behavior was largely ignored.

    A reasonable person can conclude: a 72-hour waiting period would not have prevented this tragedy from occurring, especially since Robert Card lawfully owned firearms for years.

    Instead, a 72-hour waiting period would prevent every law-abiding individual who wants to purchase a firearm for self-protection from obtaining one.

    The ability to protect yourself and your loved ones has never been more important. It is well documented that police response times are rising across the country, and in Maine, for a variety of factors.

    If a violent intruder breaks into a home, a 72-hour waiting period could be the difference between life and death.

    Printable PDF with Citations

  • 19 Feb 2024 6:58 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Truth Behind “Assault Weapons Bans”

    What is an “assault weapon”?

    There is no standard definition of an “assault weapon” because it is a fictitious political term. The term has been used to describe semi-automatic firearms that look threatening to those who do not understand the difference between “military-grade” firearms and civilian-owned firearms.

    Contrary to what the gun control proponents would have you believe, “AR” does not mean “assault rifle” or “automatic rifle.” The AR in AR-15 stands for ArmaLite, the company that developed the platform in the 1950’s. (Yes, this platform has been around for decades).

    A 1997 article in the Stanford Law and Policy Review emphasizes that the term assault weapon “did not exist in the lexicon of firearms” before 1989, when it was “developed by anti-gun publicists to expand the category of ‘assault rifles’ so as to allow an attack on as many additional firearms as possible on the basis of undefined ‘evil’ appearance.” This is further confirmed by Deputy Associate Director of the BATF Edward D. Conroy’s testimony to Congress regarding the Assault Weapon Control Act of 1989. There Conroy repeatedly emphasized that “assault weapons” where characterized merely by there “appearance,” and the proposed definition of “assault weapon” that BATF had at the time was based on the firearm being “cosmetically similar” to other fully-automatic firearms. 

    MYTH: Assault weapons bans will reduce violent crime.

    FACT: The congressionally-mandated study of the federal “assault weapon ban” of 1994-2004 found that the ban had no impact on crime, in part because “the banned guns were never used in more than a modest fraction of gun murders.” Rifles of any type are used in only two percent of murders. Subsequent research conducted by the RAND Corporation found no conclusive evidence that banning “assault weapons” or “large” capacity magazines has an effect on mass shootings or violent crime.

                Murder rates were 19.3% higher when the Federal ban was in effect.

    MYTH: There is no “need” for civilians to own AR-15’s.

    FACT: Americans own nearly 25 million AR and AK platform firearms. AR-15s are the most commonly used rifles in marksmanship competitions, training, and home defense.

                Total violent crime and murder has fallen to near historic lows, while ownership of the firearms and magazines that gun control supporters want banned has risen to all-time highs.

                AR-15s and other semi-automatic rifles are not the fully-automatic, military-grade firearms they are often claimed to be by gun control supporters and the media.

                Ammunition magazines that hold more than 10 rounds are standard equipment for many handguns and rifles that Americans keep for self-defense.

    MYTH: “Assault weapons” are used in most mass shootings.

    FACT: Gun control supporters are wrong to claim that “assault weapons” are used in most mass shootings. While the media focus on this false narrative, mass killings have been committed with firearms of all types, and without firearms of any type.

    MYTH: More guns leads to more violent crime.

    FACT: From 1991, when violent crime hit an all-time high, to 2017, the nation’s total violent crime rate decreased 47 percent, including a 34 percent decrease in the murder rate. Meanwhile, Americans bought about 200 million new firearms, including more than eighteen million AR-15s, and so many tens of millions of “large” handgun and rifle magazines that it seems pointless to attempt a count.

    MYTH: Assault Weapons Bans Withstand Constitutional Muster.

    FACT: Firearms that gun control supporters call “assault weapons” and ammunition magazines that they call “large” are among the arms protected by the Second Amendment. Because they’re among the arms that are most useful for the entire range of defensive purposes, they’re “in common use” for defensive purposes, a standard articulated by the Supreme Court in Heller.

    Just last year, the Supreme Court remanded two cases challenging so-called large capacity magazine bans out of New Jersey (Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Clubs v. Grewal 2022) and California (Duncan v. Bonta 2022) for further proceedings because the Third and Ninth Circuit courts of appeals applied the wrong test in upholding the bans.


    -    Federal judge in CA ruled that the magazine ban was unconstitutional and enjoined it from being enforce (Duncan v. Bonta 2023).

    -    Likewise, California’s ban on so-called assault weapons was found to be unconstitutional and enjoined (Miller v. Bonta 2023).

    -    A federal judge in Illinois did the same thing to the state’s ban on so-called assault weapons and large capacity magazines earlier this year (Barnett v. Raoul).

    MYTH: We must ban “assault weapons” because they are often used in violent crime.

    FACT: According to the 2019 Crime in the United States report (based on FBI murder statistics), handguns were responsible for nearly half of all homicides in the US in 2019. Even hands, fists and feet were used twice as often as any kind of rifle to commit murder. AR-15’s are used in a tiny percentage of crimes.

    Conclusion: We don’t blame law-abiding individuals for violent crime in any other circumstance. Surely it would be absurd to ban SUV’s because someone drove an SUV drunk and killed another driver. The same is true here. Why are we penalizing every law-abiding gun owner for the actions of a disturbed individual?

    Printable PDF with Citations

  • 19 Feb 2024 6:50 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Universal background check proposals often impose background checks on all transfers of firearms, with varying exceptions. However, without a gun registry, it’s virtually impossible to enforce the universal background check system.

    MYTH: There are “gun show” and “online sales” loopholes that allow criminals to obtain firearms.

    FACT: Bureau of justice statistics show that 77% of criminals in state prison for firearm crimes get firearms through theft, on the black market, from a drug dealer or “on the street, or from family members and friends. Less than 1% get firearms at “gun shows.”

    ATF has said that nearly half of all illegally trafficked firearms originate with “straw” purchasers who buy guns for criminals. This is ALREADY ILLEGAL.

    All federal dealers - regardless of location (gun show, gun shop, online) have to run a background check before selling or transferring a firearm to a person who is not a dealer. This INCLUDES online sales.

    MYTH: Background checks will reduce mass shootings.

    FACT: Most mass shooters pass background checks to acquire firearms. Robert Card passed numerous background checks to obtain his firearms. In fact, Robert Card was blocked from buying a suppressor months before the shooting because he self-reported that he was in a mental health facility on the form that the dealer is required to review.


    Purchasing a suppressor is not like purchasing a firearm.

    Suppressors need to be registered by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. You need to be approved to purchase and registered as an owner of a suppressor prior to taking possession of it.

    The process: Fill out required BATF forms, get fingerprints done and photographs. Submit the paperwork and pay the $200 transfer/registration fee (tax stamp). When you are approved, the dealer is authorized to transfer the suppressor to the individual WITH ANOTHER BACKGROUND CHECK.

    Robert Card not only passed a NICS background check, but he also successfully obtained a tax stamp ($200 registration fee). The only reason he was denied the suppressor was because he self-reported his stay in the mental health facility.


    -     Requires firearms dealers, manufacturers, and importers to initiative background checks on any non-dealer who wants to purchase a firearm.

    -     Federal law prohibits possession by 9 categories of prohibited persons: [felons, fugitives, persons with qualifying mental health histories, illegal drug users and addicts, illegal aliens, people dishonorably discharged,  people who have renounced US citizenship, persons convicted of DV misdemeanors, and people under certain types of DV restraining orders].

    Can you advertise a firearm on the internet?

    Yes, but the following still applies:

    -     Federal law prohibits the transfer of a firearm to anyone known or believed to be prohibited.

    -     Federal law prohibits a non-dealer from acquiring a handgun outside his state of residence and prohibits a non-dealer from acquiring a rifle or shotgun from a non-dealer outside his state of residence.

    -     Federal law prohibits anyone from transferring a handgun to a non-dealer who resides in another state (with rare exceptions), and prohibits a non-dealer from transferring a firearm to a non-licensee who resides in another state.

    -     Federal law prohibits the acquisition of a firearm on behalf of a person who is prohibited from possessing firearms.

    -     Federal law prohibits anyone from providing a handgun to a juvenile (person under age 18), and prohibits juveniles from possessing handguns, with limited exceptions.

    If background checks are instant, why are universal background checks such a big deal?

    Because it’s not about a background check. It’s about establishing a gun registry which is prohibited by state and federal law.

    Universal background checks are unenforceable without a gun registry because you count on people to “do the right thing.” Of course, law-abiding individuals will. However, criminals will not - we already know that.

    In 2013, the Obama Department of Justice acknowledged that requiring universal background checks depends on… requiring gun registration.”

    Printable PDF with Citations

  • 16 Feb 2024 10:42 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Cancels AR Safety Class

    As some of our members have asked our response to this issue, we will address it knowing that while GOME is a one-issue entity, that of Gun Rights, it is important to be kept informed about how the State of Maine manages its gun safety training, even if it is initially related to the issue of hunting.

    While this is an ongoing issue that will certainly need updating, our members need to know that we are disappointed in the cancellation of this class and look forward to learning more about why they chose to act in this manner.

    AR style firearms are no more than Modern Sporting Rifles that have been deemed legal to own in the US over and over and over again. They are used by many Maine residents to hunt, and it would seem to us that encouraging people who choose to use a legal firearm to hunt, provide for their families, and carry on a longstanding Maine tradition safely would be something the IF&W should be interested in encouraging, not canceling.

    Our interest lies in whether or not the cancellation of this class has anything to do with calls to ban these types of legal firearms, why a handful of complaints dictates their policy and offerings, and if the department is taking any kind of stand on their legal use for hunting - and for our purposes- legal ownership of said firearms.

    We will provide updates with more information as it comes in. Please see the below linked articles for more information.

    Maine cancels AR gun class after complaints

    Cancellation of Maine ‘AR’ Safety Class Opens Questions as to Motives and Legality

  • 04 Feb 2024 9:22 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Gun Owners of Maine's Response to Governor Mills' State of the State Address on Tuesday, Jan 30th.

    These are Governor Mills’ proposals as written before her address. These are how she believes we should address criminals perpetrating violence with the use of firearms in Maine:

    1)Establish an Injury and Violence Prevention Program – establish an Injury and Violence Prevention Program at the Maine Centers for Disease Control as a central hub for violence and injury data that can bring together the information being collected by diverse sectors of our state, including health care, education, social services, and criminal justice agencies;

    2)Establish a Statewide Network of Crisis Receiving Centers – Crisis receiving centers provide prompt and appropriate care to people who are suffering a mental health crisis, instead of leaving that person to languish in an emergency department or a jail, as is too often the case;

    3)Keep Firearms Out of the Hands of Dangerous People-- Close Gaps in the Extreme Risk Protection Order Law, address that gap by allowing law enforcement to seek the approval of a judge, in unusual circumstances, to take a person into protective custody. If then deemed dangerous by a medical practitioner and judge, law enforcement could remove their weapons, pending a full hearing before a court. This change will provide law enforcement with another tool to ensure that someone is taken into protective custody and their weapons are removed;

    4)Address Private Sales – address this issue by requiring any sale of a firearm that is advertised – through Facebook, Craigslist, Uncle Henry’s, a gun show, and other means – to be checked against the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), the same system used by licensed firearm dealers. If enacted, it would ensure that when a gun is sold through an advertised, private sale, it cannot be sold to someone who is prohibited from having a firearm;

    5)Incentivize Private Sellers to Verify a Buyer is Legally Allowed to Own a Gun -- Safe gun transfers from one family member to another, from one neighbor to another, or from one trusted friend to another are common among law-abiding gun owners in Maine. This would not change anything for people who are transferring a firearm to a relative or a friend who they know is allowed to own one. That longstanding tradition in Maine would remain the same. But it would mean that, if you are selling to a stranger, you should visit a licensed firearm dealer to check the NICS system, and make sure they are not a prohibited person, to avoid a felony charge and the possible prison time that comes along with it. 

    During her address, she also added that she would like to change the wording of the current law from willfully or knowingly to adding the word “recklessly” when transferring a firearm to a prohibited person. We would object to the addition of that language as the term “recklessly” is a broad, subjective term that leaves too much up to interpretation.

    Gun Owners of Maine has no issue with items one and two on the Governor's list. People in crisis and/or those seeking treatment need and deserve to be cared for in an appropriate manner, so long as the information gathered isn’t used to centralize gun ownership information in an effort to form any type of registry.

    We feel that Maine's "Extreme Risk Protection Order", known to some as Maine’s “Yellow Flag Law” has no gaps. It needs to be enforced in order to work, when it is utilized it is effective. Anything more stringent is an abuse of power and devoid of due process. 

    Yet again, what amounts to Universal Background Checks is being sought. As presented, the suggestions are unenforceable, do nothing to keep firearms out of the hands of criminals, and infringe on the rights of the law-abiding. Criminals do not submit to background checks if they know they aren’t going to pass them. Firearms are often purchased months to years before being used in criminal activity.

    Some would say that "Universal" background checks aren't being sought, but when the proposal is worded to "encourage" people to get background checks for private sales by increasing the crime from a misdemeanor to a felony, and changing the wording to subjective nonsense, that is indeed what it amounts to.

    This is a list of individuals who passed a background check and then went on to commit a crime:

    Virginia Tech (2007):

    Seung-Hui Cho passed a background check

    Fort Hood, TX (2009):

    Nidal Malik Hasan passed a background check

    Binghamton, NY (2009):

    Jiverly Wong passed a background check

    Tucson, AZ (2011):

    Jared L. Loughner passed a background check

    Aurora, CO (2012):

    James Holmes passed a background check

    Newtown, CT [Sandy Hook] (2012):

    Adam Lanza’s mother passed a background check

    Washington, DC (2013):

    Aaron Alexis passed a background check

    Charleston, SC (2015):

    Dylann Roof passed a background check

    Roseberg, OR (2015):

    Christopher Harper-Mercer passed a background check

    San Bernardino, CA (2015):

    Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik’s neighbor passed a background check (straw purchase)

    Orlando, FL (2015):

    Omar Mateen passed a background check

    Las Vegas, NV (2017):

    Stephen Paddock passed a background check

    Sutherland Springs, TX (2017):

    Devin Patrick Kelley passed a background check

    Parkland, FL (2018):

    Nikolas Cruz passed a background check

    Santa Fe, TX (2018):

    Dimitrios Pagourtzis’ father passed a background check

    Pittsburgh, PA (2018):

    Robert Gregory Bowers passed a background check

    Thousand Oaks, CA (2018):

    Ian David Long passed a background check

    Virginia Beach, VA (2019):

    DeWayne Craddock passed a background check

    El Paso, TX (2019):

    Patrick Crusius passed a background check

    Dayton, OH (2019):

    Connor Betts passed a background check

    Atlanta, GA (2021):

    Robert Aaron Long passed a background check

    LEWISTON, ME (2023):

    Robert Card passed a background check

    If a person has not been flagged as prohibited, a background check will do nothing to prevent them from committing a crime. It is this fundamental difference in approaching the criminal use of firearms that separates us from those who would seek to take away our inalienable rights. The anti-rights crowd would seek to remove all firearms from public use (this is their inevitable goal), leaving criminals armed and the law-abiding defenseless. Please tell us again how background checks curb violence.

    The truth is,Universal Background Checks are a stepping stone to a national gun registry, and we will oppose it vehemently. It was defeated at the ballot box, it was defeated last year in the legislature, and we will continue to work to defeat any such proposal in the future. 

    The Gun Owners of Maine Board of Directors

    If you have any questions email info@gunownersofmaine.org 

  • 23 Jan 2024 11:16 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Last week on Wednesday, January 17th the work session was held with regard to LD 1696, a bill sponsored by Representative Millett of Cape Elizabeth designed to make it illegal to sell illegal firearms and provide a path for the Attorney General or other interested parties to sue in certain cases.

    It originally started as “"An Act to Create a Civil Cause of Action for Persons Suffering Damages Arising from the Sale of Abnormally Dangerous Firearms" but was amended to read "An Act to Establish Civil Liability for the Illegal Sale or Marketing of Firearm-Related Products".

    During the course of the day, the sponsor was nowhere to be found and never did show up to answer questions or provide answers to the Judiciary Committee about the contents of her proposal.

    This bill came out of committee with a divided report (meaning it was not unanimous), with the majority recommending this proposed legislation ought NOT to pass. HOWEVER, when two more legislators who were absent submitted their votes, the majority report is now ought to pass.

    We anticipate a full House and Senate vote when more gun-related bills have been voted out of committee.

  • 23 Jan 2024 11:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    After spending time with anti-gun rights activists in the Maine State House on January 3rd, it is evident that we will have our work cut out for us as we endeavor to educate the people of Maine on the importance of Gun Rights.

    Our strength lies in the grassroots. The everyday gun owners in Maine who are willing to take time out of their day to talk to their family, friends, and neighbors about what it means to live in a free society. About what it means to have the right to defend person and property. About how we achieve that.

    As we enter into the next legislative session the opponents of liberty have outlined their priorities:

    Red Flag Laws that are devoid of due process

    72-Hour waiting periods, after being declared legal to own a firearm, that would leave people defenseless and essentially decimate gun shows in our state

    Universal Background Checks that will require the law-abiding to pay fees to privately sell their firearms while criminals and those with ill-intent continue to skirt the law, and

    “Assault weapons” bans, that at their heart seek to erode the right to bear arms little by little until the law abiding populace is disarmed.

    Please join us in the Fight for Freedom by adding yourself to our mailing list so that you can be kept aware of legislation and hearings, becoming a dues paying member to help us educate our State, and keeping advocating for our Second Amendment rights in our daily interactions with family and friends.

  • 23 Jan 2024 10:58 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Just one day prior to the scheduled work session, the sponsor of LD 1696 submitted an amendment to change not only the title, but the content of her bill. It was changed from:

    "An Act to Create a Civil Cause of Action for Persons Suffering Damages Arising from the Sale of Abnormally Dangerous Firearms"


    "An Act to Establish Civil Liability for the Illegal Sale or Marketing of Firearm-Related Products"

    This would allow the Maine Attorney General to subjectively fine people anywhere from $10,000 to $50,000 for any person who sells, or offers, or markets a gun, ammo or accessories “in any manner that is unconscionable, unscrupulous, oppressive, or deceptive”, promotes modifications of illegal modifications."

    It would also seek to make Maine a less desirable state for Firearms Manufacturers to sell their legal products.

    This bill's work session has been moved to Wednesday, January 17th at 10:00am. There is still time to submit testimony online.

    If you need assistance submitting testimony, please ask at info@gunownersofmaine.org

  • 30 Nov 2023 11:02 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Gun Owners of Maine responds to Senator Angus King's GOSAFE Act proposal:

    Senator Angus King’s GOSAFE Act proposal is not only misguided but dangerous.

    Instead of focusing on curbing violence perpetrated by individuals with mental health problems, he is seeking to infringe not only on law-abiding citizens but on the future manufacture of firearms by “mandating that future gas-operated designs are approved before manufacture”. This would set a dangerous precedent for the government to further dictate how United States citizens defend themselves and the Orwellian undertones are unsettling.

    Senator King’s proposal would make tens of millions of firearms that have already been deemed legal to own by the Supreme Court, illegal. By putting forth “feel good” legislation that on the surface might sound like a solution to violence, when in reality the proposal: further limits what kind of firearms are legal; makes arbitrary magazine capacity limits; requires legal gun owners to return their legally purchased firearms to the government knowing full well any criminals will not do so, leaving the law-abiding defenseless; Senator King is complicit in treading all over the United States Constitution.

    Gun Owners of Maine opposes all legislation that removes the right to bear arms from law-abiding citizens. We maintain that evil lies in the hearts of men, not in inanimate objects, regardless of their capacity or firing mechanism. We look forward to the day when our Representatives in Congress are willing to sit down and have a serious discussion about how to address the mental health crisis that is taking place in our state and country instead of putting forth legislation that only harms the law-abiding.

  • 26 Oct 2023 1:10 PM | Anonymous

    Please visit our Legislative tracking page for the 131st session summary: https://gunownersofmaine.org/131Tracking

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