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Brown on SHARE Act: Don’t Use Our Hunters and Sportsmen to Prop Up NRA’s Agenda

September 13, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.This week, Congressman Anthony G. Brown (MD-04) delivered two statements strongly opposing the SHARE Act (H.R. 3668). While offering support for certain provisions – including one that would expand access to public shooting ranges, thus enabling enthusiasts, sportsmen and women, and beginners to learn responsible and safe gun handling – Congressman Brown pointed out other sections, such as Titles XV and XVI, would unnecessarily ease regulations on silencers and armor piercing ammunition, and weaken state and local gun safety laws. The Congressman further noted that the SHARE Act is no longer about protecting the safety and heritage of American hunters, but has become a vehicle for the gun lobby to boost firearm sales and roll back common-sense laws to prevent gun violence.

Excerpts from Congressman Brown’s remarks

“Mr. Chairman, I want to find a way to support the SHARE Act.

“Our public spaces should be available to those who want to engage in hunting, fishing, and recreational activities that provide economic opportunities for our local communities. Many of which, largely depend on the outdoor recreation industry.

“For example, Title II of this bill is the text of the bipartisan Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act from Congressman Hunter. This Title would allow states to use additional money to acquire land to expand or construct public shooting ranges. Expanded access to centers like this on and off public lands enable enthusiasts, sportsmen and women, and beginners alike to learn responsible and safe gun handling.

“While I support the underlying intent of this bill – I cannot support the SHARE Act in its current form.

“In Title 15, decades old regulations on silencers will be rolled back and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives would no longer be able to register silencers and further – would require ATF to destroy the existing registry. Mr. Chairman, it escapes me why law-abiding hunters would not want their silencer purchases to be recorded?

“Title 16 would protect the use of armor piercing bullets - undoing Reagan era protections - and legalize many types of ammunition that we have tried to keep off our streets and out of our neighborhoods. Title 16 would also allow people to bring assault guns and other weapons through communities where they are currently banned. And would actually make it easier to import foreign made assault rifles. The residents of my state banned AR-15s and AK-47s after the tragedy at Sandy Hook – and now the federal government is overruling these local jurisdictions.

“This bill is no longer about American hunters or protecting our long outdoor heritage tradition - it has become a vehicle to weaken our gun safety laws and boost gun profits as sales are lagging. If the majority wants to roll back our gun laws at the behest of the gun lobby, or tell states that the actions they've taken to reduce gun violence are unnecessary - the should do so openly and transparently.

“We should not use our hunters and sportsmen as a prop to enact the NRA’s agenda.”

View Congressman Brown’s statement on silencers from the September 12 House Natural Resources Committee hearing here.

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