Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) Wants to Repeal Gun-Free School Zones Act


Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) has relaunched the Congressional Second Amendment Caucus, as I reported last month. Today he announces the re-introduction of an old Ron Paul bill to further the Caucus' goals, this one to repeal the Gun-Free School Zones Act of 1990 (as amended after aspects of the original bill were declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court under the Commerce Clause in U.S. v. Lopez. The usual handwaving about how the guns affected by law must have moved in or just "affected" interstate commerce was added in 1996.).

Gage Skidmore

This Massie bill, H.R. 34, is being called the "Safe Students Act."

From a press release draft emailed from his office today:

"Gun-free school zones are ineffective. They make people less safe by inviting criminals into target-rich, no-risk environments," said Massie. "Gun-free zones prevent law-abiding citizens from protecting themselves, and create vulnerable populations that are targeted by criminals."

The Safe Students Act has garnered the support of three major gun organizations: National Association for Gun Rights, Gun Owners of America, and the National Rifle Association…

Cosponsors include: Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Rep. James Comer (R-KY), Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA), and Rep. Brian Babin (R-TX).

Gun free zones are clearly not going to prevent anyone with the plan or intent of committing violent mayhem with a gun, and if we assume any rationality on the part of such a would-be spree killer, one can assume on the margin the promise of a zone where the law-abiding have legally been disarmed increases the likelihood of attracting such a killer.

It's conceivable that not having a gun around might prevent some sudden act of momentary anger from turning tragic in some imagined case. But as Jacob Sullum wrote here in 2015, armed self-defense in public against armed killers can and does happen, though thankfully the conditions under which it might ever need to happen are still vanishingly rare.

NEXT: Rand Paul Reminds MSNBC That James Clapper Is a Liar and Can't Be Trusted About Russia Hacking

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Which states are worst for this? I barely think about gun stuff honestly, because they’re so common here in AZ.

    1. The gun free school zone act I believe is federal law applied to public schools in al 50 states.

      1. State laws only. The federal one was struck down.

    2. Lots of states are getting better. You won’t see it in the MSM, but lots more schools are allowing teacher carry. Down here, the Texas Association of School Boards says that ten percent of Texas school districts have it. College campus carry is also moving.

      Who says nothing changed after Sandy Hook?

  2. Prediction – Mass shootings within 1000 ft of schools up 10,000% in Trump’s America

    1. Did you also predict in 2010 that Democrats would have a super majority for the next 10,000 years? I bet you did. What’s your prediction on bigfoot and space aliens?

      1. Prediction – Hyperion abducted by Space Alien Bigfoot within next 10,000 years

        1. Probably your best prediction ever. At least for the next 9,999 years.

          1. Prediction – Time is a flat circle….just like Space Alien Bigfoot’s reproductive organ.

            1. I have been informed that Bigfoot’s reproductive organ is blurry, along with the rest of Bigfoot. That’s the problem.

              1. Solid references, both of you.

  3. This would be a nice step.

    I would also like to see import restrictions on assault rifles removed.

    An absolute scrapping of the cc permit system. 50 state constitutional carry.

    SBR’s and suppressors removed from the NFA.

    The brady bill and the Hughes amendment repealed.

    Did I forget anything?

    1. “Did I forget anything?”

      Yes. Any restrictions at all on the 2nd are unconstitutional. Shall not be infringed. What does that mean?

    2. I know Hyp, but the above may actually be feasible. Ideally, I would like to be able to order an rpg-7 to open carry when the mood strikes me, I just don’t think that will ever happen.

      1. I don’t think you know what I’m getting at. It doesn’t matter if that is feasible or not. The gun grabbers have changed their strategy. They know they cannot achieve their goals through laws. Instead, they’re going to achieve killing the 2nd through regulatory bullshit and an ever expanding number of ‘secret lists’. Guns will be perfectly legal except for people who aren’t allowed to own guns because ‘xyz’. Soon enough, that will include everyone. Obama just added millions of people to that with his pen and phone. The beauty of this is that most people think ‘well, that I will never be one of those people’. Wrong.

        1. That is where they’re trying to go but a few years of gun friendly court appointments (here’s hoping this is a promise Trump keeps) and that strategy will go down flames for the next fifty years.

        2. I understand about the secret lists. It’s one of the thing Trump supported (no fly no buy) that really turns me off. An incremental approach to gun grabbing has always been the approach the left, (and sometimes the right) has always taken. What I can hope for is a reversal of the swing of the pendulum. The right currently owns the fed gov. I want them to push the pendulum as far back towards firearm freedom as possible before the left inevitably takes over the fed gov again.

          I think people are more informed when it comes to gun rights now. If the political pendulum swings far enough back towards freedom and the proverbial blood in the streets does not run, I think passing restrictions will become more and more difficult, and nullifying restrictions will become easier. This is an optimistic view of the future, but one that I think may be possible.

          The gun culture in our country is large and growing. It is a political force of its own that has to be taken into consideration

    3. I would also like to see import restrictions on assault rifles removed.

      Isn’t this an executive order by Bush 1.0? It could be gone early this year with absolutely no fuss.

      1. I believe so. I would love to see 100 dollar Chinese sks and 300 dollar russian aks in my future.

        1. God, I wish I’d been into guns in the late’80s/early 90s. Seeing those days again would be sweet.

          1. I was too young during the time period, but I have heard anecdotally that at times it was possible to go to local gun store, buy a fee spam cans of 7.62×39 and get a free norinko sks as part of the deal. Those must have been the days.

          2. Actually, what you want is the 1950s and 60s. Western Auto hardware stores and the Sears catalogue carried firearms. You had to be old enough to see over the counter and hand the clerk many fewer dollars. The 80s and 90s were when it was all being taken away, and the future really looked grim. But then came shall-issue carry in Florida, and the tide slowly started turning.

            1. Point taken. Getting dirt cheap Russian and Chicom stuff would be nice though. I’d like to get an SKS but they cost 350-400 bucks for a fairly decent one (online at least).

    4. Did I forget anything?

      Reciprocity with the federal government. I can carry into FedEx and UPS, why not the Post Office. And the Social Security office, and national park visitor centers and restrooms, and non-secure areas of military bases, and national cemeteries, etc.

  4. Massie, you dang Kaintucky hillbilly, people cain’t just be a runnin around with guns in their britches! We here’s civilized now!

    1. He does look suspiciously like the villain from Justified if I squint.

    2. “Oh, you’re an American?”

      “No, sir, I am from Kentucky.”

      Great line from a great movie that has little to do with anything in this thread.

      1. “Live. Die. Repeat.”

  5. Anyone who has a concealed carry permit and is traveling out of state is highly likely to be violating this every single time they get out of their vehicle inside town limits outside their home state.

    Three felonies a day…

    1. Doesn’t even need to be a law anymore. Regulations will suffice. The Obama admin just piled on more than 800 regulations in the last month. Do you know what any of those are? Neither do I.

  6. If I got here earlier, I’d put this in the relevant thread.

    Spot the Not: James Clapper

    1. There is a dire need for sufficient funding for information dominance.

    2. So many times, the Chinese and others get access to our systems just by pretending to be someone else and then asking for access, and someone gives it to them.

    3. Homegrown violent extremists continue to pose the most likely threat to the homeland.

    4. From an intelligence perspective, I think clearly we need to step up our game.

    5. I responded in what I thought was the most truthful, or least untruthful manner.

    6. My response was clearly erroneous?for which I apologize.

    1. 7. Ancient Astronaut Theorists on the History Channel say there is no evidence that Obama is not an alien.

      1. Seriously? 1 or 4….how about 1?

      2. +1 I don’t know, therefore aliens.

    2. I’m going to with #2. That would imply that most hacking is actually just social engineering instead of some clandestine Mission Impossible type scenario. And who is going to pay billions for NSA surveillance, when some guys with janitor’s uniforms could do the job just as well?

      1. This. #2 is way too honest.

      1. Damn, my assumption that Washington bureaucrats always want more money.

        Oh well, it’s still a valuable heuristic model, even if it does rarely lead me astray.

  7. Why is he going with the most divisive, yet least measurable outcome laws first?

    Repeal the entire NFA, or at least parts of it – why does it matter if someone tries to save their hearing while hunting, or has a 14 inch barrel on their long gun? Firmly tie it to something unpopular, by characterizing it as a relic from the prohibition era. Most people wouldn’t even know what they were talking about.

    Then follow up with the GCA.

    Then we can start picking apart the small stuff.

    1. You’re right, he’s overreaching on an emotional issue. They should pick the low hanging fruit first and parlay that into leverage for the more controversial stuff when disaster doesn’t occur.

    2. The NFA is blatantly unconstitutional. I wonder if a few pro 2A supreme court picks would make it possible to get another NFA case to the Supremes and have the law struck down.

      I don’t see anyone of our congresscritters having the intestinal fortitude to repeal the law. Even most gun owners are too OMG machine guns! to argue against it.

      1. Maybe 10 years ago, but I think more people are getting on board with that idea. Look at the wealth of products catering to those who want a non-NFA “full auto” experience. From bump fire stocks, to triggers that shoot on both press and release, to little hand cranks you can install in your trigger guards.

        Also FN recently released a civilian semi-auto version of the M249. Clearly there is a market.

        Speaking of such things. Since hand cranked full auto is apparently OK, do you think GE could sell M134’s through regular FFL dealers, as long as they equipped them with a hand crank, instead of a motor? The gun appears to be striker fired and shoots from a closed bolt.

        The hysteria would be epic.

        1. That would be great, but I believe that there are laws about weapons that can be too easily converted to be full auto. Hooking up an electric motor to cycle the action of a m134 is just a bit to simple for it to be lawful.

          Now, I’m a bit of redneck I’ll admit. If I were to acquire a m134 sans electric motor, I have a spare 5 hp 4 stroke honda motor that I would be severely tempted to install, you know, just for funsies.

          1. Some of the more permissive branches of the Amish do something similar for washing machines and the like. If it’s good enough for God it should be good enough for the ATF.

          2. I want to hook the crank to a wheel on my car and just drive around, firing like a real life Twisted Metal.

          3. I believe that there are laws about weapons that can be too easily converted to be full auto.

            There are at least a few hand cranked products out there, all of them theoretically suffers from the same problem. You can get a kit that legally turns 2 Ruger 10/22 rifles into a crank fired machine gun, and you can buy fully functional reproductions of historical gatling guns that are legally nothing more than (very bulky) long guns.

            Other than being controversial, I can’t think of anything that wouldn’t allow GE to put out a product like that, as long as it was assembled from a freshly manufactured receiver.

          4. For your redneck viewing pleasure: The Redneck Obliterator!

  8. everyday feminism

    When my son was eleven, he came out to my husband and me as gay ? or as he initially put it, “I think I’m finally ready to realize something about myself.” (He’s smart and hilarious.)

    My husband and I are both queer ? more on that later ? so he knew we likely wouldn’t have a negative reaction. We did go out to dinner to celebrate his “realization,” but in a lot of ways, it was largely a non-event.


    ‘Do You Think He Came Out Because You Glorify Gayness in Your House?’

    As I mentioned above, my husband and I are both queer. “How can a man and woman who are married to each other be queer?” people I barely know ask me.

    There’s this cool new thing (actually it’s old and not usually seen as that cool) called bisexuality! I highly recommend it.

    Anyway, we both identify as bi and queer and we make sure that our kids know that. They have even been to a summer camp for kids in queer families.

    I know there’s a ton of privilege in being a straight-appearing couple with kids, but queerness is a really important part of our identities and the way we parent.

    1. Poor kid. It’s hard enough going through puberty, but when you have parents pushing their sexual agenda down your throat you’re sure to in for a rough time.

      1. Well, let’s not pretend this is new or anything like that – parents have been pushing their sexual agenda’s down kid’s throats (ewww) for as long as there have been people.

        Don’t forget the straight parents that hate homosexuality, the parent’s that think female sexuality is too dangerous and so they must be neutered, sex is only for marriage, etc.

        This is just the same old, same old, in new packaging.

        1. Most straight parents usually don’t make a big deal about being straight. And for that matter, neither do most gay parents.

          There seems to be fairly strong 1:1 correlation between attention whore parents, and transgender 7 year old kids.

    2. From Google, I can say that her husband looks like a frumpy woman. So there may be some validity to this.

      1. *Sends image search url to Crusty*

    3. Real question: Bi and Queer? What’s the difference?

      1. You get two votes at the LBGTBBQWTF convention.

      2. You can’t find Bi people outside of college campuses?

      3. Real question: Bi and Queer? What’s the difference?

        Bi is what you call yourself if you want all the victim points for being gay without any of that disgusting homosexual sex–and ‘queer’ has become so broad as to encompass virtually anything. Do you have a fetish or have you ever enjoyed something that people have fetishes about? You’re queer.

        More victim points!! Yay!

  9. I’m guessing most people think of silencers (or suppressors) as those Hollywood things that make guns go *thwip*. Instead of making guns go from deafeningly loud, to not quite as loud, but still pretty damn loud.

    1. Err this was meant to be a response to Holger da Dane.

      1. The rest of the world (while less gun friendly than the US) thinks of suppressors as just another accessory. In fact, in most places they are considered a courtesy to those not so interested in listening to hunting or recreational shooting noises.

        It’s a “good neighbor” kinda thing.

  10. Would be more effective to ban mental illness indoctrination and psychiatry. But ok.

  11. Ya know, the irony about these mass shootings is that the perps generally do it in opposition to the indoctrination they’ve been subjected to:

    Sandy Hook – rebelling against ‘autism’ and being stuck at home with mom because of it
    Orlando – rebelling against Islam and getting married w/ child at a young age
    Chelsea bombing – same
    Ohio State – same plus microaggression indoctrination
    Chicago kidnapping – probably the girl had a crush on the kid (and the boys were jealous) + the ‘ransom’ hysteria that is sweeping the nation

    I could go on.

    1. And then of course Dylan Storm Roof. (Need I say more.)

    2. And CVE indoctrination is the new drug addiction. It’s all the rage in Europe – many of their attackers were subjected to it. Of course in their minds that just means they need more of it. Oh, that should turn out well.

  12. from my favorite grumpy Vietnam vet:

    regarding the recent UN resolution

    This is a non-binding censure of Israel for deliberately moving over 100,000 Israelis just since Obama’s 2008 inauguration and a total of 570,000 Israelis since 1967 into territory captured by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War.
    That flagrantly violates international law, namely the Fourth Geneva Convention, Part III, Article III, Section 49 which prohibits an occupying power from the “transfer [of] parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.”


    1. No one cares about the Geneva Convention.

      Bitching about ‘occupied’ territory here is akin to yelling at the kid who punches the fake-tough bully in the mouth. Basically, fuck the Arabs.

    2. Sure, show me any pre-1948 map where the state of Palestine existed. It seems like they might be occupying bits of Jordan, but the Jordanians don’t seem all that upset about it, since they already conceded those bits to Israel.

    3. If the Palestinians ever followed the Geneva Convention, I might care.

  13. I should be in bed, but I have to post this. It’s a new low, even for Salon:

    The conservative political commentator ? an expert on the intricacies of race relations in the United States ? threw her support behind the KGB Wednesday night before sending a vague tweet on Thursday that alluded to a number worshipped by white supremacists.

    Because she tweeted “14!”, which got the tards all riled up about 14/88.

    Meanwhile, on Twitter, Anne writes

    No, 14 days, moron. See “Obama Countdown Clock” which I’ve been using for my countdown tweets since LAST JANUARY.

    10 seconds. That’s the time the so-called journalists at Salon are unwilling to spend on fact-checking before publishing a story.

    1. Threw her support behind the KGB eh?
      That would be pretty tricky considering the KGB was disbanded in 1991.

      1. You can’t expect a Salon writer to take the two minutes to Google and figure out that it’s the SVR nowadays.

  14. Vox on the kidnapping and beating incident in Chicago:…..ideo-trump

    1. OK editing 101 kids, let’s see if you can play spot the weasel words in this story:

      “During the video, the apparent kidnappers, who appear to be black, laugh and joke while taunting the victim, who is seemingly white, and listening to music. Someone in the video claims that the victim “represents Trump.”

      According to CNN, police on Tuesday found the victim, an 18-year-old who they said had “mental health challenges” and was possibly “in crisis,” walking around the streets. Police haven’t released more details about the victim, including whether he even was a Trump supporter.”

    2. If I had tried to turn that article into my old High School English teacher, the whole thing would be covered with red marks, and a note to see her after after class. She would have verbally bitchslapped me for obviously word padding to get my word count up.

    3. Explainer = “uh, yeah, so like, ok, yeah. Not cool”

    4. All Reagan’s fault for his de-institutionalization policy letting mentally disabled out on the streets.

    5. “But the context matters here.”

      Yeah, there’s the money shot. The poor things can’t be held responsible for their actions! They’re like, traumatized and stuff! By history! (Which history, I’ll wager, they know next to nothing about.)

  15. Gun free zones should be renamed ‘murder zone’.

    1. ‘Gun-Free Zone’ = ‘Unarmed Victim Free-Fire Zone’

  16. Politicians- protected by armed security

    Hollywood celebrities- armed security

    Dunbar/Garda cash delivery trucks- armed security

    Pawn shops- armed security

    Las Vegas casinos- armed security

    Banks- armed security

    Kids at school- nothing

    1. Kids at school- nothing

      If kids are not slaughtered with guns, how are we supposed to convince the public that guns are bad?

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.