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NAZI GUN LAW
by Joyce Rosenwald

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"The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort to protect themselves against tyranny in government."

THOMAS JEFFERSON

Many of us living today were not yet born during the reign of terror of Adolph Hitler and his German Nazi party. Yet, every one of us have been told about the horrors and inhuman crimes perpetrated by the Nazis against select groups of people throughout all of Europe. We refer to Hitler and the Nazis as a group of criminals who took over a legitimate government and turned it into a killing machine. We heave a sigh of relief and thank God that kind of thing could never happen here in America.

Germany's Nazis were criminals .... mass murderers. About 12,000,000 civilians were murdered by the Nazis, among them thousands of women and children. Jews and Gypsies were targeted by the Nazis for total extermination. Some died from gassing in concentration camps. Some died from starvation in ghettos. Some were lined up in front of open graves and shot.

In 1928, five years before the rise of Hitler, Germany's freely elected government enacted a "Law on Firearms and Ammunition." This law required anyone who owned a firearm, or who wanted to own a firearm, to make themselves known to the authorities. Anyone who wanted to purchase a firearm had to get a "Firearms Acquisition Permit." If you needed ammunition, you had to get an "Ammunition Acquisition Permit." When you wanted to go hunting, you had to get an "Annual Hunting Permit." Every firearm that changed hands professionally had to have a serial number and the maker's or dealers name stamped into the metal. "Proof of need" was made a condition for issuance of all licenses, not just the carry permit. Mandatory prison sentences were imposed on anyone who professionally sold or transferred a firearm or ammunition without a license. Truncheons and stabbing weapons were subject to the same licensing requirements as firearms, in terms of their manufacture and sale.

As a result of the 1928 Law, all firearms and firearms owners were registered. To take firearms from anyone they distrusted, the Nazis simply did not renew permits. Under the law, their privately created law, the Nazis could now easily confiscate all firearms and ammunition from any, or all, selected groups. The gun law of 1928 had served the Nazis well. It made almost all law abiding firearms owners known to the authorities. The 1928  law on firearms and ammunition helped the Nazis to destroy democracy in Germany, by disarming the law abiding majority, whom they feared.

By the end of 1931, a rising tide of violence, mainly between Nazi and Communist street fighters, moved the authorities to tighten restrictions. Under new regulations, the police could order everyone's firearms and ammunition ... even items not normally used as weapons ... to be put into police custody,

"If the maintenance of public security and order require it."

'1, Fourth Regulations of the President for the Protection
of the Economy and Finance, and on the
Defense of Civil Peace, December 8, 1931

The Nazis came to power legally. They were voted into power. In elections held on March 5, 1933, the Nazis fell short of 50 percent of the vote. Hitler, afraid the public might oust him, didn't plan to hold more elections. On March 23, 1933, parliament voted to give him emergency powers under the Constitution. There were no more elections in Germany until after World War II. The Nazis were far from being popular with the German people. The Nazis knew that many Germans opposed them. The Nazis used the 1928 Law on Firearms and Ammunition to disarm their opponents and to prevent any armed resistance. The Nazis, at most, were a minority of the German population, not the majority. The Nazis operated within the Law. But in Germany, as here, a small private elite group wrote and defined the Law. WHEN YOU CREATE THE LAW, YOU CAN DEFINE THE LAW. IT CAN BE AS LEGAL TO ABOLISH LAWS AS IT IS TO INSTITUTE THEM. Hitler not only came to power legally, but instituted dictatorship legally.

On taking power in 1933, the Nazis did not immediately begin killing Jews. In April 1933, the Nazis enacted a law that kept Jews out of the civil service, universities, and most professions. In September 1935, the Nuremberg Laws were enacted: Jews lost their civil rights. In November 1938, the Nazi SS troops were unleashed against Germany's Jews. Jewish property was confiscated.

On March 18 1938, the Nazis enacted a new, tougher, gun control law. The Nazi Weapons Law (Waffengesetz) ensured that only Nazis and their friends could own or carry weapons, especially handguns. Licenses to sell, own, or carry firearms were required, except for exempted Nazi organizations and officials. Private persons were not exempt, but a Nazi Party Membership Card was proof of political reliability. The Nazi Weapons Law stated that no Jew could be involved in any business involving firearms. On November 11 1938, one day after the SS were unleashed against the Jews, new regulations under the Nazi Weapons Law barred Jews from owning any weapons.

Gun control in Nazi Germany was not difficult to enforce. Being a police state, (operating under the police power, not law) to get a "Firearm Acquisition License", one had to prove one's identity ---- the national identity card) --- and one's political loyalty (nazi party membership card). With strong police state controls over people, (loss of civil rights) gun control was easily enforced. A disarmed population is helpless. Bureaucrats and obedient civil servants "just doing their job", helped the Nazis carry out their plans. Without the help of those good people who were just doing what they were told, the Nazis could never have murdered as many people as they did.

The Nazi Weapons Law of March 18, 1938 is the blueprint for "Gun Control" in America today. America could not make Nazi style gun control work without the documents that Nazi style gun control needs. THE NAZI STYLE GUN CONTROL LAWS WERE ENACTED BY THE FEDERAL CONGRESS AS THE U.S. GUN CONTROL ACT OF 1968. Under this Act: every law abiding firearm owner had to prove that he/she was law abiding; firearms dealers had to record purchases and sales of firearms on behalf of the federal government. Federal and/or state bureaucrats (un-elected civil servants) got the new and broad power to decide who, among law abiding persons, may own and/or carry firearms and under what conditions what type of firearms may lawfully be owned. The vague concept of "sporting purpose" as a way of classifying firearms was introduced. Transactions in ammunition had to be recorded (this is no longer so). Ammunitions that were "legal" were subject to control by bureaucrats.

The Nazi gun control law required nation wide identification papers. Here in America the "social security number" created by Executive Order under President Franklin Roosevelt, is used as a national identifier. The Nazi gun law required a "Firearm Owner Identity Card." In Illinois, a person who wants to own a firearm has to get a "Firearm Owner Identification Card" complete with photograph. This takes 4 to 6 weeks. This "FOID" card is the direct descendent of the Nazi "Firearm Acquisition Permit" (Waffenerwerbschein), concealed carry permits are generally not available. No special permit is needed to transport a firearm from home to a target range if it is locked in the trunk of a car.

In Massachusetts, a "FOID" (Waffenerwerbscheine) card is necessary to own a firearm. To transport a pistol, even in a locked gun case in a locked trunk requires a "carry permit," the direct descendant of the Nazi "Firearm Carry Permit" (Waffenschein). To get this permit, or a permit for general concealed carry, three (3) letters of reference are required, as is a safety course at applicant's cost, a test of one's knowledge of firearm law, and a talk with the chief of police. The chief of police may still withhold the permit. If he agrees to issue the permit, the applicant is then finger printed.

In New Jersey, an applicant must first get a "Firearm Purchaser Identification Card" (Waffenerwerbschein), which requires finger printing. There is a special document for would be handgun owners, the "Permit to Purchase a Handgun." It is valid for 90 days, (extendable for 90 days for "good cause") and only for one handgun. Copies of this permit must be sent to the issuing authority (the local police) and the state police; the seller keeps a copy and the purchaser keeps a copy. Concealed carry permits (Waffenschein) are only rarely issued and are valid for no more than 2 years. A "justifiable need" must be shown, but the term is not defined. The local police chief must approve it. His approval is reviewed by the Court in the applicants county of residence.

For the Nazis, society was the end, individuals the means, and its whole life consisted in using individuals as instruments for its social ends. Individuals rights were only recognized in so far as they were implied in the rights of the state. The state was conceived as an absolute, in comparison with which all individuals or groups are relative, only to be conceived of in their relation to the state. The Nazi state was viewed as an embodied will to power and government. The Nazi's ruled under Police Power. The essential method of the police power is that of regulation, restriction, or prohibition, but not that of taking for public use. This power or means is used where the government does not desire ownership of anything, but wishes rather to control the conduct of individuals. Sometimes regulation is much easier when a license is required. Some courts here in America have held that the taking of a few dollars for licenses, the primary purpose not being revenue, is an exercise of the police power. The courts have held that where "regulation goes too far it will be recognized as a taking." In operation, it may be defined as the power of the state (government) to regulate the conduct of individuals to the point of complete prohibition of certain acts of conduct or even to the destruction of the things involved. This belief in the police power is the theory that animates a number of dictatorial and totalitarian regimes throughout the world today.

The Nazi Doctrine rejected the whole idea of democracy and representative government. Rules of morality do not apply to the state or to its workers when serving the state (absolute immunity). Fraud, treachery, torture, even murder, are right if committed in the interest of the state (Waco, Texas). The people, incapable of governing, must be led by an "elite," a group or party that is able to seize and to hold power. Freedom of speech, press, thought, and religion must not be permitted; they are foolish democratic ideas, like elections and representative government. The state is not simply a means to attain the welfare of men. Instead it uses men to achieve its higher purpose, and that purpose is nothing less than power, power and more power. To avoid war and seek peace is only democratic weakness. War is the very life of the state in Nazi doctrine. As strange as it may appear, Nazi ideas have been imported into the United States, and have found secret as well as open and avowed recruits among both ordinary American citizens and many elected officials. One need only look to Washington D.C., as well as to elected public servants in the Union States, where you can find many supporters of the Nazi Doctrine.

 

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Revised: November 07, 2011