Illinois rifle association criticizes lawmakers, stores over responses to Florida school shooting
In a special bulletin, the Illinois State Rifle Association (ISRA) urged its members to no longer shop at Dick's Sporting Goods, Walmart and other big-box stores that have discontinued sales of modern sporting rifles (MSRs) in the wake of the Feb. 14 shooting at a Florida high school.
“Once again, we have witnessed jelly-spined big box stores run from a fight,” ISRA Executive Director Richard Pearson wrote. “If they can’t sell a MSR I don’t see why I should buy anything else from them. How about you?”
The March 8 bulletin also skewered anonymous-reporting legislation, HB 1664, recently passed by the House that the group dubbed the “Snitch Act.”
Pearson characterized the bill as “one of the most dangerous bills I have ever read.”
The bill establishes a hot line through which an anonymous caller can report a person they deem dangerous.
“The Illinois State Police are then supposed take a person’s FOID (firearm owners identification) card and firearms, shades of the KGB and Gestapo,” Pearson wrote. “Heinrich Himmler is gone, but Vladimir Putin is still with us. The Russians are really good at this type of clandestine operation. Who knows, we might see Vladimir Putin picking up a few extra bucks moonlighting for the State of Illinois.”
He urged ISRA members to contact their senators and ask them to oppose HB 1664.
The bulletin also detailed the ISRA’s objections to other anti-gun bills under legislative consideration, including measures that increase waiting periods and raise age requirements for certain purchases.
The General Assembly has sent Gov. Bruce Rauner SB 1657, which would license gun dealers on the state level. Dealers are already licensed and regulated on the federal level. Rauner has stepped around questions asking if he will sign the bill into law.