Mental Illness and gun ownership/possession in Texas

shiftyandquick
9:57a, 1/11/11
L
quote:
Texas law prohibits the ownership and carrying of guns by those with certain psychiatric diagnoses, including schizophrenia, delusional disorder, bipolar disorder, chronic dementia, dissociative identity disorder, intermittent explosive disorder, and antisocial personality disorder. In addition, gun restrictions are in place for five years following an involuntary psychiatric hospitalization, inpatient or residential treatment for substance abuse, diagnosis of alcohol or drug dependence, or diagnosis of mental illness by a licensed physician.

http://pn.psychiatryonline.org/content/41/17/6.short?rss=1&ssource=mfc

From the GOA:
quote:
The problem with the veterans began in 1999, when under the direction of the Clinton administration, the Department of Veteran Affairs was obliged to share certain mental health records with the FBI for the purpose of adding names to the national instant check system (NICS). People whose names are added to NICS, of course, are not allowed to purchase or possess firearms.

The health records in question had to do with persons the VA had deemed "mental defectives." Since 1968, persons so adjudicated have been prohibited from possessing firearms. For decades, the common understating of "metal defective" applied to people found not guilty of a crime by reason of insanity. In 1999, however, the Clinton Justice Department unilaterally decided to greatly expand the definition to include the VA's very broad use of the term.

Without notifying the people affected by the decision, the VA turned over the names of 90,000 veterans who "because of injury or disease lack the mental capacity to contract or manage their own affairs." Under the guise of “mental defectiveness,” therefore, many veterans who served their country honorably have lost their Second Amendment rights for life because a doctor or a bureaucrat in the VA appointed someone to look over their finances.

Thanks to routine data dumps, the number of veterans who have lost their gun rights due to common maladies like Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) has increased to an estimated 150,000. PTSD, incidentally, affects as many as one-third of all combat troops.

These veterans were not convicted of a crime, were not found to be a danger to anyone, and they were not afforded any meaningful due process of law. They were added to NICS simply on the basis of the opinion of a government psychiatrist.

To make matters worse, what began under the Clinton administration as a blatant illegitimate abuse of power was codified by a law, commonly known as the Veterans Disarmament Act of 2008, signed by President George W. Bush.

http://gunowners.org/a121010b.htm

So what do you think? Should you lose gun rights if you go to your family doc and are prescribed prozac? If you fall off the wagon and go into detox/rehab for alcohol? If you are a veteran and are treated for PTSD? If you take ritalin for ADHD?

I'm not sure what the exact criteria are in Texas. If anyone knows what the laws actually say, would like to see.
aggie1944
10:03a, 1/11/11
A
quote:
I'm not sure what the exact criteria are in Texas. If anyone knows what the laws actually say, would like to see.


I think you listed it in your first paragraph?
shiftyandquick
10:04a, 1/11/11
L
That's so general, in my opinion, to not be very helpful.

I had thought you needed to be adjudicated by a judicial official to be mentally ill.

In other words, how are people in Texas getting into the NICS database? Surely not every person who has been on an anti-depressant is being entered into the database.
WundreLlama
10:14a, 1/11/11
A
AG
quote:
So what do you think? Should you lose gun rights if you go to your family doc and are prescribed prozac? If you fall off the wagon and go into detox/rehab for alcohol? If you are a veteran and are treated for PTSD? If you take ritalin for ADHD?



Absolutely not. The only way to remove someones rights is through due process. If you are adjudicated "mentally defective," then you can be prohibited from carrying a firearm.

quote:
Texas law prohibits the ownership and carrying of guns by those with certain psychiatric diagnoses, including schizophrenia, delusional disorder, bipolar disorder, chronic dementia, dissociative identity disorder, intermittent explosive disorder, and antisocial personality disorder. In addition, gun restrictions are in place for five years following an involuntary psychiatric hospitalization, inpatient or residential treatment for substance abuse, diagnosis of alcohol or drug dependence, or diagnosis of mental illness by a licensed physician.


Also, correct me if I am wrong, but I thought Article 1, Sec. 23 of the Texas constitution says "Every citizen shall have the right to keep and bear arms in the lawful defense of himself or the State; but the Legislature shall have power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms, with a view to prevent crime." It says nothing about preventing ownership for any reason. Might this be federal law and not Texas law?
No Spin Ag
10:21a, 1/11/11
L
quote:

"Every citizen shall have the right to keep and bear arms in the lawful defense of himself or the State; but the Legislature shall have power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms, with a view to prevent crime." It says nothing about preventing ownership for any reason. Might this be federal law and not Texas law?



So then could the law be interpreted to mean that people have the right to own and bear arm, but not the right to take them out in public unless they are required to do so to protect the country from a foreign invader?

Just wondering since the purpose most people say they need to have guns is to protect the family and the homestead.
WundreLlama
10:38a, 1/11/11
A
AG
They can only regulate the wearing "with a view to prevent crime."

First of all, seeing as how violent crime rates have gone down in Texas since the introduction of the CHL, it would be very difficult to implement something like what you are suggesting.

Second of all, you can defend yourself in public just like in private right? It does not limit where you can defend yourself.
aggie1944
10:50a, 1/11/11
A
quote:
So then could the law be interpreted to mean that people have the right to own and bear arm, but not the right to take them out in public unless they are required to do so to protect the country from a foreign invader?


I imagine I have a more likelihood of being harmed in public than I do inside my home.
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