Domestic violence prevention advocates and gun shop workers in Longview say they性视界传媒檙e pleased with two separate Supreme Court rulings related to firearms.

Rulings in both cases have ties to Texas. One upheld a 1994 ban on firearms for people subject to restraining orders, and another struck down a ban on a firearm accessory used in the nation性视界传媒檚 deadliest mass shooting.

The Supreme Court on June 21 that people who are subject to restraining orders meant to keep them away from spouses or partners can性视界传媒檛 own guns. Domestic violence prevention advocates say the ruling will continue to save lives.

The case, United States v. Rahimi, originated in Texas. had been the subject of a protective order since February 2020 after allegedly assaulting and threatening to shoot his girlfriend, the Texas Tribune reported. He later was accused of five shootings and was charged with possessing a firearm while under a protective order, which was criminalized by the 1994 Violence Against Women Act.

Rahimi argued in court that the 1994 law violated his Second Amendment right to own a weapon. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals 性视界传媒 using a 2022 Supreme Court ruling that changed the way courts determine whether gun restrictions are legal 性视界传媒 heard his case and in February 2023.

The June Supreme Court ruling, however, upheld the 1994 ban. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that the ban is 性视界传媒渃ommon sense性视界传媒 and only applies to people who have been proven in a court of law to pose a credible threat to someone性视界传媒檚 safety.

East Texas domestic violence prevention advocates concur.

The ruling will protect spouses and partners from abuse and save lives, said Jeremy Flowers, spokesman for the , a Smith County organization providing shelter and counseling to sexual assault and domestic violence victims.

The number of women killed by an intimate partner using a firearm in the past 10 years, according to the Texas Council on Family Violence. In domestic violence situations where guns are present, the likelihood of homicide increases 500 percent.

Allowing people who have a history of domestic violence to own firearms puts all people at a greater risk of danger, Flowers said. About 68 percent of all mass shooters have a history of domestic violence, .

In cases of domestic violence, abusers use fear tactics and other means of intimidation 性视界传媒 including firearms 性视界传媒 to control their victims, Flowers said.

性视界传媒淏y removing that tool that abusers use to instill fear for survivors, it gives them more freedom and more opportunity to heal, to leave or to seek resources that may be available to them,性视界传媒 he said.

Hollie Bruce, CEO of the in Gregg County, said the ruling is 性视界传媒渕onumental性视界传媒 for survivors of domestic violence.

性视界传媒淚t prioritizes their right to safety and, in fact, their lives over the rights of the violent domestic violence offenders,性视界传媒 she said.

The ban only applies to people who性视界传媒檝e committed domestic violence crimes and been found in a court of law to pose significant threats to others性视界传媒 safety, Bruce said.

性视界传媒淭hese are the individuals that that most or all of us can agree that we don性视界传媒檛 want to have guns,性视界传媒 she said.

Bruce acknowledged that domestic abusers, who are already lawbreakers, could possess guns illegally. However, the ban gives law enforcement another charge to stack on top of abusers性视界传媒 other charges.

Meanwhile, Longview gun shop employees say the court when it overturned a ban on a firearm accessory called a 性视界传媒渂ump stock,性视界传媒 which allows a person to fire a semi-automatic weapon more rapidly.

Those same employees also say bump stocks are gimmicks and that the ruling won性视界传媒檛 make the country any more or less safe.

The court ruled 6-3 in Garland v. Cargill that former President Donald Trump性视界传媒檚 administration to ban bump stocks in 2018. Austin gun shop owner to reverse the ban.

Sign Up for Newsletters
Select Newsletters to Sign Up For

Bump stocks replace a rifle性视界传媒檚 normal stock. When a person fires a rifle with a bump stock, it uses energy from the gun性视界传媒檚 recoil to bounce the trigger against the person性视界传媒檚 finger repeatedly and quickly, sending more bullets downrange, according to the Associated Press.

A bump stock can increase a rifle性视界传媒檚 rate of fire to anywhere between 400 and 800 rounds per minute, compared with a fully automatic rifle性视界传媒檚 rate of fire ranging between 700 and 950 rounds per minute, .

The Trump administration banned the devices one year after a gunman in Las Vegas used them to fire more than 1,000 rounds into a crowd of people, killing 58 in the largest mass shooting in the nation性视界传媒檚 history.

The Supreme Court ruled that the ban was illegal because the Trump administration didn性视界传媒檛 have the authority to impose it 性视界传媒 and because rifles equipped with those stocks don性视界传媒檛 technically become fully automatic, even though the stocks allow semi-automatic weapons to fire at nearly the rate of a fully automatic weapon.

Semi-automatic rifles and accessories are far more widely available and easier for the public to purchase than fully automatic rifles, which are subject to numerous regulations.

Jim Rodgers, owner of Class III Firearms in Longview, said the court性视界传媒檚 ruling was based correctly on the , which limited the availability of machine guns, and the 1968 Gun Control Act, which regulated machine gun conversion kits and other devices.

性视界传媒淚t does not make the gun full-auto,性视界传媒 Rodgers said.

Seth Smith, operator of East Texas Arms in Longview, agreed that the court was correct to rule that the device doesn性视界传媒檛 make a rifle fully automatic and shouldn性视界传媒檛 be treated as such.

性视界传媒淭he reality is, the law is the law, and if we性视界传媒檙e going to have them in this country, then we should enforce them by the letter,性视界传媒 Smith said.

In a dissenting opinion, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote that rifles equipped with bump stocks should be classified as fully automatic weapons and that the ruling will have 性视界传媒渄eadly consequences.性视界传媒

性视界传媒淲hen I see a bird that walks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, I call that bird a duck,性视界传媒 Sotomayor wrote.

Rodgers and Smith both said the stocks are gimmicks and aren性视界传媒檛 useful firearm accessories.

性视界传媒淲ould I ever use a bump stock for anything? No, it性视界传媒檚 not really useful for anything practical,性视界传媒 Smith said. 性视界传媒淚t性视界传媒檚 fun to have in the backyard, at the range or something like that.

Rodgers said that the court has ruled in favor of people性视界传媒檚 right to bear arms. Smith, however, said he believes the court is 性视界传媒渄oing the bidding of the people that fill their pockets.性视界传媒

性视界传媒淎re they for my gun rights? I don性视界传媒檛 think ideologically they are,性视界传媒 Smith said. 性视界传媒淚 think that they性视界传媒檙e getting paid to be, just like they性视界传媒檙e getting paid to do all kinds of other heinous stuff. But they性视界传媒檙e not on my side as a gun owner.性视界传媒

The Trump administration性视界传媒檚 ban on the device was unusual considering the administration性视界传媒檚 overwhelmingly pro-Second Amendment campaign platform. Rodgers and Smith, however, said they weren性视界传媒檛 surprised that Trump imposed a gun restriction.

性视界传媒淭rump used to be a Democrat,性视界传媒 Rodgers said. 性视界传媒淎nd now he性视界传媒檚 a Republican. He性视界传媒檚 still a Democrat at heart.性视界传媒

性视界传媒淭rump is going to do whatever fills his pockets, and he性视界传媒檚 going to do whatever keeps him in power,性视界传媒 Smith said. 性视界传媒淎 right-wing president 性视界传媒 all that means is a Democrat that says they性视界传媒檙e on your side.性视界传媒

Removing the ban on bump stocks doesn性视界传媒檛 make the country any less safe, Smith said.

性视界传媒淚f someone gets into a mindset where they want to end a lot of people性视界传媒檚 lives, they性视界传媒檙e either going to make up some sarin gas in their garage or they性视界传媒檙e going to go get into a big car and take out a bunch of people,性视界传媒 Smith said. 性视界传媒淵ou can性视界传媒檛 stop people from killing people. You can empower people to defend themselves.性视界传媒

The Associated Press and the Texas Tribune contributed to this report. Jordan Green is a Report for America corps member covering underserved communities for the News-Journal. Reach him at jgreen@news-journal.com.

Report for America Corps Member, 性视界传媒

Howdy! I'm Jordan Green, a Report for America corps member covering underserved communities in East Texas for the 性视界传媒. I'm a native Okie and have been a newsman since 2017. Email me at jgreen@news-journal.com or call me at 903-237-7743.