Second Amendment advocates, including myself have long compared our nation’s attempts to register and control firearms to Nazi Germany and Adolf Hitler, but few seem to know that it started before Hitler. Hitler used what was already in place to disarm his nation.
When the Weimar government of Germany was defeated in 1919, ending World War 1, they were forced to sign the Treaty of Versailles. Germany was ordered to pay huge sums in reparations, but they knew they could not afford to make the payments and the defeated German government feared widespread depression.
The Regulations on Weapons Ownership was passed in 1919 by the German government. The new law stated that all firearms and ammunition had to be surrendered to the government. Failure to do so could result in five years in prison and up to 100,000 Marks fine. Wanting to avoid jail and/or fines lines of people turning over their guns formed in many areas of Germany.
As inflation began to run rampant in Germany, the early signs of depression began to appear. The German government still feared widespread revolts and demonstrations so they enacted the Law on the Disarmament of the People which reinforced the 1919 law. Although thousands of guns were surrendered to the government, thousands more were not.
By 1928, Germany was in the throes of a depression due to hyperinflation. The conservative party was losing ground to the National Socialists and Communist parties. Before losing their majority, the conservatives passed the Law on Firearms and Ammunition that revoked the 1919 restrictions on gun ownership, but did require gun registration and permits. Separate permits were required for owning and selling firearms, for carrying a firearm, for manufacturing firearms and professionally dealing with firearms and ammunition.
The 1919 and 1920 bans on gun ownership were ineffective since the government did not know who had what guns. The 1928 registration and permit law gave the government the information they needed to eventually confiscate the weapons from German homes.
The 1938 German Weapons Act that everyone refers to actually weakened the 1928 law. Instead of registering all guns, the 1938 law only required the registration of handguns, not shotguns or rifles. It dropped the legal age for gun ownership from 20 down to 18. Under the 1928 law, gun permits were only valid for 1 year and had to be renewed annually. The 1938 law extended the permits to 3 years.
However, the Nazi government had ten years of registration records created by the 1928 law. They used those registration records to confiscate thousands of firearms from German citizens and this is what so many Americans point to as the danger of gun registration here in the US.
This past year, Connecticut passed sweeping gun laws that required the registration of all guns that the state defines as being an assault weapon. This includes all semi-automatic rifles, many of which are used for hunting, as well as all high capacity magazines. The deadline for registration was December 31, 2013.
When I sold guns, one of the most popular hunting rifles was a Remington Model 750 semi-automatic 30.06. It was used for hunting deer, elk, bear, javelina, moose, antelope, buffalo and more. My dad used a Remington 750 for deer, bear and javelina hunting and with a clip, it only held five rounds of ammo. Any hunter in Connecticut using a Remington 750 or any other semi-automatic hunting rifle is now required to register it with the state.
Just prior to the deadlines, lines of gun owners, many of them just ordinary people who like to hunt, formed at registration locations. One photo of a line of gun owners has gone viral on the internet and many are comparing it to the 1928 and 1938 German firearm laws, where lines of gun owners formed to register their weapons.
History shows us that those registration lists were used to strip many Germans of their guns under the tyrannical rule of Adolf Hitler. When you take a close look at Obama’s tyrannical rule, it isn’t that different than that of Hitler which leads many people to believe that like Hitler, Obama will use these registration lists to confiscate guns from law abiding Americans. Once that begins, the end of freedom will be upon us.