Harvard Law Professor Emeritus Alan Dershowitz argues red flag laws, though well-intentioned, will infringe on a citizen's constitutional rights and set a dangerous precedent, as the U.S. government is not very good at predicting who will commit violent acts.
"To those who favor strict gun control the answer might seem obvious," Dershowitz writes in an opinion piece for The Wall Street Journal.
"They think it's worth it for 100 or 1,000 nonviolent people to lose their guns to prevent a mass shooting. But those who regard gun possession as a fundamental right under the Second Amendment . . . frame the issue differently. They ask: Can the government deprive a citizen of a constitutional right based on a prediction?"
Some states have tried enacting measures called red flag laws, and red flag gun control bills picked up momentum with Republicans in Congress this week following weekend mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, that left 31 people dead and dozens more injured.
A bipartisan proposal by Sens. Lindsaey Graham, R-S.C., and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., would create a federal grant program to encourage states to adopt "red flag" laws to take guns away from people believed to be dangerous to themselves or others.
But Dershowitz suggests temporary gun confiscation "pending a timely due-process review" because, "when government starts taking away some rights in he interest of safety, all rights are at risk."
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