Illinois gun owners concerned about the state's impending banned gun registry

Following the failure of federal litigation to get temporary injunctions against the state’s gun ban registry deadline of Jan. 1, gun owners in Illinois face a deadline where failure to comply could result in criminal charges overnight.

The laws governing the gun ban requirements are kept on file as an emergency. Modified guidelines addressing a wide range of stakeholder concerns will not be implemented until after the January 1 deadline.

The Southern District of Illinois court had yet to rule on whether to postpone the Jan. 1 deadline as of late Thursday. Judge Stephen McGlynn had stated that he was leaning toward not issuing a stay and instead hearing the case on the merits in the new year, beyond the Jan. 1 deadline.

According to the most recent Illinois State Police figures, 8,143 individuals, or around 0.35% of the state’s more than 2.4 million Firearm Owners ID card holders, have declared to ISP that they own prohibited items.

State Rep. Bob Morgan, D-Deerfield, who helped write the gun and magazine ban that was approved earlier this year, believes that people will comply with the registry requirement or become criminals after January 1.

Illinois gun owners concerned about the state's impending banned gun registry

“They want to be law-abiding citizens and they want to be consistent with state law and they will register their existing legacy weapons otherwise they’re risking their FOID card,” Morgan said in a previous interview. “I think the vast, vast majority of people are just committed to being law-abiding citizens the way they are now.”

Magazines with particular capacities are exempt from registration under the law. However, there are over 170 distinct semi-automatic rifles, shotguns, and pistols, as well as various accessories. By legislation, 50-caliber ammunition must be registered.

With the deadline nearing, Ed Sullivan of the Illinois State Rifle Association says individuals have a choice.

“To comply with this law, you either register your firearm or you move it out of state or you become a peace officer, I guess,” Sullivan stated at the time.

Under the emergency provisions, law enforcement, retired law enforcement, and others in the security sector are exempt from registration. The guidelines also mandate that the gun registry affidavits be sent electronically to the Illinois State Police.

Todd Vandermyde, a gun rights supporter, stated that everyone will have to decide how to comply with the law.

“I happen to be one of those guys who believes that once the government gets their hands on data, it never goes away, that the internet is forever,” Vandermyde explained to The Center Square.

While state attorneys and sheriffs across the state have stated that they will not prioritize enforcement of the gun ban registry, Michael Brown, a firearms instructor in Chicago, believes Cook County police will.

“And so in good conscience, I can’t suggest that people in Cook County, in Chicago don’t register because you stand the chance of losing your freedom and your [concealed carry] license,” Brown went on to say.

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