An Ex-Con's Push To Get Guns In
The Hands Of Non-Violent Felons

By James King. March 21st, 2016

Barry Michaels was convicted of securities fraud in 1997 after investors in an airline he started lost money. "I represented myself," he told Vocativ. "I lost on a technicality."

The conviction made him a felon, which stripped him of his right to vote, hold certain professional licenses and own a firearm. After serving 15 months in prison--and three years on probation--most of his rights were returned; Michaels currently is running for Congress as a Democrat in Nevada, and he's also allowed to vote. His right to own a firearm, like that of nearly all convicted felons, was not.

Michaels is now suing both U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Thomas Brandon, the deputy director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, in a class-action lawsuit to have the right to own a gun restored to felons convicted of non-violent crimes. The retired Nevada businessman, who never owned a gun before or after his conviction, said it's a civil rights issue, not a gun control issue, and that after a felon does his or her time, they should be able to re-join society with the same rights as anyone else. .......

It is long past time that not only should minor misdemeanors sometimes not preclude gun ownership, but, more importantly a non-violent felon who has paid his dues should also be able to regain Second Amendment rights. The distinction between violent and non-violent crime must be addressed.

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