I believe that the right to own firearms (and other weapons such as knives) for self protection is a natural right for all. It is a constitutionally recognized right for citizens.
I believe this right needs to be insured for women and members of minority groups including not only racial, religious and ethnic minorities but for LGBT people.
It is one thing to be “tough on crime” but something strange has happened over the last 50 years with the “War on Drugs”. We have wound up with many, many non-violent felons who were arrested for possession and or sales of pot, a drug which is slowly being legalized across this nation.
Unlike the ill conceived Prohibition of Alcohol during the early part of the 20th century the process of legalization has been slow and piecemeal.
It is time for people who have completed prison sentences, probation and parole to have mechanisms to petition for their full restoration of rights as citizens. Including the right to own firearms and vote.
From The International Business Times: http://www.ibtimes.com/gun-restoration-rights-bill-approved-house-would-allow-felons-petition-firearm-1950804
ByJune 03 2015
People who have been prohibited from purchasing or otherwise owning firearms are now able to formally petition the government to restore their right to possess guns thanks to Tuesday night’s U.S. House of Representatives vote, which added an amendment to the annual Justice Department spending bill. Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., introduced the amendment to provide an opportunity for felons and other people who have been banned from obtaining weapons.
“America is a land of second chances. One mistake should not define your future,” Buck said, according to the Hill. “A law-abiding, 45-year-old dad who made one mistake at 18 should have the choice of how best to protect his family or to take his kids hunting. He should have the chance to make a petition to restore his constitutional right to bear arms. This solution is long overdue.”