mobile.wnd.com / By BOB UNRUH / January 8, 2014
In an end-of-week “information dump” often resorted to by political leaders to publicly release information they would like overlooked, President Obama formally has launched his much-feared expansion of the use of mental health diagnoses to crack down on gun ownership.
The Obama Department of Homeland Security already is on record casting aspersions on the mental ability of returning veterans, third-party candidate supporters and people with pro-life bumper stickers – calling them potential “right-wing extremists.” It was also caught, through the IRS, targeting conservative organizations that might be critical of Obama.
So critics of the administration long have warned the move would come. On Friday, it did.
Obama announced that his Department of Justice is proposing a rule change that would “clarify” that being committed to a mental institution – a key red flag under gun ownership rules – would include receiving nebulous “outpatient” services from a professional, such as a psychiatrist.
The president said his Health and Human Services agency is issuing a rule to pierce the privacy protections of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act so there would be “express permission” for “entities” to hand over to the federal government certain medical records – that is, “information necessary to help keep guns out of potentially dangerous hands.”
WND reported six months ago on alarms raised by various groups over this issue.
At the time, the Electronic Privacy Information Center, or EPIC, warned that the administration was widening the door for those subject to a “mental” deficiency definition, looking for ways to send people to a mental institution for “mental defectiveness or mental illness” or “for other reasons.”
“The phrase ‘for other reasons’ is overly broad and vague,” EPIC said. “Although the DOJ has illustrated that drug use is an example of ‘commitments for other reasons,’ the nebulous language would grant the DOJ sweeping authority to prohibit individuals from possessing firearms, a constitutionally protected right.”