Geoff Metcalf of California is the designated recipient of the CCRKBA Gun Rights Defender of the Month Award for March.
In nominating Metcalf for the Award, John Michael Snyder, CCRKBA Public Affairs Director, stated that, “with so much bad news for our cause coming out of Califor-nia in recent months and years, it does all our hearts good to realize that our brethren in the Golden State are not giving up. In fact, they are fighting back in an intelligent man-ner, in a long-range attempt to re-verse the situation there and to reas-sert and reaffirm the individual right of law-abiding citizens to keep and bear arms.
“While there are a number of solid pro-gun rights leaders and spokespersons in California, one of them, Geoff Metcalf, is among those who truly are outstanding. An ar-ticulate promoter of a right to keep and bear arms constitutional amend-ment in the state, he truly is most deserving of this Award.”
A daily radio talk show host on Hot Talk 560 KSFO in San Fran-cisco, Geoff recently wrote a col-umn, distributed via the internet, pro-claiming that California gun rights activists “have now filed a proposal to amend the California Constitution so as to include language (currently absent) on the right to keep and bear arms…
“In the Joint Legislative Budget Committee analysis of our amend-ment…there are several significant surprises included, which are huge.
“The Committee wrote, „The U.S. Constitution‟s Second Amend-ment guarantees the right of citizens to keep and bear arms and has been subject to significant court review for years. Currently, the State Con-stitution has no equivalent provision.
While the Second Amendment con-fers specific rights regarding the right to bear arms, the courts have allowed federal, state and local gov-ernments to establish prohibitions and restrictions on firearm owner-ship.‟
“The Committee letter states, „This measure adds a new section to the State Constitution that defines the existing right to defend life and liberty to include the right of each person to keep and bear arms for the defense of self, family and home. The measure states that this right shall not be infringed.
“„While individuals may possess and carry firearms, many of the state‟s existing systems for back-ground checks, weapons permits, and law enforcement investigations of individuals with weapons would likely not change.‟
“„Under existing law, state and local government actions regulating firearms have generally been tested under the rational relationship test. This test presumes the legislation to be valid if it is rationally related to a legitimate government purpose. The burden of proof is on the challenging party to show the law is unconstitu-tional.
“„Finally, this measure stipulates that all local government action on this subject is preempted by state law and the amendment.‟
“We have a unique opportunity to stop the epidemic of anti-gun, anti-freedom, anti-liberty socialist Hand-gun Control minions.
“We have routinely and consis-tently seen our rights, freedom and liberty eroded by a campaign of in-crementalism. This is our camel‟s nose in the tent, to reverse the war of incrementalism we have been losing, and we need every warm body we can muster to support and peddle it.
We need each and every Californian to commit to getting 10 people to get 10 people to sign this petition.”
The target deadline to place the measure on the November 7, 2000 election ballot is April 14, 2000. The target deadline to place it on the March, 2001 statewide ballot is June 5, 2000. Since it would amend the California Constitution, the required number of signatures to place it on the ballot is 670,816. Californians should be able to get petitions at most firearm retail stores, gun ranges and sporting goods stores.
Geoff Metcalf, who describes himself as a “Constitutional Conser-vative,” is a retired USAR Lieuten-ant Colonel and a ninth generation officer whose distinctions include Eagle Scout, ROTC graduate, Spe-cial Forces A-Team Commander and Military Police Commanding Offi-cer. He held a wide variety of staff positions at Battalion, Brigade and Division levels. His awards and decorations include Meritorious Ser-vice, Soldiers Medal, Army Com-mendation, Humanitarian Service, Expert Infantryman Badge, Para-chutist Wings, and others.