The National Rifle Association and its allies are challenging states’ efforts to take guns away from domestic violence offenders who have been served with civil protection orders.
For all its rage and terror, the episode might well have been prevented. Had Mr. Holten lived in one of a handful of states, the protection order would have forced him to relinquish his firearms. But that is not the case in Washington and most of the country, in large part because of the influence of the National Rifle Association and its allies.
Advocates for domestic violence victims have long called for stricter laws governing firearms and protective orders. Their argument is rooted in a grim statistic: when women die at the hand of an intimate partner, that hand is more often than not holding a gun.
In these most volatile of human dramas, they contend, the right to bear arms must give ground to the need to protect a woman’s life.