It is illegal for a convicted felon to possess a firearm. Ever. Unless he's had that conviction expunged and his rights restored (very rare). My question is why? I understand law enforcement's desire to have convicted criminals disarmed (and really, many higher echelon cops want us all disarmed). I can understand the desire to punish those who have committed the worst of crimes. But the Constitution and the Bill of Rights don't say anything about excluding those rights for people convicted of crimes. The 2A doesn't say "shall not be infringed, unless you've been convicted of a felony". I'm all for not allowing those on parole or probation for a felony from possessing them (and those who are incarcerated, that goes without saying.) But once a man has completed his sentence, then he should be square with the rest of society. He's paid his dues for committing his crime - or at least he SHOULD have. Once a sentence has been completed, he ought to have all of his rights restored. I'd be fine if the laws were tougher on repeat offenders. You get your rights restored and go back to being a turd, you get nailed with tougher sentence, especially if your crime involved a firearm in some way. But you've either paid the debt to society or you haven't. If a convict hasn't paid their debt, why are they free? There are a lot of crimes that fall under the felony definition that aren't violent crimes. It's easy to think of convicts all being toughened murderers, rapists, and robbers. But what about people like Martha Stewart, Gordon Liddy, or someone convicted of say, copyright violation? Are those people hardened criminals who need to have the right to carry a weapon stripped for life? I don't think so. How about someone convicted of a crime of domestic violence, which depending on the state, can be something as simple as breaking your own property during an argument? That's right - you smash a coffee cup or a lamp because your wife pisses you off, and the cops can (and in some states MUST) arrest you for a domestic violence crime, even if you never touched her. You get that misdemeanor conviction that falls under DV laws, and POOF, your right to ever even touch a gun again is gone. That's a load of crap in my book. You've either paid your debt or you haven't - and if your sentence is completed, there shouldn't be any lifetime strings to the loss of rights. The law makers both on the state and federal level are constantly pumping out new laws to justify their existence, without removing old, outdated laws. The book grows thicker with definitions and crimes that could make any or all of us felons overnight. Should there really be a lifetime ban on firearms ownership because of criminal conviction? If you're that bad of a criminal, and that big of a threat to society, shouldn't you be locked away for life, or given the death penalty?