Illinois Amish Say FOID Requirement Will Limit Hunting

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Illinois, unlike most other states, requires firearm owners to carry a Firearm Owner's Identification (FOID) card in order to purchase a firearm. However the Amish, because of religious beliefs, have been allowed to forego the photograph required on the card. The Illinois State Police want the photograph required regardless of the religious beliefs of the FOID holder. According to the Journal Gazette & Times-Courier, Amish residents believe requiring photos will limit their ability to hunt.

"A lot of the Amish hunt and they usually use squirrel or rabbit rifles to bring some food back home. Their big concern is this means they won't be able to purchase guns or ammo. They have a religious edict against photographs," said Douglas County Sheriff Charlie McGrew, who attended last week's meeting with state Sens. Dale Righter, R-Mattoon, and Kyle McCarter, R-Decatur, and state Reps. Chapin Rose, R-Mahomet, and Adam Brown, R-Decatur, in an Arthur restaurant. Illinois State Police officials also attended to hear the concerns and consider possible solutions.


Ca_Vermonster's picture

It will be interesting to see

It will be interesting to see what becomes of this.

The law is unconstitutional in the first place, in my opinion.  Requiring people to own a license, in order to own a gun?  It's money grabbing at it's best.

I remember a few years ago when this was first enacted.  I read something where some guy got his 10 month old a license, if I recall correctly. :lol:  His grandfather had given him a gun.

If it was truly about wanting to know who owned one, they would denied it.  Maybe they did, but I never heard the outcome, other than I know that you need to be over a certain age to get one now.

Harry D.'s picture


I believe the NRA faught this in the courts, and it was decided that NO FIREARMS was to be registered, a person would not have to carry an ID card to purchase any, as that would be in effect registering the firearm owner.  Just my opinion.  I am totally against any records being kept for firearms, or the owners of them.  The last thing I would want would be to have on record, any reference to me owning 4-5-6 firearms.  If a take over of this country would ever be attempted, this would be their first stop.  At owners of guns to confiscate them.  I may have to give up my ammo, but it would be one at a time, then only part of it would go to them.  Just pray that the Castle Doctrine would be passed in every state.  PA will probably have it in April this year.  Going back for the third & final reading, then to the Gov. and he said he'd sign it if presented to him.  Go Republician.  Again..just my opinion.

WishIWasHunting's picture

Makes my head hurt.

FOID is male bovine fecal matter!  Instead of making the Omish comply, this law should be overturned.  I realize that won't happen, but this is the type of Change that I Hope for. 

I also agree with the other posts the the idea of exemptions for religious beliefs can get a bit ridiculous.  Frequently, when people use the phrase "religious beliefs", they really mean "strongly-held personal beliefs", but that is too cumbersome and does not hold as much clout in an argument.  I strongly oppose laws such as firearm ownership identification, but I do not have to use my religious beliefs in the argument. 

hunter25's picture

Well for starters I don't

Well for starters I don't agree with the whole FOID need in the first place and getting rid of that would take care of everything here. But since that is not going to happen I'm not sure how to handle the situation. I agree with Jaybe that the rules should be the same for everyone. I have been crippled at work for the last 12 years because upper management hired and granted an employee Saturdays off because of religious beliefs. People with many more years of service have had to change their plans around him when they are denied the day off because he gets it first. You should never be harassed because of your religion but it should also not unwillingly change someone elses life either or give you like in this case preferential treatment.

But again in this case it comes back to the card itself and I don't think anyone needs to be subjected to it.

jaybe's picture

Now - that was a pretty low

Now - that was a pretty low move on the part of Ms. Madigan to make that ruling on the last day she was in office! That's the same as we have seen with some of our presidents issuing pardons to known criminals on their last day of office knowing they wouldn't have to face a public outcry the next day. If you can't do something on the first day of your term, don't do it on the last day, either! Of course, that implies that they are people of integrity, which sadly, too often they are not.

Having said that, I am personally inclined to agree that everyone should have their picture on the card - and on their drivers licenses, too. If every religious group could force their beliefs on government, it would be impossible for us to have an orderly society. Please do not understand me to be saying that our society could not be improved by following some religious beliefs (I have some of my own), but where does it stop? Who decides which group get priority when religious beliefs oppose each other? Is every small sect and cult able to have their beliefs recognized by our government? If they all were, it would be an even crazier world than it already is!