- Sep 13, 2012
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What you propose would again only apply to non criminals. You proposed that gun shop owners keep a ledger, with a state to state time period for keeping that ledger. Let’s say a “reasonable”’time period for keeping a ledger is 10 years of record keeping (this isn’t all that reasonable considering if you’ve owned a gun for 9 years, chances are extremely low you’ll commit a crime with it on the 10th year). So I buy a 11 year old gun, and say I got it for some other shop when it was hot off the assembly line. Oh too bad, no record for it there, sorry officer.Well, if it was manufactured newer than the law then you just lost the gun and probably lost your gun rights at the same time. It takes time to catch up. But it does catch up sooner or later. It took about 10 years to get rid of the Thompson MG from circulation after the 1934 Firearms Act. Attrition works.LE isn’t catching them now. How is this policy going to increase the rate law enforcement can stop person to person sales without a gun registry? Here’s how a scenario would go.It is enforceable. Get caught selling that way or buying that way and it's a class 4 felony. And you lose your gun rights for life after a brief visit to the pokey. Very few sales are made that way in this state. And fewer each year.I am linking universal background checks with gun registration because universal background checks are 100% unenforceable laws without gun registration. You’re asking all of society to participate in an honor system with universal background checks. Law abiding citizens will, criminals will not. What is the point of asking criminals to jeopardize their enterprise when they don’t have too? There is no hurdle for them to jump over that they are not already jumping over. That’s the main question with universal background checks.You are linking the gun registration to the background check. It's apples and oranges. As long as the background check does not have the information of the gun itself on the inquiry then it can not be called a gun registration which would be illegal. It only looks at the current background of the purchaser and not what they are purchasing. It would take some mighty tall and difficult legislation to get those two linked together and I don't see that coming anytime soon. You are just trying to cause fear where there isn't a problem.What you are referring is called universal background checks, that’s just the term for requiring a background check for any and all gun transfer. For it to have an effect, ALL guns must be registered. All universal background checks do is make law abiding citizens jump through an extra hoop when a grandfather is giving a shotgun to their grandson. It does nothing to stop how guns are being purchased illegally today. My main point isn’t that it’ll lead to universal registration (although it probably will), it is that universal background checks do not work without gun registration. You have to know who owns what gun, and when that gun gets transferred. There is nothing stopping someone with a clean record buying for someone else. There’s nothing stopping an exchange of guns that only god know where they came from, from changing hands in a dark ally or parking lot. So why is there such a push for a measure that doesn’t even require secondary level thinking to realize that it won’t work? Ask yourself that.
Secondly, what is the point of having shopkeepers keeping paper ledgers of who they sold too? How on earth is that going to help LE find out how shooters bought their guns? Every time there’s a murder with a gun, is the DA going to go on the 5 o’clock news and say “we need all gun store owners to page through their ledgers to see if they can find this guys name.” Who has time for that? And in this political climate there i’d say there’s a pretty good incentive not to announce that you were the person who sold some asshole a gun, and then get demonized for it because you don’t have professor x’s superpowers and were just doing your job. Keeping a ledger does nothing to help the problem outside of making more work for people...who aren’t selling to those who don’t pass background checks guns anyways. For this “ledger” system to work, it would at the bare minimum need to be digital, and LE would either need a rubber stamp supbeana of all gun shops in the area (better hope assailiants didn’t buy their guns elsewhere), or be linked directly to an LE database. This is effectively gun registration, with a middleman. These would be the steps one would need to take to make your propositions actually viable. Also the same point in the first paragraph applies to this ledger scanario as well, this does nothing to stop the selling of guns illegally already in circulation pre-policy, or purchased by someone with a clean record. Again, why the push for ineffective policy?
Third, the stats behind people who don’t pass background checks are pretty damning themselves. I believe out of the 12 or so million denied due to failing a test, only 2% were actually the felon or whatever other crimes failed them. The rest are all cases mistaken identities because they share the same name as a felon, and it actually adversely effects law abiding blacks trying to purchase. The reason being, there is a lot of identical names among ethnic groups of people, doesn’t matter what ethnicity you are. In the case of the US, where some 30% of the male African American population are felons (these are just raw stats here, no implications), there are going to be a lot of black males being denied for no reason.
The gun can be tracked directly to the gun shop that sold it. The Gun Shop Dealer can go in and identify who purchased the gun as long as there is a court order ordering him to do so. The Authorities cannot directly access all his paper files. But the Gun Dealer, under court order, will have to present that one document on that specific purchaser. That's the way it is now and it's a good system. Not Court Order, no individual record produced. BTW, all guns ARE registered at the factory and tracked throughout their history up to and including the Gun Dealers. After that, the tracking ends. What the Universal Background Check gives you is a way to track one specific gun past that through a specific background check with the proper court order. And it's pretty well known it's going to take a Federal Judge to issue that court order and a Local Judge can tie it up if he feels it's not lawful. It becomes a State issue after that. The system already works but we can make it a bit better.
As for Felons, regardless of color, if your state does not allow convicted felons to own guns then take it up with the state. If you are a felon procuring guns outside of the normal methods you are already a criminal and probably need to be sent back to prison. If the State Law is found to be invalid through a Vote or Legislation then that's another thing. I know a number of Felons that would like to own guns but don't. But in this state, you can be a felon that has not been convicted of a violent crime and own a gun after so much time has passed. If your state is different, get it changed if you feel strongly about it. You are trying to make it a Black and White issue, it's not. It's a Felon V Innocent Citizen issue.
LE: “where did you get this gun?”
Suspect: “I got it as a gift 10 years ago from my pops (or insert any other easily conjurable excuse).
LE: “Ok, have a nice day (since I have no gun registry to compare your story to what is reality).
This is why you need a gun registry. If you have a gun registry, LE has something to compare your story too. Were taking about every single gun circulating in the US, not just one type of gun. There are more privately owned guns in the US than there are people in the US. It’s not like scrapping a gun is more profitable than selling it.
There also no way to know someone lost their gun without a gun registry. If I lost my gun hiking in the woods, I’m not going to turn myself into the police station for that if they have no way to know that I owned that gun.