MAIG Tries Desperately to Maintain Relevance

MAIG is at it again, trying to convince people that dangerous weapons[1] are going to fall into the hands of dangerous people[2] leading to more violence, mass shootings, blood in the streets, crop failures, cats and dogs living together. Or something. Their latest release (FBI Data Show Gun Background Checks Still Undermined By Information Gaps Six Months After Senate Probed Flaws) starts out, “Many states and federal agencies are still failing to share records about dangerous individuals with [NICS]” . . .

The update comes six months after gun violence survivors urged a Senate committee to improve the system at a congressional hearing on the 2011 mass shooting in Tucson, Arizona. The shooter[3] had a history of disturbing behavior and a drug arrest record, but passed a background check before buying the guns[sic] he used to kill six people and wound 13 others …

While the antis go on and on about how they aren’t really against all guns and all gun owners, close reading of their statements will often give you glimpses of their real agenda. The shooter had a history of disturbing behavior and a drug arrest record, but passed a background check looks quite reasonable on its face[4], but think about it for a moment.

Although arrested, he was never actually convicted of any crime, drug-related or otherwise. I guess MAIG believes that we peasants should all be considered guilty until proven innocent. Second his disturbing behavior, while sufficient to get him removed from college never actually led to his being adjudicated a threat to himself or others.

MAIG continues to explain just how many states and federal agencies are failing to provide the required records to NICS (mentioning that the VA has provided almost 100% of the federal records; see here for why that might be a problem) before suggesting their fix for the “problem”:

Leaders of the bipartisan Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition urged Congress to pass the Fix Gun Checks Act (H.R.1781/S.436), which would increase incentives for states to comply with federal record reporting targets and require background checks for all gun sales.

Again, for those who don’t believe that such checks are worthless, wasteful, insulting and unconstitutional, fixing gun checks probably sounds like a good idea. But as always, the devil is in the details. So just what are this bill’s details?

Well, one of the first items to catch my eye was in Section 101(b) Penalties. Basically it says that if states don’t toe the line, they’ll lose out on some federal largesse. It sets out specific goals and specific penalties which are applied even-handedly across all states.

Or, not. There is a weasel clause in section (3) which permits the AG to significantly reduce the penalty for states that convince him they’re trying really hard to comply. So who here thinks that this provision wouldn’t be used as a club to punish states that piss off the President or AG? Anyone?

[1] Is there any other kind of weapon?

[2] If they are so dangerous, why aren’t they behind bars?

[3] Kudos to MAIG for not using the shooter’s name; let him rot in obscurity

[4] Not to me since I believe that anyone who can’t be trusted with a gun can’t be trusted without a custodian