The Truth About the “Gun Show Loophole”

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We’ve heard this term again and again when debating proposed gun control legislation. People want to close the infamous “gun show loophole,” to stop people from buying guns without a background check. But what does that really mean? What exactly is the “gun show loophole?” And to what extent do sales from gun shows account for the total firearms ownership? To find out, let’s take a trip back to 1950 . . .

With the sole exception of the National Firearms Act of 1934 (which prohibited the ownership of machine guns and other “military” firearms by anyone without government approval), there were no regulations on firearms. In those good ol’ days, anyone of any age could walk into their local hardware store and walk out with a firearm, not needing a background check of any kind. Guns were even offered as mail order items, able to be shipped directly to your front door.

Starting in 1963, the assassinations of President Kennedy, Malcom X, Martin Luther King Jr. and  Robert Kennedy kicked off the modern gun control movement. The unpopularity of the war in Vietnam, combined with the assassination of a much-loved president and other political leaders, led an entire generation to view guns as objects of evil that needed to be removed from society.

The first major piece of legislation to that effect was the Gun Control Act (GCA) of 1968. Signed into law by LBJ, the act began to regulate the flow of firearms in the United States. Using the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution, Congress instituted a system of approved firearms dealers who were the only people allowed to receive firearms shipped across state lines. Manufacturers could only sell their firearms to approved dealers which required the guns to enter the FFL (Federal Firearms Licensee) system administered by the ATF.

The GCA instituted the first form of background checks for firearm sales in the United States, requiring licensed gun dealers to restrict sales of firearms to certain individuals. That included felons, drug users, and other “undesirable” people.

The GCA was extended by the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act in 1994, which created a Federal database to run the NICS checks that are still in use today. The National Instant Check System created a database of people who were unable to purchase firearms as per the GCA and required licensed dealers to check against this list every time a firearm was purchased.

While licensed firearms dealers were required to perform background checks, private citizens had no such restrictions placed on them if they were selling their firearm to a resident of the same state. Since the sale of the firearm did not cross state lines, the Federal government could not constitutionally find a way of restricting those sales using the Commerce Clause as it had with the implementation of the FFL system.

So, just to recap the current laws as they stand for firearm sales in general:

  • Guns that cross state lines, or come from a manufacturer, MUST pass through a licensed gun dealer.
  • Licensed gun dealers MUST perform a background check on ALL sales.
  • Private citizens are not required to perform background checks on sales between unlicensed individuals that do not cross state lines.

The confusion with gun shows and the legal implications of sales at those events is due to two facts.

First, not all people at gun shows with tables and offering guns for sale are dealers. While dealers are required by law to perform background checks EVEN AT GUN SHOWS, private citizens who are selling their own collection to other citizens of the same state are not. These are the same rules that apply everywhere else. The only difference is that because these citizens have a table at the show, they may appear to the untrained eye to be the same as gun dealers.

Second, while some states have restrictions on firearms purchases that require a waiting period between the sale and when the buyer takes ownership of the firearm, some states remove that restriction at gun shows. As shows are often a large draw for dealers who travel from far away cities, having the buyer pick up their gun from hundreds of miles away after the waiting period expires doesn’t make much sense. This is the only law that is relaxed at such shows.

In other words, the EXACT SAME REQUIREMENTS for background checks exist at a gun show as anywhere else at any time. There is no difference.

Even if the Federal government wanted to institute mandatory background checks, I doubt that the legislation would pass constitutional muster. Using the Commerce Clause to require background checks for guns that cross state lines is toeing the line pretty closely as-is, and while there are ways that it can be implemented all of them require increased Federal control in an atmosphere where some states are already nullifying Federal laws they disagree with. It sets Congress up for a constitutional showdown that might result in a massive scaling back of Federal powers, which they aren’t prepared to accept.

What would the effects of such a law be? According to Senator Ted Cruz’s research, 1.4% of all firearms used in crimes come from a gun show. Other research indicates that the vast and overwhelming majority of firearms used in crimes are either stolen, or purchased legally after passing a background check. So, in other words, closing the “gun show loophole” would not have any impact on the availability of firearms to criminals. None.

The truth is that the “gun show loophole” is a myth. There is no difference between the laws inside and outside a gun show, at least on a Federal level. And while the idea of performing background checks on everyone that buys a gun might sound good, there’s no way that it can be constitutionally mandated in a way that doesn’t annoy the states to the point of near secession. And even if it were, there would be no noticeable impact on violent crime.

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About Nick Leghorn

Nick Leghorn is a gun nerd living and working in San Antonio, Texas. In his free time, he's a competition shooter (USPSA, 3-gun and NRA High Power), aspiring pilot, and enjoys mixing statistics and science with firearms. Now on sale: Getting Started with Firearms by yours truly!

59 Responses to The Truth About the “Gun Show Loophole”

  1. avatarmymc says:

    Here in CA, ALL transactions must be done at a FFL. So this bogus “gun show loophole” does NOT exist in CA. I’ve heard many times Fineswine say this and yet she fails to note to her constituents that Californians are forced to use a FFL for all firearm transactions.

    • avatarRedlyr says:

      Not all transfers in CA have to go through an FFL. C&R long guns and transfers between immediate family members are exempt in CA from having to go through and FFL. At least until January 1, 2014 when they start our long gun registration (like I needed more of an excuse to buy guns this summer…).

      • avatarmymc says:

        Thanks for the correction. Correct, discounting C&R long rifles…everything is through a FFL. On a technicality, this so-call “gun show loophole” doesn’t exist in CA and having these politicians tell the masses that closing this loophole will make everyone safer is full of bull.

  2. avatarRandy Drescher says:

    Maybe we should give em that one, in return for eliminating SBR laws etc. They could go to the bradys & say “we really got em on that deal”, Randy

    • avatarWilliam says:

      We should NOT be bargaining with TERRORISTS. NO!!!

      • avatarSoccerchainsaw says:

        +1

        Remember that changes in the rules made it harder for kitchen table FFL’s to justify maintaining their license. As a result there are fewer FFL’s and most operate brick & mortar stores. They would rather sell you one of their guns than transfer someone else’s. So it’s harder to find an FFL willing and charging only a minimal fee, infringing going on there? I think so.

        There’s the option of opening up NICS to individuals via the internet but think of the possible ways ill-intentioned people might be able to abuse public access to that database.
        Frankly, I’m starting to cotton up to the idea that NICS should be scrapped. It’s a boondoggle (much like Canada’s gun registry) that costs much and accomplishes little. A simple signed form saying the buyer attests that he/she is not prohibited from purchasing or owning a firearm is all that is needed. Violators go to jail. The FBI gets back to the business of investigating crime. The world keeps spinning…

        • avatarRopingdown says:

          And yet CA law enforcement testified the other day that they actually have a backlog of ca 19,000 proscribed people (with a conviction or commitment since purchasing guns) that own approx. 39,000 firearms… but that the agency doesn’t have the funds or manpower to go collect the firearms. It is exactly Joe Biden’s “we can’t afford to enforce the laws.” That’s right, Joe, because you already gave away the citizens’ money and used their credit until there isn’t anymore. And they’re pissed. So you want their guns. Typical. Now things get serious, financially speaking, eh?

        • avatarJohn Fritz says:

          … They would rather sell you one of their guns than transfer someone else’s. …

          That’s a fact. Customer service in your average firearms retailer is lackluster to begin with. Transferring in your brand new 6920 that you bought for several hundred less than the FFL doing the paperwork sells it for (sans tax as an added irritant) does nothing to endear you to the guy behind the counter.

          I used to throw and extra ten or twenty at the owner of the shop where I did my transfers because I liked him and his store. But his gun prices were always too high for me.

          That financial gesture I repeatedly made was instantly forgotten any time I did decide to purchase a firearm from him. Which wasn’t very often.

  3. avatarpk in AZ says:

    “No matter how big the lie..

    repeat it often enough and the masses will regard it as the truth.”

    • avatarSoccerchainsaw says:

      I am constantly amazed at how often that seems to play out. I guess the majority of the public either has the attention span of a fruit fly or has no interest in anything more important than Snookie’s latest escapade and who’s going to get voted off the island.

    • avatarTR says:

      Indeed. Also, “People will believe anything they want or fear to be true.”

  4. avatarAnonymous says:

    1.4% of crime gun sales, not 1.4% of all sales. I believe gun shows are actually less likely to be a source of crime guns (proportionally) than FFLs are.

    • avatarSoccerchainsaw says:

      Funny how statistics work. Since gun shops sell more guns than gun shows do of course they are more likely to be the source of a “crime gun”. And the stores with bigger volume sales are more likely to be a crime gun source than a smaller volume dealer. In Charlotte, NC Hyatt’s was singled out in the news as being the #1 source of crime guns in the region. Well, they’ve been in business since the ’50s(?) and they are a high volume store. They fill out their paperwork and do their NICS checks just like everyone else. Some of the guns were sold 10 or 20 years ago but they still get attributed to the stats for Hyatts. When a drunk driver crashes his 1985 Plymouth Volare into a young family, does anyone care who the original dealer was?

      • avatarSmock Puppet, 10th Dan Snark Master and Misapprehension Correction Specialist says:

        }}} When a drunk driver crashes his 1985 Plymouth Volare into a young family, does anyone care who the original dealer was?

        The tort attorney for the family does. They might be a deep-pockets party to the negligence lawsuit they file, along with the manufacturer … LOLZ.

  5. avatarRalph says:

    some states are already nullifying Federal laws they disagree with

    And god bless ‘em for doing so, but it’s mostly symbolic. If the Feds have a predicate such as the Commerce Clause to support a law, then the Supremacy Clause makes the federal rule the supreme law of the land, and the state law turns into nothing.

    However, states can allocate their scarce resources in ways that they alone see fit. If that means that states refuse to allocate police resources to enforce stupid federal gun laws, then the feds will have to carry the entire burden alone. I don’t think that the ATF and FBI have the resources to deal with massive resistance by hundreds of thousands of gun owners.

    Sure, the feds will create some high profile cases (Ruby Ridge anyone?) and murder a few more innocent women and children, because that’s what they do. Which will turn the tide in our favor.

    Randy Weaver was a nasty little white supremacist pr!ck. The feds murdered his wife, son, infant child and dog (because shooting the dog is rule one in the federal terrorist handbook). In doing so, they turned Weaver into a hero and “brave” agent and admitted baby-killer Lon Horiuchi into a villain. It’s funny how things work out sometimes, ya dig?

    • avatarSoccerchainsaw says:

      It used to be that the victors wrote the history books. With the internet, everybody writes their take on history. Which version will endure? Will either version endure? Will the big EMP wipe out all of modern history?

    • avatarIGotBupkis, Legally Defined Cyberbully in All 57 States and some Canadian provinces says:

      }}} However, states can allocate their scarce resources in ways that they alone see fit. If that means that states refuse to allocate police resources to enforce stupid federal gun laws, then the feds will have to carry the entire burden alone. I don’t think that the ATF and FBI have the resources to deal with massive resistance by hundreds of thousands of gun owners.

      More critically, they have to bring SUIT. If the anticipated Victims of the Victim Disarmament Laws refuse to settle, and force it to court, ANY member of the jury has the power to REFUSE TO CONVICT — no matter how conclusive the evidence.

      Yes: no matter the evidence.

      Do NOT FORGET your power as a member of the Jury to NULLIFY any attempt to prosecute. This has a proud history in the face of unjust laws — a large part of the downfall of both slavery and prohibition was tied to the refusal of juries to convict. It was also relevant to female sufferance.

      KNOW YOUR RIGHTS as a juror, and make sure others do, too:
      http://www.fija.org

      ============
      LOL — captcha is “taxpark money”

  6. avatarMichael McMurtry says:

    There is one reason, and one reason only, that the advocates of civilian disarmament seek to close the gun shoe loophole: registration of all firearms. Furthermore, it would prevent inter-familial transfers of firearms. So when the stormtroopers come ’round to interview you regarding firearms you may have purchased in the past, you will no longer have the option of saying that you sold them via private party. “Why, that’s impossible given the requirement that all firearms be sold via FFL” will say the prosecutor. Systematic criminalization of all firearms owners. give no quarter.

  7. avatarAlphaGeek says:

    Nick,

    The other operating theory behind relaxing the waiting-period rules at gun shows is that they are not regular business operations where one can acquire a firearm on demand. The intermittent nature of gun shows makes the theory behind waiting periods somewhat irrelevant, as it’s statistically unlikely that someone motivated to immediately acquire a firearm because they intend to commit a “crime of passion” will just happen to have a local gun show available to them exactly when they’re looking to buy a gun.

    The problem is that once the opposition goes to absolutism, and therefore even the slightest chance of a “bad sale” is not weighed against the seemingly antiquated duty to not unreasonably impose regulations on the citizenry, NOTHING will convince them that it’s an acceptable risk. They are so urgently desperate to do something, anything, that any act involving risk must be regulated, no matter how asinine the result.

  8. avatarSkeev says:

    I actually wouldn’t feel comfortable with selling a gun, privately, to someone walking around a gun show. To me it is an easy way for someone with a violent background, or history of domestic issues to obtain a gun. I could ask if he has a CCW, maybe he will, maybe it’s invalid due to something happening recently even though it appears in date and valid. Even if it’s a rare chance in a million, I’d just rather not take the chance on a personal level.

    That being said, making my personal restrictions based on my conscious required to be a law is not right either. Do we even have statistics on how many guns used in crimes came from a private sale to make a determination if it’s a problem?

    • avatarRalph says:

      When a crook buys a gun from another crook in an alley somewhere, it’s a private sale. Now if seller crook would have to run a background check on buyer crook, I’m sure these kind of sales would stop.

      Uh, wait . . . .

      • avatarSkeev says:

        On the same token though, a crook selling a crook a gun is likely selling a stolen gun. Since the statistics show that most guns used in crimes are stolen, the transfer of it by any means shouldn’t get put in with a private sale statistic. That would be double dipping.

        And I think it’s obvious that the sale of a gun among crooks won’t be stopped.

        • avatarIGotBupkis, Legally Defined Cyberbully in All 57 States and some Canadian provinces says:

          More critically, if you attempted to prevent the sale by preventing the theft by not allowing the average citizen to own a gun to be stolen, all that would happen is that small garage-level gun shops would spring up.

          You could make highly effective firearms with 1880s technology. What kind of moron thinks you can’t make modern guns with modern technology?

          SERIOUS Computer-operated Milling Machines and Lathes can be had for (on the order of) US$15k-20k for the pair. Drive the price of a gun up to 3-5k each and that pays off quickly, even given the time it takes to learn how to use it (there are currently videos on the process of making your own guns from raw materials on Youtube). Add a modern 3-D printer for things like mags and you’ve got ye own home gunne shoppe.

          The government can’t stop the flow of cocaine or immigrants into this country. It can’t stop the production, distribution, and sale of pot.

          What kind of moron imagines they can stop criminals from getting arms?

          Q.E.D. — No — the wolves of the world will still have TEETH and CLAW. You cannot make the world a safer place by defanging and declawing the SHEEPDOGS.

  9. avatarBurnOut says:

    I have made many of these exact same points in my discussions on this issue with others. Something else worth noting is that a private individual selling a weapon to another private individual (who inhabits the same state as the seller) not only doesn’t HAVE to perform a background check… he has no simple method by which he CAN. The only way that I can think of to do it would be to require that ALL firearms transfers be run through an FFL.

    Don’t get me wrong, I like my FFL, but forcing me to use him for every sale/purchase from even private individuals adds unnecessary cost/complication to the process with very little (if any) benefit.

  10. avatarSteve says:

    The term “Gunshow Loophole” is indeed very misleading and poorly named.

    That said there are a large percentage of sales that occur between private citizens. Some put that number at 40% (based on an old survey from 1998?).

    Whatever the number is, there are lots of guns being bought and sold w/out a background check. Clearly, this is one way that criminals get guns.

    I am fine with requiring checks on all gun sales and I have yet to speak (in person) with another gun owner who has a problem with it, and I make a point of it to ask.

    I have doubts that it is within the power (Constitutionally speaking) of Congress to do that (no interstate commerce here) but it seems to be a rational way of preventing guns from being sold unknowingly (because if you know a person is a felon and you are still willing to sell to them, then clearly you don’t care) to a criminal.

    If the Feds wanted to side step the Constitutionality issue, they could start by opening up the NICS system to all callers. Print the number on all boxes of ammo, all firearms packaging and start a public awareness campaign educating people that they CAN call the number (Toll free!) if they have a question about a potential buyer.

    • avatarRobert M says:

      Could the NICS handle the volume. It took me 2 days to get a gun around Christmas because the phone number for the NICS was giving fast busy’s day and night. In the end my Gun dealer was able to get a free line around 10:00 PM at night were he would handle a bunch of them at once. So in most cases the instance checks that day were requiring people to come back the next day to pick up there items. When they got though they simple did the max they could do.

      Thanks
      Robert

      • avatarSteve says:

        Yeah, if Congress wants BG checks on all sales, they would have to pony up the funds to make it work. That would have to be something written into the law in terms of performance guarantees.

    • avatarMike in CA says:

      Steve,

      In Principle I and probably many others do not have a problem with background checks. I do have a problem when they are abused. Here in CA it’s not a huge issue that I have to do Private Party Transactions via a local FFL. However with a 10 day waiting period tacked on it becomes impossible for me to do any purchases outside of a fairly limited local area. I can’t for example purchase a Yugo SKS or nice M1 Carbine from someone in LA if I live in San Jose because that would require 2 trips of more than 400 miles separated by at least 10 days and not more than 30 days. This has more than once caused me to miss out on opportunities to collect firearms I really want and I’m sure there are many others like me. I’m sure a lot gun owners are OK with the principle but when the reality of universal background checks comes around and it includes measures like the 10 day wait that severely restrict legal commerce in arms most will change their minds. Any requirement needs to address these kinds of abuses.

      Mike

      • avatarSteve says:

        Agreed, the devil is in the details.

        If you had a system where you had Private party NICS checks, plus a waiting period plus a lot of other BS, then it would be intolerable.

        But, its not hard to imagine a system that makes use of modern technology to make the system fast, accurate and easy.

        How about a NICS App for you smartphone? Got a potential buyer in front of you? Ask for ID, take a photo of it with your NICS App, the app scans the image, uploads the data to the NICS system and pings you back in seconds.

        If there was a system that worked like That, I could see a lot of gun owners getting behind it.

    • avatarJay W. says:

      Does TTAG know the most current number (%) for private sales? Personally, 40% seems too high.

    • avatarIGotBupkis, Legally Defined Cyberbully in All 57 States and some Canadian provinces says:

      }}} I am fine with requiring checks on all gun sales and I have yet to speak (in person) with another gun owner who has a problem with it, and I make a point of it to ask.

      Then you’ve been asking some idiots.

      The current system defacto registers ALL guns sent through it. They CLAIM they erase the data after 10 days or so but… if you believe that equine excreta I want you to know I have some LAND for sale that you can make a good 300% — no make it 400% — return on your investment in only 20 — no, make it *16* weeks!! Contact me for information on how YOU can make LOTS of money investing in my land for sale!! :-P

      With the private sale “loophole”, if they do come banging on your door telling you you have to give up your guns, and show up with a list — you currently can say about at least SOME of them, “I have these 3 but those 4 I sold privately… sorry.” Try that with FULL registration and see how quick you wind up rotting in jail.

      No, if they’d set the system up as a simple drivers’ license type check, THEN you could argue for it — because THEN there’d be no connection between the CHECK and the gun being sold (Really: THINK. WHY do they need that information if all they want to do is check to see if you don’t have a criminal background with restricted rights?) or even if any gun was sold at all.

  11. avatarJohn F says:

    At WHAT POINT does the Federal Government make FELLON’S out of
    Law Biding citizens.
    PLEASE read the book:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unintended_Consequences_(novel)

  12. avatarPeter says:

    What prevents you from selling a gun you own to your next door neighbor? The only way I can see to prevent that is to have a registry of all guns and their owners, and conduct spot checks to take inventory.

  13. avatarBrian says:

    Unfortunately it is very possible under current Commerce Clause jurisprudence for the Feds to mandate a background check on all guns. Thanks to the Drug War and specifically the Raich v Gonzales case the Feds can argue that because the total market for guns (including those sold by private parties intrastate) affects interstate commerce they can regulate all sales. Just goes to show that government overreach in one area, even areas you don’t care about, can impact others, and should be resisted.

  14. avatarwhat_about says:

    Nick, I think what you are saying is kind of misleading. I realize you are saying that the only gun regulations *in effect* during the 50s was the ’35 NFA, but you make it sound like there was never any gun regulation at any point prior to that. It ignores that there were black codes to prevent African Americans from owning weapons in certain states.

    • avatarJumbie says:

      I think Nick was focusing on the Federal Level. They have for instance ‘closed the gun show loophole’ in several states I think.

  15. avatarDavid says:

    In Colorado, they already closed said “gun show loophole” at gun shows, but haven’t (yet) touched private party sales.

    Hasn’t stopped a crime yet… As seen in Virginia, Aurora, Columbine, CT, etc etc?

    • avatarPascal says:

      Like many laws around gun control, it is phycological and emotional and nobody wants to hear “there is nothing that can be done” They need a placebo “something must be done” and the safety blanket for the public is a law even if the crimnals do not follow the law the general public needs “something”

      In CT, ALL SALES need a background check but criminals obviously do not follow the law.

      • avatarIGotBupkis, Legally Defined Cyberbully in All 57 States and some Canadian provinces says:

        More critically, (asshole) at Sandy Hook didn’t get his guns “illegally”, unless you call killing his mom and stealing them an “illegal transfer”.

        1) Note I refuse to ack the bastard’s existence by giving him a name. The media is at least partly at fault in this crap by glorifying the names of these bastards.

        2) The notion that someone might steal a gun from a lawful owner and use it in a crime is no more justification for taking the guns of law-abiding citizens than the notion that a stolen printer might be used to commit libel justifies restricting printer ownership. The argument is categorically defective.

  16. avatarMike in NC says:

    Commerce between individuals within a state is an issue for the separate states. Unfortunately the current standard for federal firearms regulatory authority was established with the revised GFSZA which is based on the idea that the Federal government can regulate ammunition and firearms in perpetuity because their very existence effects interstate commerce on an ongoing basis.

    If I remember correctly, there WAS a gun show loophole for a few years after the Brady bill passed. Before the NICS system became active, handgun purchases from fixed-location retailers had a waiting period whereas guns show sales had the waiting period waived.

  17. avatarLance says:

    Very good article Nice you did your Homework very good job.

  18. avatarMike in CA says:

    This thread on Calguns discusses a solution that would provide exactly that.

  19. avatarKirk says:

    Without disagreeing with you, I believe you are underestimating the reach of Congress under the Roberts’ Court Interstate Commerce bit.

    We are in a post-Constitutional era.

  20. avatarSakiri says:

    In California all HANDGUNS that are not Curio and Relic require a FFL, including interfamily transfers. Believe handguns also require a wait. Long guns will require this all after Jan 1 2014, as noted. Curio and Relic(FFL 03 holders only) and those with a COE(exemption cert) have no waiting period on handguns.

  21. avatarCZJay says:

    The Commerce Clause is misused by the way.

  22. avatarR Hampton says:

    It seems to me that there is broad consensus that very disturbed, mentally ill individuals are responsible for most, if not all, of the firearms-related mass murders. Thus it follows that it would be negligent for anyone to give, lend or sell a firearm to such an individual (no different then supplying a minor).

    So I think the relative (non)-importance of the gun show/private seller loophole could best be illustrated by a statistical breakdown of the means by which firearms were obtained prior to mass-murders. Now I don’t have those numbers – would anyone know what they are or where they can be found?

  23. avatarTed says:

    I live in NJ and purchased two long guns from my cousin in PA. I called the NJ State Police firearms division ahead of the transaction and was told the transaction did not have to go through an FFL. All we had to do was fill out an NJ “Certificate of Eligibility” (a form that formalizes the questions that must be answered during a long gun transaction). We each keep a copy and that’s it.

    The only time an FFL would be needed if the NJ resident was selling the guns to someone out of state.

    The situation seemed bizzare – a strict gun-law state allowed the “import” of a long gun via private sale without any required background check. The detective on the phone agreed that it was weird, but that’s the way the laws are written.

    The more I learn about gun laws, the more I realize our lawmakers have no idea what they are doing.

    • avatarMoonshine says:

      Not trying to tell you about your business, but the transaction could have proceeded without a phone call. Not saying, just sayin’.

  24. avatarelnonio says:

    Yes, the same restrictions apply at a gun show as elsewhere. But that’s not the gun show loophole. The loophole is the fact that not all gun sales go through a background check.

    It is only called the gun show loophole because it is more dramatic to see when hundreds of buyers and sellers get together at a gun show and buy/sell without background checks, than when the same hundreds of people do the same thing via classifieds of some gun listing website.

    So, if you want to have a meaningful exchange, you just have to stop getting all hung up about that term, and address the underlying question. 20 years ago, you would have found it silly if I would have argued with you that you couldn’t “fedex” a package because there was no such thing, there was only a company called Federal Express. Well, fast forward, and even Federal Express changed its name to protect it and move with the times. So you should too. Accept the fact that there is a loophole (*IF* one believes that all purchases should require a check) that allows buyers to purchase firearms without background checks, and it’s commonly called the gun show loophole.

  25. avatargabba says:

    if the commerce clause can prevent people from growing their own weed even if it never crosses state lines, or their own wheat and it never crosses state lines, then surely they can apply it to guns. you’re living in a fantasy world if you think the commerce clause doesn’t apply in the minds of nearly every federal judge.

  26. avatarBrian Allen says:

    I its my understanding that the gun laws did not fail in the Ct. shooting. The mother purchased the guns legally and then allowed her mentally disturbed son access to them, witch became her own demise and unfortunately the shooting of many innocent children and adults. She was responsible for the safety of those guns, as the gun owner. It is very unfortunate accident that should of never happened. But the laws did not fail and making it more difficult for me to purchase guns is not going to stop criminals or mentally disturbed individual form getting them.

    • avatarLarryR says:

      Are you saying that a witch became her own demise? Now that doesn’t make a lot of sense. What does a witch have to do with it? Oh! you meant WHICH! I get it. Just because you pronounce the word as ‘witch’ doesn’t mean you need to spell it that way. People have been killed over lesser mistakes. Lol The H in the word IS pronounced. Personally, it sounds like baby talk to me when someone doesn’t pronounce the H in almost all of the ‘WH’ words. Words like which, where, wharf, what, when, etc., and if you use the word ‘wharf’ (which is a structure along a waterway or waterfront for ships to tie up to) and pronounce it “worf”, you are likely to be understood as talking about a Star Trek charactor of that name. Incidentally, if I’m not mistaken, he killed his mother THEN stole her guns.

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