That wasn’t the worst Sunday morning news show debate on civilian disarmament I’ve ever seen. Of course, that statement assumes that the push for universal background checks is an attempt to disarm Americans. Which it isn’t. Yet. It’s the precursor to disarmament. The sine qua non of disarmament. Not that most Americans know that. Or anything else about Universal Background Checks—other than it sounds right. Everyone has to have a background check when they buy a gun? Roger that. Now ask “Do you think the government should keep a record of everyone’s guns?” If the NRA et al. can equate universal background checks with a federal gun registry, and events don’t overtake the “debate,” The People of the Gun just might win this battle too. The fact that the argument is getting air time is encouraging. Watch this space.

40 Responses to Push for “Universal Background Checks” Losing Steam?

  1. To be honest I was in favor of background checks until I learned one bit of pertinent information – that 95% of the blocked gun sales are false positives. I don’t mind a minor inconvenience when purchasing a firearm, but if we have to deny the civil rights to 19 people to prevent 1 from purchasing a weapon we should be asking if it’s time to scrap the whole system. Especially when you consider that the 5% can easily acquire a weapon on the black market (universal checks or not). Personally I think that’s probably the most persuasive argument for non gun owners.

      • I heard it from John Lott. Also Ted Nugent. The Nuge can legally own fully automatic machine guns but he’s been denied more than once.

        • Thanks for the laugh. John Lott and Ted Nugent said something that sounds a bit extreme, to say the least, and not only did you believe it but you pass it along as fact.

          That’s why you pro-gun guys have the rep you do. You play fast and loose with the facts.

        • Here you go Mikeb, straight from the proverbial horse’s mouth:

          https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/bjs/grants/239272.pdf

          These are the most recent numbers available (2010).

          Quote:
          “The DENI Branch screened 76,142 NICS denials received from the FBI during 2010, and referred 4,732 denials (approximately 6%) within the established guidelines to field divisions. The referred cases were made up of 2,265 delayed denials (3% of all denials) and 2,467 standard denials (over 3%). The remaining denials (71,410, or nearly 94%) did not meet referral guidelines or were overturned or canceled.”

          Since you seem to need it, I’ll go ahead and translate that for you. 94% of all initial denials sent from the FBI (via NICS) to the BATFE for review are thrown out — they are FALSE POSITIVES.

          94% of all initial federal background check denials are false positives. Not exactly a great record, don’t you agree?

  2. Wait. Since when have the dangerously mentally-ill (having been institutionalized prior) and criminals (convicted felons) had the ability to buy legal weapons? I though the current background check covered this…

    Or is this just another add-on attempt by the anti-gunners to make it more difficult? Hmm.

  3. If “universal” background checks had anything to do with background checks, all the Senate would have to do is open NICS to private sellers. Whether the phone call is placed by an FFL or a private citizen doesn’t matter — it’s still just a phone call.

    Oh, wait. An FFL has to complete a 4473 and keep a copy of it forever. Not so for a private transaction. The G doesn’t want to screen out bad people. It wants a paper trail that will lead back to your guns.

    • That’s my argument; pay me a royalty. Come on – pay up!

      Seriously, though, it would be relatively simple to create a ‘phone or web-based service by which to vett individual sales – free of weapon type or serial number, no less.

      That there’s no mention of a sensible means of implementing UBG is the very best argument against it – at least for presentation to the Prople of the Non-Gun.

      Russ, token Liberal

        • Yeah. It pokes me when RF uses liberal as a swear word, but I shouldn’t have flown off the handle.

          Very few decisions should be made at stupid o’clock in the morning, and e-mail written after midnight should seldom be sent before morning coffee.

          Consider my ass-hat acknowledged and removed, in all head-hanging, sheepish humility.

    • But giving Joe Sixpack a cheap/free way to run a background check on anybody? That sounds like a privacy nightmare. “Hey there, neighbor, how’s that treatment for depression going?”

      I won’t say that I’m completely okay with the State, its agents or FFLs having this power either.

      • If the facility gave only a yes/no, that’d be almost alright.

        Won’t happen, though; that’s not in line with the “for their own good” movement.

        Ewww.

      • Robot Monkey, I can run a background check on anyone right now, from my keyboard. So can you. It will cover involuntary commitments, criminal convictions, criminal charges even if dismissed, arrests, DUIs, civil lawsuits, a list of your relatives and even the amount of your mortgage and an estimate of your annual income. But since medical records are protected by law, things like antidepressant usage and even voluntary commitments are not easily discoverable.

        The cost to run such a check will range from $10 to $50 bucks. And the NICS check is actually less invasive.

    • Ralph,

      I’d even go further and make your “universal” background checks optional.

      It wouldn’t be a crime not to conduct one when transferring a firearm, but a record of one would protect one from criminal and civil prosecution if the new owner used the gun in a crime.

      In addition to creating a paper trail, the purpose of current proposals (and the new Colorado law) is to inconvenience gun-owners as much as possible.

      To quote Rachel Maddow (July 02, 2009):

      “Why bother making it illegal if you can just make it impossible to get?”

      • I’d even go further and make your “universal” background checks optional.

        Absolutely. I would use if I wanted to sell a gun to somebody who I didn’t know well. The last thing I’d want is to sell a gun to someone who is debarred due to a violent felony record or who is nucking futs. If an optional check was a shield against overzealous prosecution or a lawsuit, who wouldn’t consider using it?

        • That was an idea that I have heard floated by a gun rights activist before. Open the NICS to all, and if you use it in a private transaction, you’re 100% free and clear of any potential liability, both civil and criminal that could arise out of the transaction. If the system was easy enough to use, I’d do it.

          The guy gives me current ID, I put in his info into a website. It processes and kicks back yes or no. If yes, I print off multiple copies of the approval, and sell him the gun. If no, I don’t sell him the gun.

        • CarlosT, NICS was originally thought of as an open system available to anyone. That idea was proposed in Congress and shot down because the antis wanted their paper trail and the pros didn’t want the feds to intrude on private sales.

        • Who wouldn’t consider using it??? Ralph, you can’t possibly be that naive. Many private gun sellers know damn well their clients can’t pass. They wouldn’t voluntarily use it and they certainly don’t want the government telling them they have to.

        • Poor Mikey B#’s is delusional…. unless he can come up with irrefutable evidence that many private sellers KNOW that the buyers do not qualify to own (that is: pass the NICS check).

  4. > If the NRA et al. can equate universal background checks
    > with a federal gun registry, and events don’t overtake the
    > “debate,” The People of the Gun just might win this battle too.

    If you’re depending on the competence of the NRA, you’re doomed.

    Those of us in the Colorado Socialist Republic (CSR) have already lost this battle.

  5. First and foremost do not accept for a second that the fight is over-Congress is on break. Come April the usual suspects will be back with the same rhetoric as before, likely more emboldened thanks to the coming media blitz financed by Mr Bloomberg. Just because the leader of the Senate did not allow a stand alone vote does not mean much, as the AWB can and likely will be added as a rider to a “must pass” bill. We must all remember that a bill when written is like a christmas tree fresh out of the box, just waiting for adornments before being plugged in. Do not give up the fight. MOLON LABE

    • + 1000

      P.V., you are absolutely correct on that assessment!

      This fight isn’t near over. I expect all sorts of celebrity anti’s to be coming out of the woodwork cajoled or per$usded by Bloom-bug, Obummer and the rest of the gun grabbing crowd.

      Victims will be used, lies will be perpetrated, and politicians intimidated or bought. That’s already been demonstrated by statements and prior actions of the anti’s and reported by the sympathetic pathetic MSM.

  6. Guy in the ad could start to protect his fam by removing his finger from the trigger. Looks like he’s ready to rock. The ad would have probably been out a couple weeks ago, but they had to wait for that beard to grow.

  7. Some translation is in order:

    “People who should not have guns” – they will say it is every law abiding citizen. Own guns? You are now “mentally ill” because you “like weapons of war” and therefore shouldn’t be allowed to own guns. See what just happened?

    Veterans will be labeled “Mentally Ill” (actually, many already are)

    Again, we have the Orwellian system. Why do you think they always come back to this?

    Anyone here old enough to have watched Red Dawn? I distinctly recall the gun store owner being arrested because he couldn’t account for the stuff he gave to the kids. That was before all the modern “record keeping” BS was put in, and now thy want More record keeping BS.

    So, ultimately, there is only one possible way to fix things: Abolish ATF, abolish every federal firearm law, and allow states to make up their own minds. In a few years (I give it 5), the states that are reasonable will be happy and almost crime free (there is always 1 stupid person), and the the states that aren’t will have either fixed their thought processes or fallen to decay.

    I have to agree with the lady (sorry I have no clue who anybody is here) who says that the people do no trust congress.

  8. None of those talking heads seem to be hitting on one major point:

    Our current system in place works. It is frustrating at times for law abiding guns owners who have to work within it, but it works nonetheless.

    Adam Lanza tried to buy rifles before going on his shooting spree, but did not want to wait the required waiting period, and then moved on. The current system, in place in CT, worked.

    Because it worked, Adam Lanza went ahead and stole the guns he wanted, just like any other criminal. When he blew his own mother away and stole her guns, I doubt very much that he was thinking about undergoing a background check.

    • Ya know, they’re trying to still spin that as she bought the guns for him (straw purchase) and not that he stole them, right?

  9. Dear Chinless Wonder:

    What you propose isn’t moving forward. It’s a serious retraction of rights.

    Dear Chin:

    The only votes have weakened gun laws? Good.

    Dear Democratic Strategist:

    When have you offered anything that we want?

  10. hhhmmm backround checks , my precious… Golem golem. anyone else notice the blond guy could double for golem?

  11. My biggest concern about background checks for private sales is jurisdictional. The feds control interstate commerce. But a private, face to face transaction between people within a state is intrastate commerce and therefore none of the feds business.

  12. If the database were open to private parties, and the sales record were to be kept by the seller, would that be enough to protect gun owners’ privacy? Or would they have everyone mail those records in some day?

  13. Just as the Fist Amendment protects modern forms of communications, e.g. Reno v. American Civil Liberties Unionm 521 u.s. 844, 849 (1997), and the Fourth Amendment applies to modern forms of search, e.g. Kyllo v. United States 533 U.S. 27, 35-36 (2001), the Second Amendment extends, prima facie, to all instruments that constitute bearable arms, even those that were not in existence at the time of the founding.

    Forget were I read this

  14. Well this violates the Oath I took
    We will die in battle before we give up our arms and leave our children in slavery.

    We will not register ourselves or our arms. Registration is the prerequisite to confiscation, which is the prerequisite to dictatorship and extermination. We will NOT be photographed, finger-printed, tracked, and subjected to psych-evaluations like convicted sex-offenders just for owning semi-automatic rifles. Doing so is itself an act of surrender and submission, taking the mark of the slave (it is akin to taking the mark of the Beast).

  15. What this show covered was once again, the same ol’ prattle about “gun show loopholes”, 40% and 2 million. billion or zillion crooks prevented from getting guns.
    Karl Rove was fine but just once I’d like to see somebody mention that there ARE no gun show loopholes, there is no 40% and that most of the rejections are from screwed up Govt records!

    Like I’ve said before, if there is to be a “background check” of some sort – which, of course already exists to some extent – we may as well try to control it as best we can. How? Glad you asked..

    1/ No general registration of gun or ammo buyers or positive background checks. Negative background checks – in the sense that a potential buyer can be checked against a “prohibited” list done by a third party and no permanent record kept. Whatever list is maintained has to be carefully monitored for mistakes, typos and the usual junk such lists are ‘er to.

    2/ No general registration of any item legally purchased and kept for non NFA firearms – all FFL records to be destroyed in due time and any government violation of this rule to be held to strict account.

    3/ A mentally disturbed “no sell” list must be carefully controlled by judicial review to prevent any “medical professional” – who may themselves be “disturbed”- or believe anyone owning or wanting to own a gun is “disturbed” – to have such an arbitrary power, a violation of due process.

    4/ No restrictions or records of any temporary loans or gifts within families.

    What I’d really like to emphasize is Leghorn’s original idea of a “third party” keeping (and destroying) this “Black List’, to insure privacy, accuracy and accessible only through a warrant. This is key.

  16. Background checks on private sales are optional now. How would legislation change that? Better yet, how would any of these proposed legal changes have prevented any of these heinous crimes? Here’s a clue, all of the spree killers broke a few laws during the commission of their attacks. How is adding more laws going to make criminals not be criminals?

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