Email blast from the Virginia Citizens Defense League (VCDL):
As a shocker, the Toome/Manchin/Schumer amendment to a gun-control bill in Congress was written by the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA)! Alan Gottlieb, with CCRKBA, told a group of gun owners at a meeting that his organization wrote the bill and it has a lot of improvements to current law that are good for gun owners. In fact, CCRKBA actually ENDORSES the bill. HOWEVER, VCDL continues to OPPOSE that bill . . .
The bill does indeed offer some improvements to current law:
* Provides a felony penalty for anybody who attempts to make a gun registration database (currently such a thing is illegal, but there is no penalty)
* Allows handgun to be purchased in all 50 states, and not in just the state where the purchaser resides
* Clarifies the federal peaceful journey law to allow a person to stop at a hotel, eat a meal, get gasoline, etc. while traveling across a gun-unfriendly state
* Provides criminal and civil protections for private sellers whose sale was run through a background check
* Provides a method for protecting veterans from having their gun rights removed without proper adjudication
While those items are indeed good, the serious problems with the bill comes in the area of requiring background checks for all guns sold at gun shows or for guns that are advertised either in a “publication” or on the internet. While selling a gun or giving a gun to a family member would be allowed without a background check, selling a gun to anybody else would become almost impossible:
1. If you sell a gun at a gun show, then a background check MUST be done. There is no requirement in the bill, however, that a dealer would be available to run the background check! So it would be quite possible that private sales at gun shows would not be possible at all if no dealer agreed to run the background check. In fact, based on the definition of a gun show as having 75 or more guns for sale, a large flea market might qualify as a “gun show” because of a lot of small private sellers, with NO FFL present at the show to run background checks. In that case NO guns could be legally sold at the flea market at all, wasting everyone’s time. And how would a person know if there were 75 or more guns at the flea market or not? Talk about a trap to turn good people into felons!
2. If you say you have a gun for sale and either list it on the internet or post something about it in a “publication,” then the gun MUST be sold through a dealer at that point. If the buyer posts in either place that he is looking for a gun, the gun he purchases will also require a background check. The only way to sell a gun to a non-family member is if you are NOT at a gun show and never make mention of wanting to sell the gun on the internet or in any kind of publication. Basically, you would have to do it by word of mouth only. Good luck with that! What are you going to do – walk down a street and ask everyone you pass if they want to buy a gun from you?
3. While Alan claims that this bill would in no way lead to a registry, the data would be there for the taking, since the sale would be on a form 4473 kept by the dealer. If you didn’t sell through a dealer, the feds would know they only have to look to your family members to find the gun, since they would be the only people really exempt from the background check.
There is no doubt that this bill would do serious harm to gun shows and to private sales. You could find yourself at a gun show unable to sell your gun because no dealer will run the background check. You might not be able to sell your gun at a large flee market because there are no dealers in attendance to run the check. Make a mistake in how you sell that gun, for example mentioning it in an email but not selling it with a background check, and you can become a felon.
This is simply not the time for ANY gun bills to be considered in Congress, because they can be hijacked and made into anti-gun bills. Or, in this bill’s case, it already has some serious problems that can be made even worse. Surely, no one is really stupid enough to trust Senator Chuck Schumer when it comes to guns?
VCDL continues to OPPOSE ALL gun control bills in Congress. Sadly, this bill only makes our job harder at a time when Bloomberg and his illegal mayors are about to go on another offensive against our gun rights.
Click here for the text of the bill:.
Click here for a video of Alan explaining the bill.
Alan’s faith in background checks, and in Chuck Schumer, is misplaced and this bill must be defeated. Criminals will continue to have no problems getting guns with or without background checks. It’s the rest of us who will have lost our right to sell or buy guns from a private sale without Big Brother’s approval. That Big Brother, BTW, is the same Big Brother who provided guns to the Mexican cartels in Fast and Furious and tried to blame innocent gun dealers.