black gun friday

“The busiest shopping day of the year also saw a major boom for gun sales,” cnn.com reports. Time for a happy dance? Not if you’re CNN (or the AP). Every gun-shaped silver-lining must have a dark cloud surrounding it. “Officials estimate that about 3,000, or 2%, of the more than 144,000 Black Friday background checks will not be completed because of insufficient information from records such as court documents.” Sales that will, by law, go through if not resolved in three days. That’s three thousand guns sold without a background check! Hide your children! Call out the National Guard! And ask yourself this . . .

What difference does that make?

Are we to believe that one or more of those three thousand purchasers will use their new gun to commit a crime because they weren’t background checked by the FBI? Put another way, what are the odds that a felon and/or an otherwise prohibited person was among those three thousand “failed” background checks? I’m thinking zero. More to the point . . .

What would a “hit” on the background check system – preventing a firearms purchase – do in terms of crime fighting? A National Academy of Sciences panel in 2004 held that “the Brady background checks did not reduce violent crime, not even a single category of violent crime.” Since then, John Lott has crunched the NICS numbers. More than 90 percent of denied sales are false positives.

NICS doesn’t prevent nutcases from carrying out mass shootings. It doesn’t stop gang bangers banging. Or prevent domestic abusers prevent from murdering their “loved ones.” While there are more than a few intellectually-challenged criminals and crazies in this great country of ours, the majority of bad guys aren’t that stupid. They buy (or steal) a gun or guns on the DL.

Gun control advocates use NICS avoidance as evidence that it works! Well, it would do if we expanded NICS checks to include gun shows and personal sales. Then the Fibbies and their local friends would do a bang-up job “keeping guns out of the hands of the mentally ill and criminals.” .

Puh-lease. “Universal background checks” only affect law-abiding citizens trying to exercise their natural, civil and Constitutional right to keep and bear arms. Bad guys get guns off the books. Always have. Always will. No matter how many checks the FBI does or does not process, NICS is a waste of time, money and human resources.

More than that, it creates a false sense of security, gives antis a toe-hold in their pro-government civilian disarmament campaign and delays Americans free exercise of their gun rights.

While I’m not advocating anything illegal, I wouldn’t shed a single tear if the whole system crashed and burned. I wouldn’t feel even slightly less safe. That said, what about those 4473 forms? Now there’s another even bigger boondoggle, one that puts all gun owning Americans in danger. [h/t DrVino, MRobertson]

45 Responses to FBI Fails to Process Thousands of Background Checks. And?

  1. Hey Robert, how about turning B. Krafft loose on those 4473s sometime. Let him slice and dice that boondoggle.

  2. I was under the impression that unfinished checks are “delayed” responses. It just means the sale isn’t completed today, but likely will be in the next day or two.

  3. My neighbor has been waiting for 6 weeks for his BGC to be completed. And yet he has a CHL. Even though the shop can legally sell him the piece, they won’t.
    I told him to try a different store. Same check, out the door in half an hour. Approved.

    • And if your friend lived across an arbitrary state boundary, in Idaho, he would not need a background check if he has a concealed weapons license. I know this will outrage the hoplophobes, but Idaho figures that if you have a CWL, you are by definition a law-abiding person, and all you do here is fill out the Fed form, pay the price of the gun, and walk out. No NICS calls, no further hassle. Really handy if you are buying gun from a dealer at a show, or win a gun at your Friends of NRA event.

      • Same thing in Utah. They call the Utah BCI to make sure your CFP is still valid, fill out the 4773, you’re good to go.

      • Strictly speaking, it isn’t just that the state assumes you’re law abiding simply because you hold a license to carry. It’s not one-and-done. It’s that they’re running a fresh background check on you every month themselves, to ensure your continuing eligibility to hold that license.

        Licensees are “exempt” from NICS checks at the sales counter, only because their backgrounds are being run, well, in the background, every month, regardless of any firearms purchases. If a disqualifier pops up on that monthly check, they’ll reclaim that license.

        • This I did not know. Very interesting. Thank you for that, Jonathan-Houston.

          [edit] And that was sincere, NOT sarcasm.

    • That’s odd. Is Oregon a state that does not exempt concealed carry license holders from even being run through NICS at the counter?

  4. “No matter how many checks the FBI does or does not process, NICS is a waste of time, money and human resources.

    More than that, it creates a false sense of security, gives antis a toe-hold in their pro-government civilian disarmament campaign…”

    And even MORE than any of those things, it is a tacit agreement that no matter what the Second Amendment says (…shall not be infringed.) the very existence of NICS presupposes that the government has the power to create a list of Americans that, in the opinion of the government, are not to be allowed to exercise their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. THAT is the biggest issue hat needs to be addressed, not whether or not the NICS system works well, prevents any crime, or works not at all.

    Also, why is the FBI running this boondoggle, aren’t we wasting a lot of money on something called the BATFE? Seems like this should be something those bastards are f-ing up, not the G-men.

    • @Cliff H., “Also, why is the FBI running this boondoggle, aren’t we wasting a lot of money on something called the BATFE? Seems like this should be something those bastards are f-ing up, not the G-men.”

      Because the Politburo, er, I mean Congress mandated them to set it up and run it.

        • @LarryinTx, very true. The FBI is the repository for criminal histories…..and that is what feeds the NICS data base.

        • That’s hilarious. They have never asked my number of sales or even if I pay taxes. Wonder what they really do? Cause really the only thing they cared about was my bound book and a bunch of silly rules applied to me and my partner. They want 4473s done on me and my wife for stock we decided to put in our private collection.

  5. “Bad guys get guns off the books.”

    Not necessarily – if they are members of the Mexican drug cartels, they get guns “fast and furiously” from the BATFE and the Obama administration.

  6. Went on a minor buying spree a couple of years ago. After a few additions, I had a 3 day “hold” put on me by NICS, as a law abiding CCW holder, I actually called, and spoke to, the Southern Regional Director of the FBI. ( A very pleasent conversation.) I inquired to why the hold.
    After only two hours, my FFL dealer called and said “we received a call, come and get it”.

    Holds and/or delays happen. Plus it was a very busy day for NICS.
    (Smiling)

  7. We’re all cheering like this is a good thing. A massive, pointless government program cannot keep up with its responsibilities. You think somehow you’re going to turn that set of circumstances around and make it work for you?

    Initially, a check that doesn’t come back with either a proceed or a denial, is therefore a delay. During the delay period, the NICS investigators check the records more thoroughly and directly (supposedly) to resolve whatever ambiguity prevented a clear go/no-go decision in the first place. Well.

    What this article addresses are those delayed checks which do not reach a conclusive proceed or denial decision within the statutory three day period. So right off the bat, these delays constitute an unconstitutional up to three day waiting period. Why? Because the buyer’s a bad guy? Nope, just that the government’s records are incomplete.

    If it’s still inconclusive after those three days of delay, then the onus shifts to the FFL whether to allow the sale to go through. Some of the largest retails, like Dick’s and Walmart, still won’t sell without a clear proceed from NICS. So now that unconstitutional waiting period becomes a de facto ban, all because the government’s records are incomplete, not because you’re a bad guy. You can try someplace else, but at the very least that delay period is going to follow you around to every FFL.

    This insanity is what the gun grabbers want to expand to every transaction, especially private sales, not because they know it reduces crime, but because they know it infringes freedom.

  8. “That’s three thousand guns sold without a background check!”
    BS! CNN lying again for scare tactics!
    The background check IS being done, but may take MORE than 3 days, due to incomplete information. HINT. Put your SSN on the form and no confusion over similar names.
    In the end, most will be “PROCEED” as in “Approved”.
    Don’t want the hassle of NICS?
    Get a Concealed Permit. Many States qualify for bypassing NICS with an approved Concealed Permit by the FBI.
    I live in South Carolina which qualifies and I have a CWP. Takes longer to do the forms than to checkout. No NICS check for me.

  9. You know I was talking to people on the Fark forums about this story. I have to ponder if this is just the FBI and BATFE blowing smoke again. My example for this hypothesis being that a friend of mine had a gun purchase delayed by three days because he had the same name as a known drug dealer. This wasn’t him as when the crime occurred my friend was 8 years old. There was no declaration that this was a false positive and the sale could go through. They just let it go through after three days. Some years later my former step da had almost the same thing happen to him. Again; there was no declaration that he was cleared. They just let the transfer go after three days.

    Given this I”m pretty damn certain we’re looking at just another lie throw out by the media helplessnes complex. Even worse this reads like someone’s trying to drum up support for universal background checks again.

    • Oh the lovely Fark comment system. Rational discourse about firearms is met with “Oh, what are you afraid of” or “If you need a license to drive, you need a license to own a gun…” or “Why do you need all those guns?”

      I get into enough arguments online with regards to firearms politics, so I kind of just read the Fark threads. It seems other POTG fight the good fight there.

  10. I like what the NICS system can do for citizens, helping be sure we don’t sell to someone we don’t really want to.

    I most definitely do NOT like whose hands it’s in. If I could change things with a wish, I’d take the operation away from the government and ask the JPFO to handle it.

    • Any person can pay for one of the many background check services in business today if they really are that concerned about it. Furthermore, non-government groups could pool together and provide background checks. It might prove to be a profitable business for a while. However, government has no place doing those checks and certainly no authority to require them as a matter of law.

  11. Funny how we got along just fine for over 200 years without background checks. Something the gun grabbers just can’t wrap their heads around lest it explode. A universal truth of humanity is that you cannot control someone else. The only real control you have is of yourself. Trying to control behavior is futile, but that never seems to stop the progressives.

    • Ditto that. I was with a friend who got denied, but since we were both friends of the owner who’d already been going ahead with the sale, the owner was outraged and called the FBI directly. I don’t know the full conversation, but we heard the owner giving a description of our friend, among other information. There was a long wait on hold, but finally (half an hour? forty minutes?) the FBI guy admitted the error, said he’d made a note in the files, and we could go break in the new ballistic entertainment device.

      There was a very positive side-effect: about ten customers piled up while the owner was on the phone. When one started getting irritated because the owner was just waiting on the phone, I cut in and explained why he was on the phone. Most were impressed that the owner would go to bat that way for a customer, and ended up being very loyal.

      My friend even got a tee shirt made that said “I am not a 6-foot tall well-muscled dark-skinned person” to commemorate the event, something he wore frequently thereafter for shooting.

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