Gun control advocates constantly call for legislators to “close the gun show loophole.” They claim that felons (or their surrogates) go to gun shows to buy handguns and “assault weapons” on the DL from private sellers. The antis want all private gun sales to go through a licensed gun dealer to ensure a criminal background check. Yes, well . . .
Selling a gun to a prohibited person is a federal offense. Most sellers at private gun shows are licensed dealers. Gun show guns account for a statistically insignificant proportion of firearms used in crimes. And Americans cherish the right to sell guns to each other without federal notification.
In other words, FOAD. If the antis want to do something useful about prohibited persons buying guns they should crack down on illegal immigrants. Here’s the problem [via washingtontimes.com]:
Federal investigators were able to get fraudulent driver’s licenses in all three states where they tried, according to a report released Friday that shows continued problems with states’ ID programs more than 11 years after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks highlighted the problem.
States are particularly flummoxed by out-of-state documents, according to investigators from the Government Accountability Office who conducted the audit.
The investigators used forged birth certificates purportedly issued by Ohio and New York, and successfully submitted them in three other states.
“In most of these five attempts across the three states, we were issued permanent or temporary licenses in about 1 hour or less,” the audit says. “In only one case did a front-counter clerk appear to question the validity of one of the counterfeit documents, but this clerk did not stop the issuance process.”
Name names? No they did not. So much for government transparency and all that. Anyway . . .
Let’s think about this for a second. No, not the part where illegal immigrants use driver’s licenses to receive benefits that suck tens of billions of dollars out of American taxpayers’ wallets, over-burdening our “safety net,” degrading the quality of social services for legal Americans.
Let’s think about how people in this country buy guns.
They do so with a driver’s license. When a gun dealer runs a federally mandated NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System) enquiry on the FBI database, the buyer’s immigration status doesn’t come into it. If the buyer has [what the system considers to be] a valid ID and no criminal record, the sale goes through.
Truth be told, I don’t see this as an enormous problem. Terrorists and criminals have plenty of extra-legal access to firearms. I’m willing to listen to arguments that undocumented Americans should be documented and then allowed the right to keep and bear arms.
But there’s no denying that illegal IDs are an issue of critical importance to homeland security (a term that never fails to send shivers down my spine). So what, pray tell, is the Department of Homeland Security doing about it?
A full verification system that would help states perform checks on out-of-state identities could be a decade away, the investigators said in their report.
The auditors also faulted the Homeland Security Department, which it said has failed to tell states how to carry out key parts of Real ID, the 2005 law that is supposed to tighten rules on how states issue identification cards and driver’s licenses.
In its official response, the Homeland Security Department rejected auditors’ recommendations, saying states are free to collaborate and come up with their own state-to-state systems. The department said it is using federal taxpayer money to help some states that are trying new methods but that it will not push them.
Click here to read a more official jargon-laden account of the inter-agency bunfight at hstoday.com. Bottom line: the DHS may patrol our border but it doesn’t take the threat of illegal IDs and, thus, immigration seriously. At all.
Whether Uncle Sam’s failure to close the fake ID gap is due to unofficial pro-illegal immigration policy or the usual bureaucratic bloat, inefficiency and incompetence or all of the above doesn’t matter. Until the gun grabbers sort this shit out, they should STFU about gun shows.