If we didn’t know better, we’d think that certain branches of the US Government were secretly trying to undermine gun controllers’ arguments about who is and who isn’t sufficiently qualified to own firearms.
You’ve heard the gun-grabbers bray it thousands of times: only police and the military are qualified to wield guns. The average citizen can’t possibly train enough or be trusted to take the proper precautions when storing and carrying their firearms.
Then along comes yet another inspector general report and blows that talking point all to hell.
You know the situation has to be bad when the Washington Post runs something like this:
No matter how hard he tries, Uncle Sam can’t stop his cops from losing track of their guns and ammunition.
The U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) provides the latest example of a recurring problem that has long vexed federal law enforcement.
A new report by the Justice Department’s inspector general “identified significant deficiencies related to tracking weapons, ammunition and less lethal munitions, as well as noncompliance with ammunition policy requirements.”
How big a problem is it? Well . . .
The inspector general in Department of Homeland Security reported in 2010 on carelessness with weapons over a two-year period. That report said almost 300 shotguns, pistols and M4 rifles were lost from fiscal 2006 to 2008, mostly because “officers did not properly secure them.”
In April, we wrote about another (DOJ Inspector General Michael) Horowitz report on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, which like the Marshals Service basically has good weapons controls. Nonetheless, ATF had “26 instances of lost, stolen, or missing firearms,” including one that was later used in a crime, between fiscal 2014 and 2017. That report referred to other studies from as early as 2002 about “control weaknesses over [ATF] ammunition inventories.”
DHS was the subject of another audit a year ago over its loss of 228 firearms, 1,889 badges and 25 secure immigration stamps from fiscal 2014 through 2016.
Isn’t DHS in charge of the same people who man those airport security
theater checkpoints? Yes, yes they are.
But it’s no biggie. The guns are paid by Mr. and Mrs. Taxpayer and only a few hundred, maybe a thousand or so go walkies every year. That’s out of the tens of thousands that Uncle Sam owns. And fortunately, these missing guns are never used in actual crimes or anything.
And don’t think this is limited to the feds either. The problem at the state and local level is as big or bigger than the feds’ f-ups.
Maybe Washington State should consider making Feds there comply with the same safe storage laws that regular, law-abiding citizens will be forced to follow if I-1639 passes on the November ballot. If it saves just one life . . .