Let’s start with one fact: when a person fills out a Form 4473, they sign it, certifying that the information they provided is correct. Deliberately supplying false information is a federal offense, punishable by up to ten years in prison and a fine. This is according to a law that will have been in effect for 50 years come this October.
It’s rather difficult to lie on a background check as the process is completely out of the hands of the purchaser. The seller calls the NICS Center, provides the required information and the agent provides the decision to proceed, delay or deny the sale.
By the way, I have no particular beef with background checks. I have passed a few dozen of them in just the past ten years.
Background checks do cover behavioral issues that were sufficiently serious to warrant a judicial finding of incapacity. Also part of that half-century-old law.
What is often misunderstood in the Land of Wishful Thinking is that the Second Amendment does not confer a right. It prohibits the government from infringing on what was considered to be a natural right that exists independent of the Constitution. The Second Amendment is also a civil right and, as such, cannot be taken without due process in accordance with the Fifth Amendment. Therefore, the behavioral issues to which you refer must be presented, the person named must be allowed to present evidence on their own behalf, have legal counsel and a determination must be made, recorded and reported to the FBI for inclusion in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
Yes, it is easier to purchase a gun in the U.S. than it is in most other countries. So what? The homicide rates in many other countries are considerably higher than the U.S. Furthermore, that comparison relies on a rather slippery premise. The U.S. knife homicide rate is higher than the total homicide rates of the cherry-picked countries to which the U.S. is often compared. How easy is it to buy a knife? A lot less paperwork and no background check is required. For that matter, a sword is easier to buy.
Oh, but knives require getting up close and personal. So explain why there were more murders involving a knife or a blunt object than all types of rifle combined in 2016. In fact, there were more murders with knives and clubs than all types of rifles and shotguns combined.
“Gun violence” is a sham and a diversion from the real problem. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, firearms were involved in 6.2% of all criminal deaths and injuries requiring medical treatment in 2016. That figure covers more than 1.67 million assaults, sexual assaults, manslaughters and murders.
If we postulate that every single violence-related injury or death was inflicted by a single legal gun owner and use the low range of estimates of the total number of gun owners in the U.S. (roughly 80 million), we find that 99.87% of gun owners didn’t hurt anyone at all. Of course, the percentage is actually higher because many of these casualties were victims of a single killer, like Omar Mateen, who accounted for 102 by himself.
Inflating the number with suicides shows a failure to really parse the data. While the suicide rate among white, non-Hispanic males increased 35.7% from 2001 to 2016, the use of firearms dropped about 3%. Maybe not a big deal. However, the suicide rate among women has increased 52.2% over the same period but the use of firearms has fallen 9.4%. So lumping suicides in with gun violence means you’re not only ignoring the real problem, you’re ignoring the 44,965 people who ended their own lives in 2016. Even more heartless is the fact that their deaths are being used to advance an agenda that doesn’t even help them. Thanks a lot!
The car analogy fails because in most states one does not need to have a drivers license, nor register or insure a motor vehicle unless it is going to be operated on a public road. Most states do require a license to carry a firearm away from one’s residence or place of business.
You can make registration as easy as you want; people still aren’t going to comply. If limited registration failed miserably in New York, a state with a long history of gun control laws, how’s it going to do in Idaho? Montana? Alabama? Georgia? There is already a federal law that prohibits the establishment of a gun registry and there is at least one state that has a similar prohibition on the books. How many other states are going to resist?
One of many flaws in the ban fan’s thinking is the frankly silly belief that Americans are going to obey the law just because it’s the law. How many billions of dollars have we spent in the war on drugs? Remember what a shining success Prohibition turned out to be? I can assure you that there are still moonshiners.
Guns aren’t the problem but the focus on them is. It diverts attention from the fact we want to avoid addressing the real problems.