A Reader writes: I’m for commonsense gun laws. Here’s why.

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Dear Kelly,

In response to recent comments about gun laws, I am for common sense firearms laws.  Let me explain why.

BACKGROUND CHECKS

Form-4473You are required to fill out a BATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms) Form 4733 when a person purchases a firearm from a Federal Firearms License (FFL) holder (such as a gun shop).  The information required includes; name, address, date of birth, government-issued photo ID, National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) background check transaction number, make/model/serial number of the firearm, and a short affidavit stating that the purchaser is eligible to purchase firearms under federal law.

Lying on this form is a felony and can be punished by up to five to 10 years in prison in addition to fines, even if the transaction is simply denied by the NICS. Although the government is not allowed to keep the information from the form for more than 30 days, the seller of the firearm must maintain the form for 20 years and is subject to BATF scrutiny as long as he is in business.

Now let’s dig a little deeper, the US Court of Appeals (5th Circuit) has ruled (August 18, 1995) that a convicted felon cannot be prosecuted for lying on a 4733 as it violates his Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination.

During the National Rifle Association’s meeting with Vice President Joe Biden and the White House gun violence task force (1/2013), the vice president said the Obama administration does not have the time to fully enforce existing gun laws.  Jim Baker, the NRA representative present at the meeting, recalled the vice president’s words during an interview with The Daily Caller: “And to your point, Mr. Baker, regarding the lack of prosecutions on lying on Form 4473s, we simply don’t have the time or manpower to prosecute everybody who lies on a form, that checks a wrong box, that answers a question inaccurately.”

The President and others have strongly suggested that anyone on the “No Fly” list should be barred from obtaining a firearm.  (We covered it here.)Does anyone know how a name gets on the “No Fly” list, and more importantly – how can a person get his name OFF the “No Fly” list?

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FBI Stops All Appeals Of Gun Owner Background Checks

On January both, USA Today reported that although the reason for a denial of a firearms purchase by NCIS must be given within 5 days (that’s the law) the FBI, the agency responsible for maintaining the NCIS system is “re-assigning” the personnel with this responsibility elsewhere.  UPDATE: This has created a backlog of 7,100 denial appeals.

Does anyone see a similarity between this and the notoriously inaccurate “No Fly” list to deny firearms purchases?

Let’s enforce the laws already on the books rather than introduce new legislation that will effectively do nothing to prevent gun violence (as admitted by the President.)

GUN FREE ZONES

We’ll keep this one simple, as the vast majority of mass shootings have occurred in GUN FREE ZONES it is reasonable to assume that these Gun Free Zones are in reality Free Fire Zones with target rich environments.  For a start, provide armed and trained personnel in schools to protect our children.  As for a business that doesn’t allow firearms on their property, fine I will take my business elsewhere whenever possible.

PERSONALIZED FIRARMS, AMMO, ETC.

It’s fine to fund reasonable research, but do not legislate requirements until something is actually working.  Maryland recently scrapped its bullet/casing ID program after five years and many millions of taxpayer dollars because it just didn’t work.  Current firearms with good ammunition are 99.999% reliable when needed. Any new technology needs to be that reliable before any legislative mandates.

MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES

States need to provide mental health information to NCIS, but this information should only be provided after judicial note of each case it taken.  Recent legislation in California allows courts to order the seizure of personally owned firearms on a claim by a relative without any notice to the firearm owner.

Yes, I’m very pro commonsense firearms laws but have no use for the current crop of feel-good legislation that will not put a damper on firearms violence.

It is useful to note in closing that the areas with the toughest firearms control laws also have the highest rate of violent attacks.

Yours,

Warren C.

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