Yesterday’s Business Insider predicted that gun control will become a pivotal issue in the 2016 presidential campaign, while a story in The Guardian affirmed this column’s prediction that anti-gunners would seek to extend the “hold” period on gun transactions beyond the current three days.
The Guardian story alluded to a letter sent by anti-gun Sen. Richard Blumenthal and a dozen of his colleagues – all Democrats but not including either of Washington’s two U.S. senators – asking the gun industry to “stop selling guns to people who do not first definitively pass a background check.” The full text of their 387-word letter may be read below.
According to Business Insider, “Democrats are becoming more and more outspoken about gun violence in the wake of seemingly ever increasing mass shootings, despite the fact that the American public remains as opposed as ever to many gun-control measures.” Shouldn’t that actually say many leading Democrats are now dropping all pretenses about “supporting the Second Amendment,” and are now reinforcing the notion that theirs is “the party of gun control?”
Perhaps emboldened by the willingness of wealthy elitist anti-gunners including former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg to financially support gun control, some Democrats think they can win on a gun control platform. But recent polling suggests otherwise, and public sentiment has turned away from so-called “gun free zones” following the Chattanooga “lone wolf” attack on military facilities.
However, those devoted to increasing gun control, which translates to increasing their erosion of the Second Amendment, don’t seem swayed by polls so much as ideology. The Blumenthal letter essentially amounts to more erosion by asking gun retailers to ignore federal law and continue to hold firearms past the statutory 72 hour deadline after which a transaction may proceed even if the National Instant Check System hasn’t okayed it.
After all, the NICS check is supposed to be “instant.” How long must a law-abiding citizen be prevented from exercising his or her rights because the system is sluggish? Anti-gunners will argue that keeping people waiting is justified if it “saves one life.” But that argument capsized in New Jersey early last month with the knife-slaying of Carol Bowne, who had been waiting patiently for her permit to purchase a handgun. Her blood remains on the hands of every “if-it-saves-one-life” gun control extremist.
The Republican field of presidential hopefuls is crowded, and they seem to be doing exactly what Democrats want: Beating each other up relentlessly. It would seem that gun rights activists would be willing to back any alternative to what, at least for now, appears an inevitable Hillary Clinton nomination, but that’s never the case. Some gun activists will try to excuse stubbornness or voter apathy by not casting a vote on the grounds that a Republican isn’t pure enough for their liking.
If Hillary or some other anti-gun Democrat wins because of that – because too many stay away from the polls or cast a somewhat self-destructive third-party vote (remember Ross Perot in 1992) – then there could be another Clinton administration in the White House, and Democrats would say it’s because America wants their brand of gun control. Perhaps comedian Jay Leno puts it best about that kind of scenario when he asks “How stupid is that?”
Full text of Blumenthal letter:
“We are writing you with a simple ask: stop selling guns to people who do not first definitively pass a background check. The senseless killing of nine innocent people in Charleston, S.C., on June 17, was made possible because the alleged gunman was able to buy a gun without passing a background check.
“A “default to proceed” loophole in the Brady Handgun Violence Act allows, but does not require, gun retailers to proceed with a firearms sale after three days, if an applicant’s background check is still pending. While certain facts remain unknown, the FBI acknowledges that a fully completed background check would have uncovered the alleged perpetrator’s prior arrest on a drug charge and his drug addiction, thereby barring him from purchasing the .45-caliber handgun with which he took nine lives.
“The perpetrator’s exploitation of this loophole is not an anomaly. In the last five years, the “default to proceed” loophole has led gun retailers to proceed with 15,729 firearm sales to “prohibited people” – individuals who were deemed ineligible to purchase a firearm once their background checks were completed. Based on FBI data, the Brady Campaign estimates that on average more than ten prohibited people a day are sold guns by gun dealers who do not use their discretion to wait for a final determination from FBI. Responsible gun retailers can act today to address this unacceptable situation. The law allows retailers to decide whether or not to allow gun sales to proceed after the three-day “default period” has elapsed. You have a duty to ensure that your products do not get into the hands of dangerous individuals like the Emanuel AME Church shooter.
“In 2008, Walmart, the nation’s largest gun retailer, partnered with Mayors Against Illegal Guns and agreed not to transfer firearms without background checks, even if three days had passed. The short-term inconvenience is minimal. In the vast majority of cases the background check is completed within minutes and the retailer knows whether they may proceed with the sale. After the horror inflicted upon the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, no responsible gun retailer should transfer a gun without first conducting a complete background check.
“We implore you to act now. Join the movement of responsible gun retailers both large and small who will not sell a firearm absent a complete background check.”
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