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When it comes to guns, The Tennessean can’t a thing right

It’s true. Peruse my archives. Anyway, their latest starts with the phrase Our View and at the Tennessean Our View and guns means they support gun control. So, let’s count, once again, the inaccuracies:

Loophole creates easy venue for criminals to lock, load

What loophole? Sales at gun shows are subject to the exact same regulations as sales not at gun shows. So, let’s get to the real issue at hand which is private party transfers. What are those? Well, that’s when I as a private citizen decide to sell you a gun I no longer want.

Since the Brady Law was signed in 1993, background checks have been required on purchasers of firearms at stores, and it has helped law enforcement monitor and prevent some gun crimes.

If it has helped, then name one; or at least name a stat or a trend or something. I will. Since 1994, only 135 (of 1.4M) people have been charged (0.0096%) for attempting to illegally purchase guns. Only 1,400 were arrested. And only 9,500 were even investigated. Per the Bureau of Justice Statitistics, 0.7% of crime guns were bought at gun shows. Note, I’m not against background checks but they’re effectiveness is generally overstated.

The most noteworthy of these came in 1999, when 17-year-olds Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold and an 18-year-old female friend bought two shotguns, an assault rifle and a TEC-9 assault pistol from private sellers at gun shows. Harris and Klebold used the weapons to shoot 26 students at Columbine High School, killing 13 and later themselves.

And closing the alleged loophole would have stopped this somehow? After all, they violated (not counting murders) 17 firearms laws.

The young woman later said she could not have helped buy the guns had she been required to undergo a background check.

You mean Robyn Anderson, whose story changed more times than I’ve changed the oil in the car? The Robyn Anderson who showed ID at the gun show? And there is the fact that Harris was 18 when the shooting happened and could have bought rifles and shotguns anyway.

The inability of lawmakers to close the loophole after these details emerged attests to the strength of the pro-gun lobby, which fought hard after Columbine against tighter gun restrictions. Only five years after Columbine, the ban on military-style assault weapons was allowed to expire, and the nation has since witnessed the horrors of mass killings at Virginia Tech and, just two weeks ago, Northern Illinois University; incidents wherein a single gunman wielded automatic weapons capable of killing many people in a matter of minutes.

This one has it all! Blaming the gun lobby! And blaming the ban on weapons that look like assault weapons. None of the weapons used at Virginia Tech or Northern Illinois University were covered by the ban on weapons that look like assault weapons. But let’s try to blame the ban anyway by using the words in the same paragraph.

A study published last June in Injury Prevention, an international journal for health professionals, tracked purchases at gun shows across five states. The study found frequent undocumented gun sales between private parties and “straw purchases,” wherein a person with a clean record buys a weapon for someone with a criminal record. Such straw purchases are illegal everywhere, but it seems clear that an “anything goes” climate has been created for gun shows that allows these transactions to go unnoticed.

Never read the study. Will have to check it out. Though, on the surface, I wonder what is meant by frequent since guns bought at gun shows are used in such a minuscule percentage of crimes. And also what is meant by undocumented since, per federal law, a registry of firearms is illegal.

Still, a strong federal law is needed, if only to prevent interstate transportation of illegal weapons, and that means closing the loophole. Gun owners and dealers who are peaceable and law-abiding should have no problems with the minor inconvenience imposed by the Brady Law. Congress should make it apply to everyone.

Of course, the bill would only affect the peaceable and law-abiding. And I’m certain, as a commenter there pointed out, that peaceable and law abiding fans of the First Amendment wouldn’t mind the registration and licensure of printing presses either, right?

Update: Turns out, I’ve seen the study at Injury Prevention. It’s the one where Wintemute walked around a gun show and then opined on what he saw. That is to say, it was not a study at all.

2 Responses to “When it comes to guns, The Tennessean can’t a thing right”

  1. KCSteve Says:

    You missed one, albeit in a paragraph so chock-full o’ nuts it’s hard to count every one:

    incidents wherein a single gunman wielded automatic weapons capable of killing many people in a matter of minutes.

  2. Cactus Jack Says:

    “A study published last June in Injury Prevention, an international journal for health professionals, tracked purchases at gun shows across five states. The study found frequent undocumented gun sales between private parties”

    How could a so called “study” (yeah, right) track UNDOCUMENTED purchases?

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