Today, Hillary Clinton is set announce what Think Progress calls an “aggressive gun control plan” (though it won’t be as aggressive as President Obama demanded last week, when he hinted at massive gun confiscation).
There’s just one major problem with Hillary’s gun control initiative: it would be absurd and ineffective. Most of her proposals are already in place.
There’s one provision, allowing gun makers, dealers, and distributors to be held civilly liable for crimes committed with their products, that would be an absolute travesty. It makes about as much sense to hold gun makers liable for gun crimes as it does for beer makers to be held accountable for drunk driving deaths. The person who bought the gun is ultimately responsible for how that gun is used, just as the driver must take the blame for getting behind the wheel drunk.
Another Hillary proposal would require background checks for guns bought online. What about these supposed online stores where anyone can buy a gun, no questions asked? Gunbroker.com is one of the nation’s largest gun auction sites. Here’s a link to an auction of a “scary” AR-15 that progressives hate so much. Is Hillary right that you can buy this gun without a background check? The answer is no, according to Gunbroker.com itself (emphasis added):
You do not have to be a licensed dealer to buy a firearm. If you are not a licensed firearm dealer (also called an FFL Holder), you must make arrangements with an FFL Holder in your state to receive the item and transfer it to you. Virtually anyone who is involved in the sale or distribution of firearms is an FFL Holder, including gun shops. You must make arrangements with your FFL Holder before placing a bid on an item. By contacting the FFL Holder before bidding, the buyer can verify that all state and federal laws will be observed. For most firearms, the buyer must be able to pass a background check.
Okay, so an online gun auction site does not allow guns to be sold without a background check. What about an online retailer such as the Ohio-based AIM Surplus? One of the largest online gun stores in the country, it sells lots of “scary” guns such as this AK-47 model. Surely you can buy it online and have it shipped right to your door! Well, not really, because just like Gunbroker.com, AIM Surplus only ships to FFL holders. In order to buy or transfer a gun from a FFL holder, you must pass a federal background check. That is current law.
Now, what about the “gun show loophole” that Hillary talks about? It’s not really a loophole. Private gun owners who want to sell their personal firearms to someone have never been required to do background checks. After all, that’s not how they make their living. It’s merely selling a piece of personal property. Most people who sell at gun shows are FFL holders, who must perform background checks. By the way, what’s the percentage of weapons used in crimes that were bought at gun shows? As low as 2 percent. That’s not enough justification to burden me if I want to sell one of my guns to my neighbor or my mother.
Hillary has also pledged to end the “default proceed” rule, which allows the dealer to release a gun if the federal government hasn’t finished a background check in three days. The default proceed rule is a safety valve against needless delays by the federal government. Those delays can be deadly, as proven recently in New Jersey. Carol Bowne was murdered by her ex earlier this year while she was waiting for her gun permit.
Oh, and Hillary says she would implement gun control by executive order if Congress doesn’t act.
Instead of passing more laws that merely make politicians feel good, let’s talk about real solutions for gun violence and mass shootings. Unfortunately, those don’t play as well with liberals on the campaign trail.