Thursday, March 7, 2019

Why HR 8 won't stop crime

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Welcome to the next assault on gun rights. After the midterm elections of 2018, Democrats took back control of the House of Representatives and immediately made gun control a top priority. Their target once again? Universal background checks. In late February 2019, the House passed H.R.8, a bill requiring universal background checks (among other things). The bill was passed, with Democrats claiming that more than 80 percent of Americans support universal background checks. If that is the case, I say more than 80 percent of Americans don’t know anything about background checks or how criminals get and use guns. Democrats keep pushing, trying to get the American public to say, “That might work. We should give up some of our freedom for the security of these background checks because they will keep bad guys from getting guns.”

But that is not true. Background checks can’t stop crime and won’t stop bad guys from getting guns. Universal background checks are nothing more than a first step to firearms registration and eventual confiscation. If your liberal friends ask why you oppose universal background checks, give them a copy of this column.

The current plan of background checks as required for transactions through Federal Firearms License holders is functional and effective when applied to firearms purchases made from dealers. That's because dealers obtain their stock from manufacturers, maintain precise inventory records and, by virtue of their licensed dealer status, are available for closer government scrutiny. But once a gun gets into the hands of a private citizen, the background check will do nothing to reduce crime. When the background check system is applied to private transactions, the effectiveness as a means to reduce crime disappears.

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