Paulette Sullivan Moore

    Guns — New Times, New Solutions

    Posted June 13th, 2013 by

    Although I do not currently carry a gun, I have twice seriously considered doing so.  What I find comforting is that if I choose to own and carry a gun, the Second Amendment ensures that I am able to do so.  I find it equally comforting that convicted felons and those who have domestic violence restraining orders against them or who commit certain domestic violence misdemeanors are prohibited from having guns.  Having previously examined this issue, Congress wisely passed laws to prohibit these individuals from owning or possessing firearms.  What Congress knew back then remains true today—the right to bear arms is too precious to be sullied and misused by bad apples.  So Congress designed a federally licensed firearm dealer and background check system to ensure that only responsible people would be able to purchase or possess firearms.

    Unfortunately, this is not your parents’ gun purchasing marketplace.  Today 40% of firearms are purchased via private and Internet sales. This new day of extensive private and Internet gun sales creates a way for criminals and domestic violence abusers to bypass the protections Congress envisioned.  Times have changed, and this current Congress must plug up the huge 40% criminal and abuser loophole to address these new times.  To do so Congress must pass laws that require private and Internet firearm sales to include the same background checks as all other firearms sales as well as provide adequate funding to ensure that information that identifies prohibited persons is kept up to date.  Modern times require modern solutions.

     

    This post is part of the project, ”Sorrow, Anger, ACTION! – A Gathering of Voices Against Gun Violence,” organized by MomsRising, PICO Network, UltraViolet, Children’s Defense Fund and the National Network to End Domestic Violence.

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    1 Comment

    June 14, 2013 at 7:43 am by Anonymous

    Thank you for your sensible and refreshingly centrist view on the issue.

    Just a couple of things- that 40% refers only to private sales. Internet sales through dealers still go through a background check.
    The question is where criminals really get guns from, and thankfully that’s already been reliably answered by a study from the Bureau of Justice Statistics. In a poll of over 203,000 criminals doing time for a firearm violation, the number that got their guns from gun shows was 0.7%.

    The number that got their guns from an already illegal source was 39%. Another 39% got their guns from a friend or family member. They borrowed it, many of them committing felony possession while doing it.

    BJS also found that only 40 to 56% received an enhancement to their sentence because of the firearm. So if you’re a criminal, why NOT carry a gun?

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