If Washington state passes Initiative 594, the consequences will be a ZERO PERCENT reduction in violent crime, and it will never be repealed.
On the surface, the idea of background checks for EVERY private party firearm sale AND TRANSFER (that includes letting a friend shoot your gun, even in your presence!) in WA sounds very comforting and reassuring, but really it’s more akin to a fairy tale of unicorns and rainbows.
Did you know that you can already perform a private party transfer like this via an FFL, WITHOUT the government forcing you to do so by law? The ATF made this possible back in March of 2013. (Read it here)
Second, this background check aspect can easily be turned on its head by encouraging all legal gun owners to apply for their own Federal Firearms License, thus allowing us to perform these background checks ourselves! How funny would that be? Can you imagine the backlog that would create at the ATF? If it’s background checks the gun grabbers want, we’ll give them background checks, and it’ll be more than the system can handle. Want the instructions on how to become an FFL, here you go: http://www.atf.gov/firearms/how-to/become-an-ffl.html
Third, if gun grabbers can make it more expensive (transfer fees, shipping, or driving farther than necessary to meet up) and inconvenient for us law abiding citizens to buy and sell used firearms, then we will have less discretionary income to spend on NEW firearms and ammo, thus forcing gun shops to close due to the decreased revenue. If gun shops close, fewer gun owners will exist, which is precisely Mayor Bloomberg’s desired outcome.
OR they could just let US call in the background checks ourselves and we’ll keep the bills of sale on hand for 30 years, locked in our personal safes, just like an FFL. BOOM. Problem solved.
If two people that can ALREADY legally own firearms want to exchange cash for a firearm, isn’t a background check extremely arbitrary, moot, and terribly inconvenient? I don’t need the government to tell me that I shouldn’t sell guns to criminals, do you? Besides, the government already has the corner on that market, ahem—“Fast and Furious”—I digress. If something feels off when I go to meet a buyer, I invoke the right to have them follow me to my local gun store and do the transfer there. If they can’t produce proper state ID or refuse to sign a bill of sale then no deal takes place, period. These are huge red flags that I might be selling to a restricted person, so I tell the buyer that I will not complete the transaction without involving an FFL (Federal Firearms Licensee). What are they going to do, get upset at me? I’m the one still carrying a gun! (Legally carrying the gun I might add.)
Listen, criminals aren’t buying guns from you and me, they are buying their guns FROM OTHER CRIMINALS. They are buying guns with missing serial numbers (possession of which is a felony), they are buying guns out of the trunks of hoop DeVilles in the dark at 2AM on the side of a run down gas station. Bottom line, criminals who already can’t legally own firearms, WILL NOT be buying and selling their firearms via private party sales at their local gun shop if this initiative passes. Only the law abiding will be, so what’s the point? I want to know how legislators plan to stop criminals from selling to EACH OTHER. Forcing law abiding citizens to waste time at a FFL is not the answer. The point of this Initiative is to make us feel warm and comforted, but in reality, this Initiative will do NOTHING to reduce violent crime or get guns out of the hands of criminals who can’t legally own guns anyway.
Private party sale background checks would not have stopped Rep. Gabby Gifford’s shooting, the Maryland mall shooting, Aurora, CO, Virginia Tech, or Sandy Hook. In fact, the Federal background check didn’t help prevent ANY of those shootings. The only aspects of similarity in these shootings is that they happened in “Gun-Free Zones” and were committed by mentally deranged individuals. This Initiative is just begging Federal law-makers to create a law that stops ALL law abiding gun owners from exchanging firearms. Criminals already can’t legally own guns, let alone buy or sell them, so preventing the law abiding from doing commerce without jumping through a meaningless background check is again arbitrary and will not appease the left in any way shape or form. It only limits the law abiding gun owner’s ability to buy and trade as we see fit. Again, I don’t need the government to tell me not to sell a gun to a criminal, do you??? If so, then enjoy your initiative Washington. No hard feelings, I just prefer liberty over a false sense of security and I believe I-594 is a HUGE step in the wrong direction to reduce violent crime.