Op-Ed: Despite the failure of background checks, gun control groups push for more
After the tragic Charleston shooting in 2015, Congressman James Clyburn introduced the “Background Check Completion Act,” a bill that would have supposedly closed the “Charleston loophole” that let the shooter acquire his gun.
This legislation has been reintroduced into the new Congress as H.R. 3464, and the Michael Bloomberg-funded gun control groups, Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action, are singing its praises.
“Rep. Clyburn’s legislation would improve the criminal background check system by barring retailers from green-lighting gun sales until a full background check has been completed, a common-sense fix that will keep thousands of guns out of the hands of convicted felons, domestic abusers and the dangerously mentally ill,” John Feinblatt, President of Everytown for Gun Safety, said in a statement.
This language should sound familiar to anyone who follows the gun debate. The term “common-sense” is tossed around by the gun control lobby for almost all its legislative proposals; but nothing it proposes is really “common sense.”
The problem with Clyburn’s legislation is that it would lay the ground work for universal background checks, while doing nothing to stop shooters like the evil Dylann Roof from getting guns. And by delaying thousands of gun owners from making on-the-spot purchases, the current “instant” background check system will no longer be very “instant.”
Even more tragic, delaying gun purchases can be deadly, as shown in the case of Carol Bowne. Bowne attempted to arm herself for protection in gun-controlled New Jersey, but she was killed by a crazed ex-boyfriend before she was permitted to own a gun.
If this legislation were to become law, it will fail at preventing bad guys like Roof from arming themselves, while leaving potential victims like Bowne defenseless. Evil-doers simply bypass background checks and other gun control laws, while honest citizens are disarmed. In the case of Bowne, because she was delayed her right to own and carry a firearm, she was denied the right to protect herself – and she paid the ultimate price.
But despite the imminent failure of this legislation, the gun control lobby will continue to squeal even louder for universal background checks.
Yet universal background checks will fail just as badly as the current background check system. After all, 95 percent of NICS background checks are false positives, and the NICS system has been used to disarm law-abiding seniors and veterans. Instead of expanding an already-flawed system, the current background check system should be abolished, allowing honest citizens to defend themselves without government screening.
The gun control lobby claims that if universal background checks and other gun control measures were implemented, then mass shootings would decrease. Yet they ignore the fact that evil exists in the world; that evil people will always circumvent the law; and that good men and women must be prepared to shoot back.
Jordan Stein is the Director of Communications for Gun Owners of America (GOA), a grassroots organization representing more than 1.5 million gun owners. He can be followed on Twitter at @jordankstein.
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