Mike Elk is a labor journalist and staff writer for In These Times
criminals, terrorists, and mentally unstable people buying a gun without a
background check is easier than getting a driver’s license. Many of these
people can buy guns at frequent gun shows were background checks are not
required. In fact, a large amount of weapons came from this type of shows.
Recently, NYPD sent two undercover investigators to a gun show a hundred miles from the Tucson shoots in nearby Phoenix, Arizona. There they were able to buy on tape three guns with no questions asked. In fact, the investigators told the gun sellers that they were glad they could buy the gun on site since them “probably couldn’t pass a background check”. Saying this to a gun seller who then allows you to buy a gun is illegal.
Federal law prohibits certain categories of dangerous people from owning guns, and licensed dealers can easily screen buyers with the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). But the system is easily evaded, especially in so-called "private sales" made at hundreds of gun shows around the country every year.
At all locations investigators identified private sellers
that failed integrity tests. An
integrity test is the legal standard that private sellers are held to and
means, if a private seller "knows" or "has reason to
believe" the buyer is in a prohibited category, such as felons and drug
abusers, it is illegal
to go through with the sale.
The gun seller broke the law by refusing to uphold the integrity tests. They were able to buy a Glock 9mm and three 33-round high-capacity magazines -- just like those used by Jared Loughner in the Tucson Shooting. People like Jared Loughner who was refused entry to the Army because he was mentally unstable or people with criminal backgrounds should not be allowed to buy guns
In the United States not only do we allow mentally unstable people prone to violence buy any type of gun they want, but we also through our loopholes we allow terrorist and drug lord to buy massive amounts of guns. A study recently revealed that a large portion of the guns used in the Mexican drug wars are coming from the United States. One cartel bought 700 guns at one single store.
Something must change in order to stop this. Americans actually do support common-sense measures that keep guns out of dangerous hands.
According to a recent poll conducted by Republican and Democratic firms by “Mayors against Illegal Guns:”
* 90 percent of Americans and 90 percent of gun owners support fixing gaps in government databases that are meant to prevent the mentally ill, drug abusers and others from buying guns.
* 91 percent of Americans and 93 percent of gun owners support requiring federal agencies to share information about suspected dangerous persons or terrorists to prevent them from buying guns.
* 89 percent of Americans and 89 percent of gun owners support full funding of the law a unanimous Congress passed and President George W. Bush signed after the Virginia Tech shootings to put more records in the background-check database.
* 86 percent of Americans and 81 percent of gun owners support requiring all gun buyers to pass a background check, no matter where they buy the gun and no matter who they buy it from.
Even polling done by Republican pollster Frank Luntz shows a majority of NRA members support similar measures:
* 82 percent of NRA members were in favor of "prohibiting people on the terrorist watch lists from purchasing guns."
* 69 percent favored "requiring all gun sellers at gun shows to conduct criminal background checks of the people buying guns."
* 78 percent backed "requiring gun owners to alert police if their guns are lost or stolen."It’s time for Congress to step up and fix these deadly flaws in our gun laws. The background check system must include all the names of prohibited purchasers, and the loopholes that let criminals evade background checks must be closed immediately.
April 22nd, 2014
FRANCIS RICHARD MOORE, 92, of FLINT/DAVISON, MI Passed away on Saturday, April 19, 2014, in Escondido, CAHe was Frank to all who knew and loved him, and there were many. ...
January 28th, 2014
In the State of the Union address tonight, President Obama is going to call for a national minimum wage of $10.10. Then in their response ...
January 21st, 2014
My New Year's Day op-ed in the New York Times seems to have kickstarted a discussion about how to make Obamacare better. I hope you ...
December 18th, 2013
This morning it was announced by the Library of Congress and the National Film Preservation Board that my first film, 'Roger & Me', has been ...
December 14th, 2013
[View the story "Michael Moore Tweets on Eve of Newtown Anniversay" on Storify]
November 9th, 2013
Click here for this week's full schedule for the State Theatre and Bijou by the Bay in Traverse City, Michigan. The day has arrived. For ...
September 10th, 2013
[View the story "John Kerry's Accidental Diplomacy" on Storify]
September 11th, 2010
OpenMike 9/11/10 Michael Moore's daily blog I am opposed to the building of the "mosque" two blocks from Ground Zero. I want it built on ...
December 14th, 2010
Yesterday, in the Westminster Magistrates Court in London, the lawyers for WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange presented to the judge a document from me stating that ...
May 12th, 2011
"The Nazis killed tens of MILLIONS. They got a trial. Why? Because we're not like them. We're Americans. We roll different." – Michael Moore in ...
November 22nd, 2011
This past weekend I participated in a four-hour meeting of Occupy Wall Street activists whose job it is to come up with the vision and ...
September 22nd, 2011
I encourage everyone I know to never travel to Georgia, never buy anything made in Georgia, to never do business in Georgia. I will ask ...
December 16th, 2010
Dear Swedish Government: Hi there -- or as you all say, Hallå! You know, all of us here in the U.S. love your country. Your ...
November 2nd, 2010
This letter contains (almost) no criticisms of how the Democrats have brought this day of reckoning upon themselves. That -- and where to go from ...