But because background checks don’t apply to many sellers at gun shows, dangerous criminals use the loophole to get their hands on guns.
The bill requires background checks for guns sold at gun shows, flea markets or swap meets. Completing the checks will make it harder for violent criminals, domestic-violence perpetrators and severely mentally ill people to buy guns at the local gun show.
Any private citizen can sell one of their guns to any other private citizen without a background check and it doesn't matter if they're at a gun show or not. All licensed dealers are required to do background checks no matter where they sell the firearm; it doesn't matter if it's their store or a gun show. Using the term "loophole" implies that private sellers are somehow skirting the law or exploiting a poorly written section of the law but this is not the case as private sellers are simply following the law as it was intended to work. Keep in mind that private sellers will still be able to sell guns without a background check - just not at a gun show.
The proposal would make it more difficult for criminals to get guns and yet, at the same time, do nothing to keep law-abiding citizens without histories of criminal activity or mental illness from having legal access to firearms.
Here's a scary thought - who decides what a "mental illness" is? That's the part gun control advocates don't want to talk about. Of course some cases are cut and dry but most aren't. Soldiers returning from battle that are diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder? They'll probably be on the list despite the fact the we let them defend this country while using weaponry more sophisticated than the simple handgun in situations significantly more hostile than you'll find in your local neighborhood.
Supporters of the law claim you can petition to get your named removed, want to take a gander at how difficult that process is going to be? What this law would do is actually discourage people from seeking help from mental health professionals for fear the government would strip them of their constitutional right to bear arms. To recap this legislation:
- Won't keep criminals from obtaining guns
- Doesn't stop private sellers from selling guns without a background check - only at gun shows will they be required to do this
- Will discourage people from seeking mental help
This is a pointless bill that will undoubtedly have more unintended consequences than beneficial ones...