Very few people disagree with the idea that certain individuals should not be allowed to legally access firearms.
Federal law reflects this general consensus by barring felons and those with histories of serious mental health problems from legally purchasing or possessing firearms unless their civil rights have been restored.
But certain members of Congress have recently taken this general consensus as an opportunity to introduce H.R. 8, a poorly constructed bill that would impose significant burdens on law-abiding citizens by mandating “universal background checks.”
With very limited exceptions, the bill would require citizens to pay to obtain services from a for-profit business called a federal firearms licensee prior to transferring any firearm to another person, for any reason.
Here are just a few of H.R. 8’s serious flaws.
1. It doesn’t address the problem.
This bill does nothing to attack the actual sources of illegal firearm possession.
Studies routinely show that most would-be criminals do not obtain their firearms through legitimate legal sources. When would-be criminals do go through licensed dealers or third parties who they know are going to utilize a background check, they do so precisely because they do not have a disqualifying history and will pass that background check.
In other words, the people who are willing to use a firearm to commit crimes aren’t very keen on following laws in order to procure the firearm. They already avoid background checks, and will continue to avoid background checks in largely the same manner—through illegal channels.
2. It would create a monopoly.
Under H.R. 8, private citizens seeking to exercise their constitutional right to keep and bear arms would be forced by the government to first pay for background check services from a for-profit federal firearms licensee.
Read the full story from The Daily Signal
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