Should private gun sales be subject to background checks? [POLL]

This is a discussion on Should private gun sales be subject to background checks? [POLL] within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; No, and for two very good minor reasons. They would have to either give access to criminal and medical records to any regular Joe, or ...

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Thread: Should private gun sales be subject to background checks? [POLL]

  1. #46
    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    No, and for two very good minor reasons.

    They would have to either give access to criminal and medical records to any regular Joe, or force people to transfer either at some government office or with a FFL.

    The first they will not do, and when considering the second only think about the stupidity at any DMV or the small fact that currently the ATF is seemingly attempting to shut down as many Gunstores as possible.

    Now for the major reason why this would be bad.

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

    -U. S. Constitution
    I am of the opinion that just about everybody selling a weapon Face to Face should get a bill of sale with a photocopy of a driverslicense or other identifying information. Key word being "should". If you don't well that may or may not be an idiotic choice, but either way it is your choice and there will be consequences. (good or bad).
    Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.

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  3. #47
    VIP Member Array David in FL's Avatar
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    Another "no" here. 62%/36%.

    If the option were available to me, I'd certainly use it. But require it, I'm not there.....

  4. #48
    Senior Member Array cmidkiff's Avatar
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    What other sale of private property do you have to alert the government to?

    I can understand wanting to keep from selling a firearm to a prohibited person, but a firearms registry is hardly the only way to do it. There is no reason why you need the make, model, or serial number of the firearm in order to determine if the person receiving it is a criminal.

    If there were an online (or phone) system that I could enter a name, address, and DOB into, and get a simple yes/no response... I guess that would be handy.

    Right now, we have a system where you have to enter the ID of the person requesting the check (only FFL's can do it, they know who you are), and the make/model/serial of the gun, and the ID of the person receiving the gun. I may not be a rocket scientist... but I'm not an idiot. Back door or otherwise, that's a registry. As a computer programmer, you will never convince me that information isn't being recorded somewhere.
    Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle. Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. It's worth it.

  5. #49
    New Member Array semlak0316's Avatar
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    The start of this thread was the basic question, "Should one on one gun sales by private citizens be subject to background checks"? While I agree with most of the concerns that have been stated, I do not understand how or why a background check would be an issue? I have a some experience in doing backgound checks and rather you do it through a website or a private service, a background check can be done with no relevance to a certain act. i.e. a gun sale, employment or what ever. Now I understand the concern of that is just opening the door for possible other "requirements" down the road, but all I was doing was giving an opinion on a question. I still believe if it saves me from possible accountability down the road or I am buying I have nothing to worry to purchase. Why do I care??

  6. #50
    VIP Member Array SammyIamToday's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by semlak0316 View Post
    I still believe if it saves me from possible accountability down the road or I am buying I have nothing to worry to purchase. Why do I care??
    That's something else that's quite ridiculous. That you should be accountable for what another person did.
    ...He suggested that "every American citizen" should own a rifle and train with it on firing ranges "at every courthouse." -Chesty Puller

  7. #51
    VIP Member Array rodc13's Avatar
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    How about background checks for automobile sales? Someone might use your '68 Impala to commit a crime. Definitely background checks should be required for knife sales. That guy could be the next "Sweeny Todd". And computer sales, too, since the person who buys one could be a malicious mentally ill hacker bent on unleashing the next mega-virus which costs us millions of dollars to clean up and compromises national security. We need the gubmint to protect us from ourselves.

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  8. #52
    Senior Member Array DPro.40's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by packinnova View Post

    Frankly some of the other responses on here scare me a bit. Perhaps we should require background checks before we sell our cars "private sale" eh? They're dangerous too right? I mean just this past year some ding dong somewhere plowed through a crowded marketplace. Whether I'm selling a soccer ball, car, pack of smokes, or a firearm makes no difference. The government should NOT under any circumstances be given the power to control that transaction. What they have is already too much.



    So your suggesting that rather than fix our fouled up, bastardized court system, we should give up more of our lives to be controlled by some outside collective (otherwise known as the "government")?
    Last count
    Yes 36%
    No 62%
    Undecided%

    Its the government that has the problem is in their systems, checks and balances. They have their noses in our personal business way too much now. As I have always said before, revisions need to start in the legal system first. Its simple, enforce the current laws and recognize criminals don't recognize laws. Stop waisting our tax dollars on chasing us. If the Supremes recognize individual rights then perhaps it wont matter who becomes president in the future. Their running platform will change.
    Some of the responses here scare me too. Looks like some have focused on a small part of the how freedom effects them and not freedom as it applies to the masses. That being said, Please raise your hand if you think history repeats itself. A side bar comment: Do you think if Hillary becomes President, the first woman president; do you think she will have something to prove and who do you think she will go after. You wont have to worry about private guns sales. There wont be any.
    Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.
    Ronald Reagan

  9. #53
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    These 'instant checks' are just another way to slowly accomplish full registration of firearms. Which for those who read & learn history ends in....well, we all know where it leads.

    As to those who really think that registration is ok.....Here is a related article that addresses treating guns like automobiles:

    Taking It to the Streets
    Why treating guns like cars might not be such a bad idea
    By David B. Kopel


    Should we treat guns like cars? Handgun Control Inc. has been saying so for years, and this summer Vice President Al Gore agreed. "We require a license to drive a car in this nation in order to keep unsafe drivers off the road," Gore said. "As president, I will fight for a national requirement that every state issue photo licenses [for handgun buyers]. We should require a license to own a handgun so people who shouldn't have them can't get them." Prospective licensees should have to "pass a background test and pass a gun safety test." Gore predicted that his plan would cause the gun lobby to "have a fit."

    Actually, if Gore follows through on his promise to treat guns like cars, he will oversee the most massive decontrol of firearms in America since 1868, when the 14th Amendment abolished the Southern states' Black Codes, which prevented freedmen from owning guns.

    Although anti-gun lobbyists who use the car analogy are pushing for additional controls, laws that really did treat guns like cars would be much less restrictive, on the whole, than what we have now.

    The first thing to go would be the 1986 federal ban on the manufacture of machine guns for sale to ordinary citizens. We don't ban cars like Porsches just because they are high-powered and can drive much faster than the speed limit. Even though it's a lot easier to go 50 miles per hour over the highway speed limit in a Porsche than in a Hyundai, we let people own any car they want, no matter what its potential for abuse.

    After getting rid of the machine gun ban, the next step toward treating cars like guns would be repealing the 1994 federal "assault weapon" ban and its analogs in California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and a few other jurisdictions. So-called assault weapons are actually ordinary guns that fire just one bullet each time the trigger is pressed, but they happen to look like machine guns. Just as we don't ban powerful Porsches (which actually can go very fast), we don't ban less-powerful vehicles that simply look like high-performance cars.

    Likewise, we don't ban autos because they are underpowered, or because they're made with low-quality metal. If you want a Yugo, you can buy one. So the state-level bans on inexpensive guns (a.k.a. "junk guns" or "Saturday night specials") will have to go, along with the federal rules against the import of cheap guns.

    Also slated for elimination under the treat-cars-like-guns rule are thousands of laws regulating the purchase of firearms and their possession on private property. The simple purchase of an automobile is subject to essentially no restrictions. When you show up at the dealer's showroom, he will not conduct a background check to find out if you have a conviction for vehicular homicide, or if you've been arrested for drunk driving, or even if you have a driver's license. All you need is money.

    The only "waiting period" to buy a car runs from the time you pay for it (with cash, a certified check, or a loan document) to the time the salesman hands you the keys. This waiting period tends to run from 30 seconds to five minutes. In contrast, firearms are the only product in this country for which FBI permission (via the national background check) is required for every single retail purchase.

    If you keep your automobile on private property, there are virtually no restrictions. Even though your driver's license was revoked last week, you can drive your Jeep on your ranch as much as you want. Indeed, you can drink a case of beer before you go driving around your ranch, and enjoy the ride knowing that you are not violating a single law. (Of course, if any form of negligent or reckless conduct with your auto on your own property results in injury to an innocent person or to someone else's property, you will be financially responsible, and you may be prosecuted for violating laws against reckless endangerment.)

    Thus, we can get rid of all the laws concerning gun storage in the home, together with the laws that ban possession of guns by various persons on private property. Current federal law outlaws gun possession, on private as well as public property, by anyone who has ever been convicted of a felony (even a nonviolent one), anyone with a misdemeanor involving domestic violence (such as two brothers who had a fistfight on their front lawn 30 years ago), anyone who has been dishonorably discharged from the military, any alcoholic, any illegal drug user (defined by regulation as anyone who has used drugs in the last year), any illegal alien, and various other "prohibited persons." Some states, such as Massachusetts, go even further, making all gun possession presumptively illegal, except for persons with special licenses. Once we really treat guns like cars, all of these laws will be swept away.

    Most cities do prohibit property owners from storing their cars in an unsightly manner (say, on cinder blocks in the front yard), or from parking too many cars on the public street in front of their homes. Fair enough. Gun owners will have to accept laws against leaving nonfunctional guns strewn about their front yard, and they will not be allowed to leave excessive numbers of guns on the street. (Anti-gun groups frequently complain that there are "too many guns on the street.")

    If you have a car on your own property, you can hitch it to a trailer, have it pulled to someone else's property, and drive the car on his property (assuming you have his permission). As long as your car is just being towed, you don't need a driver's license or plates. Thus, gun owners should be allowed to transport their unloaded guns to private property (a shooting gallery, for example) for use on that property. Jurisdictions such as New York City would no longer have the power to require a separate "target permit" just to take a gun to the local pistol range.

    But now suppose that you want to use your car on public property, such as a street or an old logging trail in a national forest. Then a licensing system does come into play--but only because the car will be used in public. For a license that allows you to drive a car anywhere in public, most states require that you 1) be at least 15 or 16 years old; 2) take a written safety test that requires an IQ of no more than 75 to pass; and 3) show an examiner that you know how to operate a car and how to obey basic safety rules and traffic signs.
    Your license may be revoked or suspended if, while driving in public, you violate certain safety rules or cause an accident. Except in egregious cases (such as killing someone while driving with extreme recklessness), first or second offenses do not usually result in license revocations. Once the driver's license is issued, it is good in every state of the union.

    These driver's license requirements seem to be what Gore has in mind for handguns, although he fails to recognize that the requirements apply only to cars used in public, not cars possessed in private. The vice president's mistake is understandable, given his lack of driving experience in the years since the taxpayers have been paying for his full-time chauffeur. (In July, Gore warned that the 2000 election is "no time to take a far-right U-turn." He apparently did not realize that on American roads, it is impossible to make a U-turn to the right.)

    The guns-like-cars licensing system touted by Gore is already in effect in 30 states, where adults with a clean record can obtain a permit to carry a concealed handgun for lawful protection. (Vermont requires no permit.) Making the concealed handgun licensing system exactly like the driver licensing system would involve a few tweaks, namely: 1) reducing the minimum age for a license (21 or 25 in most states); 2) reducing the fees (which can run over $100 in many states); 3) mandating a written exam in the minority of states that do not currently have one; 4) adding a practical demonstration test, which most states do not currently have (but which Texas does); and 5) making the licenses valid everywhere, instead of just in the issuing state. And of course, the 19 states that currently don't give handgun carry permits to every person with a clean record would have to change their laws.

    A few states already require licensees to register one or two specific guns that will be carried. Under the treat-guns-like-cars rule, every gun carried in public would have to be registered, and the owner would have to pay an annual or semiannual registration tax. The registration would also apply to hunting or target shooting guns used on public lands.

    Once you get a driver's license, you can drive your car anywhere that is open to the public. Thus, we will have to repeal all the laws against carrying guns within 1,000 feet of a school, or in bars, or on government property.

    Although legislative bodies regulate gun design (through laws banning machine guns, "assault weapons," and inexpensive guns), no federal agency has the authority to impose new design standards on firearms. In contrast, federal regulators do impose a wide variety of safety rules on automobiles. Some of these rules, such as mandatory passenger-side air bags, end up killing people.

    So the one major way in which treating guns like cars would lead to more-restrictive gun laws would be to allow federal regulators to impose design mandates on firearms. Some of these regulations will, like automobile safety rules, cause the deaths of innocent people. Certain kinds of trigger locks, for example, can cause a loaded gun to fire when it is dropped, and a "magazine disconnect" can prevent a gun owner from firing his weapon when he is attacked. But if we accept death from regulation for cars, then perhaps we will have to accept it for guns as well.

    Faced with the prospect of really treating guns like cars, gun prohibitionists tend to change their minds. They begin arguing that there are important differences in dangerousness between guns and cars. This is true. Cars are much more dangerous.

    The Independence Institute's Robert Racansky points out that in 1994 (the last year for which data are available), there were 32 auto deaths for every 100,000 autos in the United States. The same year, there were 16 firearm deaths for every 100,000 firearms in the United States. Put another way, in any given year, the average car is twice as likely as the average gun to cause a death.

    And more than 95 percent of gun deaths are intentional (suicide or homicide), while most auto deaths are accidents. This shows how dangerous cars really are: They are twice as likely to kill as guns are, even though the killer behind the wheel does not intend to take a life. Plus, most people who die from guns are suicides who choose to die, but almost none of the people who die in car crashes choose to die.
    Another argument against treating guns like cars, of course, is that gun ownership is explicitly protected by the U.S. Constitution and by 44 state constitutions, while car ownership has no such special status. On the other hand, if the groups that call for treating guns like cars followed their own advice, they would immediately disband. There are no major Washington lobby groups arguing that people should be able to buy a car only if the government decides they need one, or that people should use only public transportation, instead of private vehicles, during life-threatening emergencies.

    Yet Handgun Control Inc.'s Sarah Brady favors "needs-based licensing" for firearms. "To me," she told the Tampa Tribune, "the only reason for guns in civilian hands is for sporting purposes." In response to the question of whether there are legitimate reasons for owning a handgun, Brady's husband and fellow anti-gun activist, Jim Brady, told Parade magazine: "For target shooting, that's OK. Get a license and go to the range. For defense of the home, that's why we have police departments."

    Even if the anti-gun groups did not disband, they would have to change their style dramatically. People who own cars, and who belong to pro-car lobbying groups (such as the American Automobile Association), are treated respectfully by those who disagree with them. They are not routinely denounced when a criminal with a car kills someone.

    A few days after the Columbine High School murders last April, Steve Abrams deliberately drove his Cadillac onto a playground in Costa Mesa, California, killing a 3-year-old and a 4-year-old. No one showed up on television to claim that General Motors, car owners in general, or anyone other than Steve Abrams was responsible for this crime. Politicians did not try to use Abrams' murderous act to create a campaign issue or stir up support for restrictions on law-abiding car owners. If gun owners were treated like car owners, they would not be vilified by smug moral imperialists with the energetic assistance of the president and most of the national news media. Sad to say, that would be progress.
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. If I have a gun, what do I have to be paranoid about?" -Clint Smith

    "An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." -Jeff Cooper

  10. #54
    New Member Array justmac's Avatar
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    62% NO and 35% yes and 2% undecided as of 2:33 PM 01_21_08

    Justmac

  11. #55
    Member Array Tye_Defender's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Janq View Post
    As to sale how does a person you've bought from pass on your info to the ATF or FBI or state/local PD when they come knocking asking about X, Y, or Z firearm they are federally registered as having purchased in XX year and has now been traced to a crime?
    How did the ATF or FBI get their name? What is this "federally registered" thing you are talking about? I don't know of any federal register for firearms, but if they wanted to set one up, I would be opposed to that as well.

  12. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tye_Defender View Post
    How did the ATF or FBI get their name? What is this "federally registered" thing you are talking about? I don't know of any federal register for firearms, but if they wanted to set one up, I would be opposed to that as well.
    Right now, when a firearm needs to be traced the BATFE will go to the manufacture. The maker will tell them which FFL holder was sold the gun. They will then go to the FFL holder & search his transfer forms for the 'owner'. They will then go to the 'owner' & politely ask you where the firearm is.....(sarcasm in the last bit).

    What the BATFE would like is to cut out ALL the middle men. The way to accomplish that is to make you register ALL your firearms....Then they can come straight to your doorstep. They already have this registration in a number of states........Ever heard of a FOID card?
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. If I have a gun, what do I have to be paranoid about?" -Clint Smith

    "An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." -Jeff Cooper

  13. #57
    Senior Member Array Pitmaster's Avatar
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    I sure would want an added cost to every gun purchase. Plus I may like to make an impulse purchase at gun shows, the range, etc.
    Pitmaster

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    HAGAR: To sign a peace treaty with the King of England.
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  14. #58
    Distinguished Member Array kazzaerexys's Avatar
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    Earlier in this thread, somebody (Janq, maybe?) suggested such background checks for FTF transfers as a seller's option. I could go with that notion, if done right.

    Frankly, this is what I think about most gov't regulation---it should be optional with an identifiable benefity, and that benefit should almost always be indemnity from civil liability.

    Sell a gun... Pay $10 for the NICS check, and you can never be sued for anything the buyer does with the gun, or choose to skip the check and take your chances. Do you work for a pharmaceutical company? Pay to get an FDA approval for your new wonderdrug and you can't be sued for anything that happens to people using it the way it is approved, or sell direct without approval and open yourself up to liability.

    There are plenty of other ways this approach could be applied, but I personally like these two examples.

    goawayfarm: Great article! I may have to clip and save that one...

  15. #59
    Member Array bmwaddicted's Avatar
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    Private party transactions are the only way to go in my opinion. Out of all the firearms I have, only three of them have paperwork. I don't think its the governments business when I purchase a firearm. I also don't feel the slightest bit liable when I sell a gun to someone. Im, as of now, not breaking the law when I sell a gun to anyone. I don't ask to see their ID, all I need to see is the amount of money I want for the gun and a hand shake. Cash and carry is how I do business. Even if I see a gun I really want, If it has papers I'll won't buy it on principle.

  16. #60
    VIP Member Array tns0038's Avatar
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    I only sell firearms through a licensed firearm dealer.

    Back in the 70ís my dad was paid a visit from the ATF, who was investigating a bank robbery. It seems the BG was shot while in the process of robbing the bank, and guess whose pistol he had.

    My dad had traded the pistol at a gun show and while there was a bill of sale exchange, there was no other paper work record. While I dough my Dad would have been in any trouble if he had not kept the receipt, I glad he did.

    So for me, while I donít want to make gun dealers rich off the process, I think all firearm sales should require a background check, and some kind of paper work for transfer.

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