In case you were wondering what the local reaction to Obama’s proposals was, the Statesman has your answer. Joe McBride was too busy to talk, and they mangled the name of the guy at Tex-Guns (WCD’s official purveyor of fine weapons, who does not currently have a web site). However, they did get long quotes from Steve Rose at Austin Gun Liquidators, and “Gun owner Michael Lombard of Liberty Hill, who said he voted for Obama twice and would do so again…” (!!!!)
The LAT calls the federal background check system “flawed”. Why?
So that’s not “flawed”, that’s “working by design”. Only licensed dealers can run background checks. I, as a private citizen, have no ability to run a check, even if I wanted to; the federal database is simply not available to me.
Edited to add: Forgot to mention this. “…estimated at 40% of all gun sales”. Estimated by who? (Whom?) The LAT cites that figure, but gives absolutely no source for it. Since private sales are private sales – unreported to the government – how is that figure arrived at? What is the methodology? Without a source, the LAT leaves us no way to evaluate that figure.
Federal agencies are supposed to turn over any relevant records — for instance, names of people who failed drug tests or those judged mentally ill — but most, including the Defense Department, haven’t provided anything.
Wait, wait. Federal agencies aren’t doing what they’re supposed to? Stop the freakin’ presses!
Many more records are under the control of states, but progress in moving them into the NICS system has been slow. Studies have shown that millions of criminal and drug cases are still missing, in large part because of difficulties in making state court data mesh with the federal system. Mental health records have been a particularly thorny obstacle: Because of privacy concerns, confusion and the difficulties in finding and converting paper records, most states have made “little or no progress” in turning those records over to NICS, according to a study last year by the Government Accountability Office.
Unstated, but implied here, is that the problem is also partially an IT problem; how do you interface the computer systems of 50 states, plus DC and US territories, with the Federal databases?
On Internet forums there is perhaps no more fiercely discussed topic than the question of what constitutes an assault weapon. And some argue that it would be impossible to come up with a definition comprehensive enough to effectively remove the weapons from the market.
I know this. You know this. People living under rocks know this. But it is nice to see the NYT admit this in print. Of course, the NYT still insists on exaggerating the advantages of pistol grips, folding stocks, “bayonet lugs” (we must stop the drive-by bayonettings!) and “grenade launchers”, but this is a start.