Help w/ Argument Against Background Checks for Private Sale


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Uncle Richard
January 17, 2013, 12:58 PM
I believe that background checks should not be required for private sale of firearms, but my argument seems on the weak side. I would appreciate some help to present a stronger justification…..

My reasons are: (1) government should not regulate private transactions, regardless of what is being sold; (2) if I want to sell a firearm to a friend or relative that I’m comfortable with, a background check would be unnecessary.

What other reasons carry more weight?

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ZeSpectre
January 17, 2013, 01:01 PM
3) trying to sell private property is not a crime

4) background checks means a record, a de facto registration

SuperNaut
January 17, 2013, 01:08 PM
Private citizens are barred from using the NICS system; that's kind of a big deal.

nazshooter
January 17, 2013, 01:13 PM
It isn't a right if you have to get permission from the government before exercising it. Ask how they would like it if every book or newspaper issue had to be approved by the government prior to publication.

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Clean97GTI
January 17, 2013, 01:14 PM
The problem is that you are arguing against a method for ensuring the government can do a job legally required of it by the constitution.

The constitution provides for the removal of rights through due process of law. If someone has been stripped of these rights, it is the responsibility of government to enforce the punishment handed down by the court or jury.

The governments operating in this country already regulate many private transactions. If you have financed a car through a dealership in the past ten years or so, you signed a sheet of paper that detailed the exact terms of the loan in very plain english. The math is done for you so you can check it and ensure you are getting the agreed-upon terms. This form is mandated by law.
Do you rent an apartment or home? Do you own your own home? Chances are you purchased or rented from a private company and your transaction was subject to a number of regulations regarding fair housing practices to prevent discrimination. These laws generally outlawed things like blockbusting.
Do you take prescription medications ever? Go to the dentist and get a scrip for some pain meds afterwards? Your transactions are governed by laws regarding the dispensation of prescription medication. Even more apply if your medication is a controlled substance and they are very common these days. A dentist won't think twice about a small prescription of hydrocodone for in-depth dental work.

About the only valid argument is that the onus is on the buyer to know whether or not they have been DQ'd from firearms ownership. While criminal records are generally public record, the accessibility of these systems is not exactly universal nor is it free in many cases. The other problem is that the seller has no responsibility to police who buys the gun. It is not your job or my job to verify that a buyer is not breaking the law. The right to keep and bear arms is to be cherished for those who still posses it. Those who have forfeited it by becoming a felon deserve no such protection and the NICS check is a good way to sort out who still has this right. A trip to your local police station or gun store to verify a buyer is not too much to ask.

JustinJ
January 17, 2013, 02:11 PM
When somebody proposes something it is generally better to attack their arguments first as they are the one calling for action.

However, if you believe you don't have a strong reason for your position why do you hold it in the first place?

Teachu2
January 17, 2013, 02:14 PM
If I sell a gun, I WANT a background check on the buyer - takes the spotlight off of me if there's a problem later.

Quick Draw McGraw
January 17, 2013, 02:34 PM
It isn't a right if you have to get permission from the government before exercising it. Ask how they would like it if every book or newspaper issue had to be approved by the government prior to publication.

I don't really see that as being a very valid comparison. To me it'd be more like comparing a background check to needing to show your press pass at an event or even supplying your username and password to log in to post on your blog. Given criminals' propensity for abusing rights, we unfortunately have to be watchful.

Hey maybe we should just come up with a law-abiding gun-owner's secret handshake.

Spartacus
January 17, 2013, 02:51 PM
Adding more rules and regulations only affects those who follow the rules. I am a law abiding citizen. I work, raise a family and pay my taxes. I'm essentially being punished because criminals don't follow the existing rules and regulations. If the law requires me to do background checks before I can legally sell a firearm, I will do so, because I obey the law. The cocaine dealer that throws down drug money for a full auto will not be affected.

deadin
January 17, 2013, 02:57 PM
Other than a perceived invasion of privacy, which really has nothing to do with firearms, what's the problem? You already have you privacy invaded every time you apply for a job, ask for credit or purchase from a dealer. If for some reason a buyer can't qualify to buy from a dealer, they shouldn't qualify to buy from a private source. (Other than the 18 YO vs. 21 YO disconnect between Federal law and State laws. These laws should be brought into alignment.)
I see a problem if, as part of the check, they also record firearm serial numbers, etc. (which they don't do currently.) We will have to wait and see how it shakes out.
One problem will be the bureaucratic nightmare created and we will obviously end up being charged more "fees" to exercise our rights.

Quick Draw McGraw
January 17, 2013, 03:08 PM
The cocaine dealer that throws down drug money for a full auto will not be affected.

Very true, such a law will not affect one criminal selling to another criminal, but I can see such checks being effective when a law-abiding gun-owner is the seller and a criminal is the buyer. As it is now, I can ask to see an ID, but that is by no means any indication that someone is not a criminal. I would guess in most cases it would probably mean that criminals would not attempt to buy from a gun owner that would do the nics check for fear of being denied and flagged. They would still get their guns through non-legal means, but at least it would cut down access a little bit. Maybe drive up the price of illegal guns, heh.

lloveless
January 17, 2013, 03:23 PM
I don't see that doing a nics for a private sale is going to help deter crime. We pretty well know to whom we sell. I really doubt criminals follow ads to buy a gun.
ll

Quick Draw McGraw
January 17, 2013, 03:36 PM
We pretty well know to whom we sell.

Well I guess that is a good policy, but is it one that everyone follows? I guess I personally have only dealt with people I know when doing private transactions in the past, but I know of cases where friends have dealt with strangers as well.

Kiln
January 17, 2013, 03:39 PM
Lets see how background checks would have stopped either of the last two mass shootings:

1. The man involved in the Aurora theater shooting was not a criminal (prior to the shooting) and therefore background checks wouldn't have stopped him from getting a weapon. Even if the gun he wanted was illegal, he would have simply accomplished his goal through other means. He booby trapped his house with 30+ explosive devices so something tells me that if he hadn't gotten a rifle, he would've just used a backpack full of explosives instead.

2. The Sandy Hook Elementary shooting. This was done by a man who killed his own mother by shooting her four times in the head and then taking her firearms. There's no way a background check would have changed the outcome of this because the guns were never actually passed to his hands by anyone.

I'm sorry but background checks won't be obeyed by people who are passing guns around under the radar anyways. Magically saying that everyone must now do a background check isn't going to make it actually happen, especially with people who want to do things like the two horrible events that I listed previously.

boatmanschneider
January 17, 2013, 03:45 PM
What is to stop them from including "Christians, Returning vets and Ron Paul supporters" on the list of people to be denied the ability to purchase a fire arm?

What other studies will come out and be used by politicians to advance their agenda?

I don't want them to have that power.

Old Fuff
January 17, 2013, 03:51 PM
The proposal to require background checks does not mean that individual sellers can personally check out a potential buyer. The game plan is to require that all sales be made through a FFL dealer, including that the firearm(s) be entered in their bound book, and a #4473 form be filled out and retained by the dealer.

To a lot of private sellers that could make a big difference, and someone would have to pay the dealer whatever fee they demanded.

The procedure would do nothing to prevent straw buyer sales or the use of forged identification documents.

While the Constitution grants the federal government the power to regulate interstate business, it does not empower them to do the same with intrastate sales of private property. But a lack of clear constitutional authority does not concern the advocates of a big, all-powerful federal government.

Placing intrastate private sales under the FFL umbrella increases the probability that the information will eventually end up in a central database where it can be used to force registration or even confiscation.

Quick Draw McGraw
January 17, 2013, 04:02 PM
Well I don't really want to become the spokesperson for background checks, so I'll take a break after this post. Definitely not a hill I want to die on.

But, I don't feel that saying:
What is to stop them from including "Christians, Returning vets and Ron Paul supporters" on the list of people to be denied the ability to purchase a fire arm?
is the best argument to use when discussing this with an anti. I could see it being construed that you are actually arguing that you want to have a way to circumvent the law regarding who is allowed to possess firearms. I do think I understand your sentiment, but I would think the key would be making sure, through our votes and political activism, that there is no expansion of the "people to be denied" as opposed to trying to find ways around the prohibitions.

Also,

The proposal to require background checks does not mean that individual sellers can personally check out a potential buyer. The game plan is to require that all sales be made through a FFL dealer, including that the firearm(s) be entered in their bound book, and a #4473 form be filled out and retained by the dealer.

That may indeed change things. It is of course one thing to simply suggest, "you should make sure the person you are selling to is not a criminal," but taking it further, which it sounds like might be the case, could have different implications. I think that's similar in the background check vs. pseudo-registration balance as well.

tyeo098
January 17, 2013, 04:02 PM
1. The man involved in the Aurora theater shooting was not a criminal (prior to the shooting) and therefore background checks wouldn't have stopped him from getting a weapon. Even if the gun he wanted was illegal, he would have simply accomplished his goal through other means. He booby trapped his house with 30+ explosive devices so something tells me that if he hadn't gotten a rifle, he would've just used a backpack full of explosives instead.

2. The Sandy Hook Elementary shooting. This was done by a man who killed his own mother by shooting her four times in the head and then taking her firearms. There's no way a background check would have changed the outcome of this because the guns were never actually passed to his hands by anyone.

This needs to be repeated everywhere.

Kiln
January 17, 2013, 04:07 PM
This needs to be repeated everywhere.
Everyone should spread it because it is a FACT that cannot be argued against..

On__Target
January 17, 2013, 04:10 PM
If we believe that the right to keep and bear arms (for the purpose of preservation of human life against those evil persons who would threaten our lives) is a natural human right (not granted by the US Constitution but acknowledged there) then the government should have no say whatsoever in transactions by law-abiding citizens in this matter.

We agree that we should not need governmental approval prior to writing a news article, sending a letter, going to church, or posting on the Internet. This matter should be no different.

deadin
January 17, 2013, 05:16 PM
The game plan is to require that all sales be made through a FFL dealer, including that the firearm(s) be entered in their bound book, and a #4473 form be filled out and retained by the dealer.

Old Fuff,
I can believe that but, as of right now, do you have solid documentation that this is true of is it just conjecture?

beatledog7
January 17, 2013, 05:53 PM
I'll make this simple:

1) Arrest violent criminal
2) Try him
3) Convict him if you can. If you can't, track him until you can arrest him again. Try him. Repeat as needed.
4) Sentence him IAW his crime
5) Lock him up
6) Lose the key

Now, all the known violent criminals are in prison. No background checks to detect a violent criminal record required.

AlexanderA
January 17, 2013, 05:56 PM
Old Fuff wrote:

The proposal to require background checks does not mean that individual sellers can personally check out a potential buyer. The game plan is to require that all sales be made through a FFL dealer, including that the firearm(s) be entered in their bound book, and a #4473 form be filled out and retained by the dealer.

That may be the most likely path to "universal background checks," but it doesn't have to be that way. As an alternative, the NICS could be opened to private individuals, who, after entering the identifying information of the buyer (no identifying information on the gun) would get a "proceed" or "don't proceed" indication. (The buyer would fill out a Form 4473, which would be kept by the seller.) Heck, this could even be made voluntary. The incentive to participate would be immunity from civil liability if the gun was later misused.

If anything in Obama's plan is passed, this "universal check" would be it. We need to be thinking of counterproposals if it looks like this thing is making headway.

I have a sneaking suspicion that funneling the checks through FFL's is a way to gain their support for the plan (after all, this would be an additional stream of income for them). That's the strategy of "co-opting stakeholders," or, if you will, "dividing and conquering."

StewNTexas
January 17, 2013, 05:59 PM
If you get the background check, what will they want? Is it like the NICS checks where no record is made of the serial number, or will the 'new' system want lots of other info.

If you do this, does this make it a documented exchange of firearms?

What about one you get in a will from a relative? Would this be undocumented?

Remember what the 'Left' thinks undocumented means. You may get some free healthcare, some foodstamps and a free Obama phone.

Clean97GTI
January 17, 2013, 06:14 PM
The possibility that was mentioned in another thread was to include on any state issued ID a line that says NO FIREARMS or something to that effect. All the criminal background/mental deficient checking is already done and is easily accessible to a private seller without the need to create more paperwork or unreasonable demands like a private citizen keeping a 4473 for 20 years.

A more stringent background check would not have stopped the Sandy Hook shooter nor is the universal check being floated as an idea to stop such tragedies on its own. The idea is to create more responsibility about how and when guns move between individuals. Accountability for ones own firearms is stressed. The acquisition process becomes similar for all gun purchases.
This type of checking system may do more to make guns less accessible to those who regularly commit violent offenses with them rather than the guy who snaps after watching too much Bill O'Reilly and Doomsday Prepper reality TV.

bri
January 17, 2013, 06:31 PM
An improved background check system is the only proposal that I agree with in all of this craziness.

You can't deny that this would help.

radiotom
January 17, 2013, 06:31 PM
An improved background check system is the only proposal that I agree with in all of this craziness.

You can't deny that this would help.
What would it help do?

hogshead
January 17, 2013, 06:54 PM
This like reading a forum on Brady Campaign web page. So many of you are ready to fold and give them gun registration. Because that is exactly what it is and if you think otherwise your a fool. So keep on agreeing with the left right up till they come and take your last single shot rifle and register your slingshot. Its kinda interesting that Obama didn't even make it through his first term as president and started the gun grabbing and its kind of depressing to watch gun owners still getting sucked in by his lies.

Old Fuff
January 17, 2013, 06:59 PM
Old Fuff,
I can believe that but, as of right now, do you have solid documentation that this is true of is it just conjecture?

Feel free to research the bill yourself. (See link below). Then I have excerpted one paragraph that cuts to the real intentions.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=695620&highlight=background+check

Text of H.R.137 Fix Gun Checks Act of 2013

`(c) Responsibilities of Transferees Other Than Licensees-

`(1) IN GENERAL- It shall be unlawful for an unlicensed transferee to receive a firearm from an unlicensed transferor, unless the firearm is transferred--
`(A)(i) through a licensed dealer under subsection (d);

wooly bugger
January 17, 2013, 07:05 PM
Why can't they make the NICS system available to the public for free? And why can't they attach a law that NICS records must be destroyed after a certain period? It would be a negligible inconvenience and let's face it, it would prevent some ineligible individuals from buying. I don't think there would be vigilante government employees secretly keeping the records against the law. It would be to no one's benefit.

bri
January 17, 2013, 07:08 PM
What would it help do?
Currently, in a private sale, how would you determine if the buyer was a felon or mentally unfit to own a firearm?

beatledog7
January 17, 2013, 07:17 PM
Currently, in a private sale, how would you determine if the buyer was a felon or mentally unfit to own a firearm?

I know who to whom I'm selling and exercise good judgment. Ever heard of it?

Old Fuff
January 17, 2013, 07:20 PM
Why can't they make the NICS system available to the public for free? And why can't they attach a law that NICS records must be destroyed after a certain period? It would be a negligible inconvenience and let's face it, it would prevent some ineligible individuals from buying. I don't think there would be vigilante government employees secretly keeping the records against the law. It would be to no one's benefit.


Because what they really want is the information on the #4473 form in a National Database; and the statute that specified background checks was limited to sales made by licensed dealers that were involved in interstate commerce. They have unquestioned power under the Constitution to regulate interstate commerce, but not intrastate commerce, which by default is left to the states. Now they are looking to see what they might be able to get away with.

What they eventually want is a database with the names of all the gun owners, and a list of all the guns they own.

AlexanderA
January 17, 2013, 07:20 PM
Background checks do not equate with gun registration, if no records are kept of the guns being transferred. This would especially be true if the checks did not involve FFL's. As a seller, you should be able to call a toll-free number (or go to a Web site), enter the identifying information of the buyer, and get an instant "yes" or "no" answer. If the answer is no, then the seller and buyer can go to an FFL (or a local police agency) and get a more extensive check done.

I frankly don't understand the paranoia that a simple idea like this seems to engender. When I've sold guns, I've either been an FFL, or gone through FFL's. Accessing NICS as a private individual would be a big convenience for me.

Queen_of_Thunder
January 17, 2013, 07:20 PM
The laws governing the sale of a firearm should be told go the news folks. If I sale a gun to a felon I go to jail.

Old Fuff
January 17, 2013, 07:36 PM
Background checks do not equate with gun registration, if no records are kept of the guns being transferred. This would especially be true if the checks did not involve FFL's. As a seller, you should be able to call a toll-free number (or go to a Web site), enter the identifying information of the buyer, and get an instant "yes" or "no" answer. If the answer is no, then the seller and buyer can go to an FFL (or a local police agency) and get a more extensive check done.

You still don't get it... :banghead:

What YOU want is not what THEY want, and they are the ones writing the bills.

I frankly don't understand the paranoia that a simple idea like this seems to engender. When I've sold guns, I've either been an FFL, or gone through FFL's. Accessing NICS as a private individual would be a big convenience for me.

If that's what you want to do it's your business, but again they are not likely to change the bill to reflect what you want. WHAT THEY WANT IS WHAT THEY WANT!

ktmmudd
January 17, 2013, 07:38 PM
Ever heard of a poll tax? This is another case of the government charging a fee to exercise a right. How much uproar would ensue if you had to pay a fee to express an opinion, or to read a book or attend church? Why is it OK for 2nd amendment rights?

justice06rr
January 17, 2013, 07:49 PM
That may be the most likely path to "universal background checks," but it doesn't have to be that way. As an alternative, the NICS could be opened to private individuals, who, after entering the identifying information of the buyer (no identifying information on the gun) would get a "proceed" or "don't proceed" indication. (The buyer would fill out a Form 4473, which would be kept by the seller.) Heck, this could even be made voluntary. The incentive to participate would be immunity from civil liability if the gun was later misused.

If anything in Obama's plan is passed, this "universal check" would be it. We need to be thinking of counterproposals if it looks like this thing is making headway.



This may actually make some sense. Voluntary would be great, but with BO's plan, i'm sure they will push for Mandatory checks for everyone.

The downsides to the background checks is added time, cost, and hassle for buyers and sellers everywhere.

The NICS system would have to be heavily upgraded to handle this traffic, and also monitored that people are not using fake or inaccurate info. As we all know, if you mistakenly put even one wrong answer to a 4473 like your birthday or country of birth, you get a long delay. Multiply that times millions of private sellers checking the NICS, and you got hours and days of delay.

REDMASTA
January 17, 2013, 07:50 PM
I dont personally know enough people who are gun enthusiasts to sell my firearms too so in the past ive listed them online using the classified section on a couple forums. They were all shipped to an ffl which I confirmed to be legit using the atf ez check.

Even if someone local wanted to buy id make them go through an ffl as I have no idea who they are. If it was a close friend or family, sure that would be different but unfortunately thats not always an option.

nazshooter
January 17, 2013, 08:29 PM
The problem is that you are arguing against a method for ensuring the government can do a job legally required of it by the constitution.

Nowhere does the Constitution require the Federal government to regulate who may or may not buy a gun, in fact they are explicitly restricted from doing so by the 2a.



The constitution provides for the removal of rights through due process of law. If someone has been stripped of these rights, it is the responsibility of government to enforce the punishment handed down by the court or jury.



The due process clause prevents the government from depriving you of life, liberty, or property without due process. You'll notice, however that there is no such wording in the 2a, so they may not deny those rights even with due process.



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nazshooter
January 17, 2013, 08:57 PM
I don't think there would be vigilante government employees secretly keeping the records against the law. It would be to no one's benefit.

The government already has a long history of keeping records they have no business keeping and using them to harass inconvenient people and groups. Remember too that these are the same folks that sold thousands of weapons to the Mexican cartels and then tried to use the results as evidence that we need additional restrictions on our rights.

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deadin
January 17, 2013, 10:49 PM
Anything in the proposals about the Government calling in the 4473's?
Or will they stay with the FFL like they do now?

barnbwt
January 17, 2013, 11:16 PM
Seems like if we responsible gun owners would simply refuse to sell to shady guys we don't know well, this whole deal becomes a complete non-issue. And if we're afraid that irresponsible people will act irresponsibly, well, no law will prevent that anyway. (I'm still waiting to see a study tracking a couple thousand illegally used firearms used in random crimes all over the country, to see how many were ever legally owned, let alone improperly transferred by a regular citizen to a prohibited person (straw purchases don't count as "legal possession" by the buyer either))

The problem is that you are arguing against a method for ensuring the government can do a job legally required of it by the constitution.
The government has no Constitutional basis for pre-empting illegal behavior of its citizens by restricting their enumerated rights. The Constitution only requires that illegal behavior be prosecuted according to laws applied equally to all citizens, and if found deserving of punishment, penalizing them, removing them from society, or curtailing their rights.

TCB

Uncle Richard
January 18, 2013, 12:08 AM
Lets see how background checks would have stopped either of the last two mass shootings:

1. The man involved in the Aurora theater shooting was not a criminal (prior to the shooting) and therefore background checks wouldn't have stopped him from getting a weapon. Even if the gun he wanted was illegal, he would have simply accomplished his goal through other means. He booby trapped his house with 30+ explosive devices so something tells me that if he hadn't gotten a rifle, he would've just used a backpack full of explosives instead.

2. The Sandy Hook Elementary shooting. This was done by a man who killed his own mother by shooting her four times in the head and then taking her firearms. There's no way a background check would have changed the outcome of this because the guns were never actually passed to his hands by anyone.

I'm sorry but background checks won't be obeyed by people who are passing guns around under the radar anyways. Magically saying that everyone must now do a background check isn't going to make it actually happen, especially with people who want to do things like the two horrible events that I listed previously.

So far Kiln has the strongest argument in my opinion.

It boils down to legislation doesn't stop evil.

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