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David Lewisbey was a star football player at Thornton High School in Harvey, Illinois, south of Chicago. His nickname was "Big Man." He was reportedly well liked and doing very well with his business in the community.

On May 14, 2014, Federal District Judge Ronald A. Guzman sentenced him to 16 years, eight months, in Federal prison for gunrunning. Lewisbey's lawyer urged a light sentence. He pointed to the record showing Lewisbey never shot anyone, never even committed a violent act. Judge Guzman was having none of it:

When you provide the tools, you are setting in motion a series of events, and you can’t just play ostrich and stick your head in the sand and say, "That’s not my doing.”
Horace Boothroyd III's recent diary underscores years of instances where law enforcement officers solemnly concluded - and the press solemnly reported - that "the shooter acted alone."

Below the orange tangle, the story of David Lewisbey's career.

Over four years or so, David Lewisbey reportedly purchased hundreds of handguns and assault rifles at Indiana gun shows, weapons that he passed through a middleman-accomplice for sale to members of the Gangster Disciples street gang in Chicago and perhaps others. For a few of the guns - very few - there was a paper trail. The great bulk of them are in the wind.

Guns to Go. Sales at gun shows in Indiana require very little paperwork.

You flash an ID that says you're an Indiana resident. There may be an "instant background check." After that, you put your money on the table and buy hand guns, semi-automatic rifles, ammunition, whatever you need. No ban on assault weapons, no meaningful restrictions on ammunition that can be sold. Volume purchasers are welcome. If you're driving to or from a gun show, you can carry the weapons - unloaded, of course - without any kind of permit. (Indiana is a Must Issue state so a carry permit isn't much of a control.)

There's no registration of you or the guns you purchased, no waiting periods, none of those pesky forms and swearing-to in the Federal laws on buying from licensed dealers. Put the guns and ammo in your duffle, move on to the next seller's table or head for wherever.

Private sales are on a Don't Ask/Don't Tell Honor System, one gun owner to another, intended for transactions between family and friends. They can be accomplished with no paperwork at all unless the seller wants a receipt. (Which, in one of Lewisbey's purchases, he did!) And in at least one instance, Lewisbey apparently filled out an ATF form for a purchase.

The Guns of David Lewisbey.  The Chicago Tribune covered Lewisbey's trial. It focused on 48 hours in April 2012, when Lewisbey delivered nearly four dozen guns to a middleman with ties to the Gangster Disciples street gang.  For example:

-  A Glock 23 was used in a double shooting weeks after Lewisbey purchased it in 2012. Neither victim chose to cooperate with the police. It appeared that Lewisbey reported the gun stolen a few hours after the shooting (it was one of those few reported transactions!), so helpful Indiana police returned the gun to him.
-  The same weapon was recovered at a crime scene a year later. Outfitted with a laser sight, it was allegedly used by a gang member to take nine shots at rivals in a South Chicago neighborhood. The shooter was charged with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and being a habitual armed criminal.
-  Another of Lewisbey's guns turned up in a search of a reputed Gangster Disciple's home, a .40 caliber handgun being carried by a felon.
-  The police found another, a .40 caliber Glock, during a pat-down of two suspected gang members loitering outside a South Side Chicago elementary school.

The prosecution argued,

During one of the deadliest years in Chicago's history, [Lewisbey] was pumping numerous unregistered and untraceable firearms in the most violent neighborhoods in Chicago ... on the side streets and in the back alleys.
Indiana, whose official motto is "Crossroads of America," will be host to 55 gun shows during the rest of 2014.

Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) has described the "rivers of guns" that flood Illinois from states with lax gun laws. A study by the University of Chicago Crime Lab concluded that nearly 20 percent of the guns confiscated by Chicago police from 2008 to 2012 were purchased in Indiana.

There is money in this business of gunrunning. In just one set of sales - to the undercover cop that cemented the prosecution in this case - David Lewisbey reportedly cleared $20,000.

It's Time to Close the "Gun Show Loophole".  Virtually no paperwork is required to be kept or exchanged by sellers at gun shows. This gaping chasm in the law is not an accident. The NRA and its minions argue vociferously against registration of guns and owners. Against universal background checks. Against record-keeping that is ready accessible to law enforcement. Against studies that would disclose more precisely the extent of gun trafficking and smuggling. Against rules of the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to prevent straw purchases - buying a gun for someone else - from Federal dealers (in Abramski v. US, now awaiting decision before the US Supreme Court).

Centralized record keeping of guns and owners would have disclosed David Lewisbey's mass purchasing of guns and ammunition ultimately used to commit crimes of violence. The main argument against registration is that it is a slippery slope to banning guns, to seizing them from law-abiding citizens whose uses of firearms are entirely benign - hunting, target practice, collections of hobbyist/aficionados. That concern is overblown hooey.

There is no sound public policy reason not to do everything we can to account for guns, for instrumentalities that are acknowledged to be dangerous when used as designed.

How long will legislators willfully withhold the tools law enforcement needs to protect the public?



The Daily Kos Firearms Law and Policy group studies actions for reducing firearm deaths and injuries in a manner that is consistent with the current Supreme Court interpretation of the Second Amendment. If you would like to write about firearms law please send us a Kosmail.

To see our list of original and republished diaries, go to the Firearms Law and Policy diary list. Click on the ♥ or the word "Follow" next to our group name to add our posts to your stream, and use the link next to the heart to send a message to the group if you have a question or would like to join.

We have adopted Wee Mama's and akadjian's guidance on communicating.  But most important, be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle.

Originally posted to Firearms Law and Policy on Tue May 27, 2014 at 12:10 PM PDT.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA and VAGV - Veterans Against Gun Violence.

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Comment Preferences

  •  His defense: "Trust me, I'm a drug dealer" (6+ / 0-)

    Interesting story, TRP!  Apparently he tried to claim that he made his money as a pot dealer. Defendant denies selling guns to gangs: Trust me, I’m a drug dealer
    BY KIM JANSSEN Federal Courts Reporter for the The Chicago Sun-Times on September 17, 2013

    Cellphone records from a weekend in April 2012 show Lewisbey making multiple trips back and forth between gun shows in Indiana and Chicago, where prosecutors say he and an accomplice made $38,000 selling more than 40 guns.

    But Lewisbey, who spent Monday afternoon and all day Tuesday on the stand, said he only bought guns “to enhance my personal collection” and as a favor to an old pal, because he knew how to get a good deal.

    “I can’t even remember all the guns I have,” he said.

    [my bold]

    This case shows how insanely easy it is for straw purchasers to pass as legal gun collectors.

    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

    by LilithGardener on Tue May 27, 2014 at 12:26:31 PM PDT

  •  Trib did a good job with that (4+ / 0-)

    I remember the piece well.  

    Schedule permitting, PROOF WILL BE PROVIDED ON HOW I AM BEING "CONSTANTLY CALLED OUT" AND "UNIVERSALLY RECOGNIZED" FOR BEING BAD. Moreover, the dossier on my activities during the Bush administration will have an appendix concluding that I am Wrong.

    by Inland on Tue May 27, 2014 at 12:28:51 PM PDT

  •  Are you trying to draw an analogy to (0+ / 0-)

    the recent killing in Santa Barbara? If so it doesn't work. Sates have  varying regulations about gun sales including how gun show sales are handled. California has the strictest gun laws in the US. ALL firearms sales, transfers (including private transactions and sales at gun shows) must go through a California licensed firearms dealer.

    •  No, Mr. T, no analogy. Rodger bought legally, ... (5+ / 0-)

      ... it was reported.

      I am not suggesting that the measures so criticized by the NRA and other gun rights advocates - the Provisions that Cannot be Considered in Legislation - will prevent all massacres, any more than improved programs for mental health treatment would have forestalled Eliot Rodger's actions.

      I am suggesting that doing nothing is no answer at all. Our legislators can do better than that. We should see that they do.

      2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

      by TRPChicago on Tue May 27, 2014 at 03:21:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The diary is about gunrunning (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sturunner, Kevskos

      Specifically it's about a straw purchaser who bought lots of guns at Indiana gun shows and through an accomplice supplied criminal gangs in Chicago, Illinois.

      By any chance did you mean to comment in a different diary?

      If you you read this diary you'll see it has nothing to do with California gun law.

      "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

      by LilithGardener on Tue May 27, 2014 at 03:25:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  What's needed is Federal regulation. (0+ / 0-)

      And despite the NRA/gun industry, and the gun-nuts who parrot their poison, the Second Amendment is irrelevant to the issue of private, individual gun possession.

      First, the purpose of the Amendment was to establish a National Defense, relying on well regulated militia trusted NOT to "take up arms" against the Constitution and laws.  A well regulated militia is not an individual.

      Second, AFTER the Amendment was ratified, the Congress enacted a lengthy series of Militia Acts -- which regulated the militia of the Second Amendment.

      That series of Militia Acts substantiates that the Amendment is not a bar to regulation.  That is, that it does not protect FROM regulation whatever is said to be "protected" by it.

      So if one wants to claim that the Second "protects" an individual, private right, then one is setting oneself up for an additional set of Federal regulations -- through the conduit of the Second Amendment.

      I'm all for stopping the lie that the Second protects an individual, private right.  But until that happens, I'm all for the additional Federal regulation of the private, individual right to own guns through the Second Amendment also.

      We'll see if gun-nuts are of sufficient IQ to get the fact that they should have been careful of what they wished for: they opposed a set of regulations; now they have to concern themselves with two sets of regulations.

      This is the country of those three great rights: freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, and the wisdom never to exercise either of them. -- Mark Twain.

      by JJustin on Tue May 27, 2014 at 06:21:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'd disagree (0+ / 0-)

        and side with the SC which has consistently opined that the  2nd amendment DOES extend the right to bear arms to the public (AKA private citizens).

        •  The debates of those who WROTE the Amendment (0+ / 0-)

          are as I detailed.

          Those debates are the legislative history in which we find the intents of those who WROTE the Amendment.

          That legislative history is legal authority.

          It is standard: if there is a question about the intent of a law, one "asks" those who WROTE the law.  Scalia ignores that standard because it would interfere with him making up the law as he wants it to be.

          Scalia is a fraud on the point.

          And as the Amendment is intended to esablish a national defense, relying on the PUBLIC institution militia, "people" does not refer to private citizens qua private citizens.  One was not a member of the militia simple because one fit eligibility criteria.  In order to serve in the militia, one must either go through the enlistment process, including swearing oath of loyalty, or be drafted -- exactly as with standing military.

          Militia duty was not a right; it was a duty; and if one was assigned to bear arms, it was a duty, not a right.

          The Amendment has nothing whatever to do with "individual" anything.  

          Further:

          Art. I., S. 8., C. 16.  The Congress shall have Power To provide for . . . ARMING . . . the Militia.

          The Congress alone armed the militia.

          This is the country of those three great rights: freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, and the wisdom never to exercise either of them. -- Mark Twain.

          by JJustin on Tue May 27, 2014 at 10:33:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Dude it isn't just Scalia (0+ / 0-)

            it's every SC since the creation of the document.

            •  No, it is not "every SC since the creation of the (0+ / 0-)

              document".

              You've either NOT READ all those prior decisions (you've certainly not read Presser), of which there are not that many, or you want those decisions to be "the same" as Heller.  

              All such decisions prior to Heller held opposite Heller on the point.  (Clue: the further one gets from the actual writing of the Second Amendment, the easier it is to "mistake" -- in the Heller case deliberately -- its actual intent.)

              Gun-nuts like to describe Miller as "controversial" -- because it does not hold as they want it to.  In fact it is not at all controversial.

              Miller was arrested for and convicted of possessing a sawed-off shotgun, which was illegal.  His claim at the SC was that possession of the sawed-off shotgun was protected by the Second Amendment.

              The SC reviewed the legal history/authority -- constitutional provisions, militia acts -- and held:

              No.  The sawed off shotgun is not a militia weapon, therefore possession of it is not protected by the Second Amendment.

              That decision is based upon detailed stipulations, in Militia Acts, of authorized militia weaponry.  That weaponry did not (and does not) include the sawed-off shotgun.

              The authorization of weaponry proper for militia use -- the arming of the militia -- has always been determined by the gov't; and after establishment of separation powers, by the state legislature; and then by the Federal Congress.  Note the Federal timeline:

              June 21, 1788: Ratification of Constitution completed.

              In the Constitution are three Militia Clauses, the second of which, Art. I., S. 8., C. 16, stipulates, as relevant, that --

              The Congress shall have Power To provide for . . . ARMING . . . the Militia.
              Neither the Executive, nor the SC, determine the arming of the militia.

              March 4, 1789: First scheduled meeting of Federal Congress.

              April 6, 1789: Congress achieves quorum.

              May 4, 1789: Madison motion to debate subject of Amendments on May 25 agreed to.

              May 25, 1789: Madison motion to postpone consideration of Amendments until June 8 agreed to.

              June 8, 1789: Madison resolution for bill of rights submitted for debate.  Various procedural motions, until --

              August 13, 1789: Debate of Amendments begins.

              September 25, 1789: Proposed bill of rights of twelve proposed amendments submitted to the states for consideration and or ratification.  The first two are rejected, making the third the First and the fourth the Second.

              December 15, 1791: Ratification of Bill of Rights completed.

              May 2, 1792: First Militia Act enacted:

              Chap. XXVIII.--An Act to provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the laws of the Union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions.

              May 8, 1792: Second Militia Act enacted:

              Chap. XXXIII.--An Act more effectually to provide for the National Defence by establishing an Uniform Militia throughout the United States.

              Thus we know that (1) the purpose of the Second Amendment is National Defense, (2) the subject of the Amendment is well regulated militia -- that which is regulated, and (3) that the Amendment does not bar regulation of that which the Amendment protects.

              This is the country of those three great rights: freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, and the wisdom never to exercise either of them. -- Mark Twain.

              by JJustin on Wed May 28, 2014 at 09:28:49 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  ^^^ This is a mistaken ahistorical idea. (0+ / 0-)

          Welcome to the Firearms Law and Policy group. Our group bog is here.

          You might find this article interesting, The Meaning of the Second Amendment. It includes excerpts and links to the Annotated Constitution from the Congressional Research Service (non-partisan and available through the Library of Congress), and to the SCOTUS Heller and McDonald decisions. IMO, there is no substitute for reading both the majority and minority opinions to understand the recent historical context of collective rights theory giving way to individual rights theory. We should not forget that both decisions were narrow, 5-4 decisions. There are additional resources in our group blogroll.

          "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

          by LilithGardener on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:45:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  SCOTUS hasn't ruled on carry issues. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LilithGardener

          (I assume, Mr. T, that's what you mean by "right to bear arms to the public.")

          The Heller and McDonald cases go only an individual's right to have an operable handgun in her or his home for self-defense. While gun rights advocates point to some general language in J. Scalia's majority opinion in Heller, SCOTUS explicitly did not rule on carry as protected by the Second Amendment.

          To the contrary. The Court has had two or three opportunities this term to accept cases on public carry. It has declined to take them up, thereby leaving lower courts' decisions upholding limits on public carry in effect.

          2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

          by TRPChicago on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:44:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  No what I am referring to (0+ / 0-)

            is the contention by JJustin that "the Second Amendment is irrelevant to the issue of private, individual gun possession."
            Presser, Miller, Heller, McDonald, all say otherwise. My point was that the SC has routinely and constantly upheld the language of the 2nd amendment as an individual right. It isn't some recent "Scalia lie" or Roberts court "extremist" convolution.

            •  By using "bear", I thought you meant "carry"... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              LilithGardener

              ... since that is the tidy argument made by gun righters - to distinguish "keep" (as in one's home) from "bear" as in carry around.

              2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

              by TRPChicago on Wed May 28, 2014 at 10:19:45 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Things get a little dicer after that of course (0+ / 0-)

                but the right to carry has won the day recently. I actually have a CC Permit. But only rarely carry.

                •  I disagree. The last case to come up, for example, (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  LilithGardener

                  ... was Drake v. Jerejian, a challenge to New Jersey's strict "May Issue" law. The Court declined to take the case for review.

                  While nothing can be taken as gospel from not accepting a case on appeal, SCOTUS has ducked several opportunities to extend Second Amendment rights beyond its Heller decision.

                  Yes, some state cases and a few Federal courts have upheld carry - and SCOTUS may well, eventually, also do it given the right kind of case - but it hasn't yet.

                  2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

                  by TRPChicago on Wed May 28, 2014 at 01:40:46 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  We'll see (0+ / 0-)

                    but the precedent for that ruling is set.

                    •  Sorry to be a pest on this, but no, no precedent (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      LilithGardener

                      ... has been set, not by SCOTUS, and it's the precedent setter in this area. The Drake case gave the Court a near perfect opportunity to establish a right to carry on Second Amendment grounds ... and it didn't.

                      If anything, the Court has been very deferential over a six year period to a wide variety of state and Federal interpretations of gun laws. I think this, following the caveats in J. Scalia's opinion in Heller, has been very deliberate.

                      2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

                      by TRPChicago on Wed May 28, 2014 at 02:16:03 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I agree (0+ / 0-)

                        they have the opportunity to establish that the 2nd IS or IS NOT a right to carry and they have instead established that states' can regulate that. And look at the Illinois ban that was struck down. Maybe precedent is too strong, but it's close.

                        •  Yes, the Moore case in Illinois was a solid 2A ... (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          LilithGardener

                          ... win for concealed carry against the last state to virtually ban carry.

                          And although Scalia has professed not to hold Judge Posner (who wrote the Moore opinion) in high regard, Posner is respected and so is the 7th Circuit. (I thought this opinion of his was shallow, but I am a bit biased.)

                          We'll see. The Ninth Circuit case from CA should be next. When, that is, or even IF that Court can get off the pot, decide the en banc request for the full Court to hear the case and move it along.

                          2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

                          by TRPChicago on Wed May 28, 2014 at 02:42:19 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

      •  Discourse - Firearms Law and Policy group diaries (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TRPChicago

        Welcome to the group discussion, JJustin and Mister T. Kos has described group diaries as a metaphorical living room where the author is hosting a party, and readers are guests.

        The FLAP group was founded last fall to focus study of gun law and policy and facilitate discussion by Kossacks across the whole spectrum of views, including those who think Heller was too narrow, and those who think the 2A should be repealed. We have adopted Wee Mama's and akadjian's guidance on communicating. We encourage guests to explain why they believe what they believe and to link to references they rely upon to form their opinions.

        "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

        by LilithGardener on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:03:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Be careful what you wish for. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mister T

          In the past, discourse in Daily Kos gun diaries has been plagued with insults, ad hominems, personal attacks, and various forms of disruptive commenting. Some people react but most readers are turned off from the discussion when that happens.

          There is an excellent example in the comment above.

          We'll see if gun-nuts are of sufficient IQ to get the fact that they should have been careful of what they wished for: they opposed a set of regulations; now they have to concern themselves with two sets of regulations.
          There is a seed of a very interesting idea there, but many will not read it because the poster buried it behind gratuitous vitriol. When an opening phrase is wasted that way, most readers will skip the rest of that paragraph. Trouble makers may seize on this flame bait as an invitation to fight.

          When I read things like this I wonder why the author buried the lede. It's the fastest way to convince readers that there is little substance behind the bluster.

          "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

          by LilithGardener on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:19:01 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Black man, 23 years old, 16 years in prison (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Kevskos

    Glock still gets their money.  Prosecutors get feathers in their cap.  Activists get a convenient bad guy to parade around for whatever their cause may be.  Meanwhile, the dying continues.

    Makes me want to puke.

    •  And your solution is? n/t (0+ / 0-)

      This is the country of those three great rights: freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, and the wisdom never to exercise either of them. -- Mark Twain.

      by JJustin on Tue May 27, 2014 at 06:22:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Probation and restitution (0+ / 0-)

        And if you want to do something about the guns, well get off your butt and go after Glock.

        •  Perhaps you should see my more substantial (0+ / 0-)

          comments to see what I'm doing about the gun issue.

          We need to go after and demolish with fact -- substantiated -- the false underpinnings of the NRA/gun industry's Second Amendment lie.

          That is the most direct root to eliminating the central obstacle to increased gun control.

          This is the country of those three great rights: freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, and the wisdom never to exercise either of them. -- Mark Twain.

          by JJustin on Tue May 27, 2014 at 06:28:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sounds like a lot of jawboning to me (0+ / 0-)

            And in the mean time, young Black men pay the price.

            So how about this?  Pick a restriction friendly state legislature and push for OECD quality gun control.  Sacramento is ripe.  We're talking mandatory, periodic mental health examinations and at-home and neighborhood compliance visits.  Requiring new gun buyers to go through a years long process of establishing their fitness to own a shotgun, followed by even more years establishing fitness to own a rifle or handgun.  We're talking about requiring gun owners to minimally keep inventory as well as FFLs.  We're talking about lowering the threshold of mental health defect required to disqualify prospective buyers and confiscate currently held weapons.  

            You know, actually doing something.

            •  One will then contend with the unrefuted lie, (0+ / 0-)

              and the effort to forge compromises with that lie.

              What's needed is to eliminate the lie instead of capitulating to and compromising with it.

              This is the country of those three great rights: freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, and the wisdom never to exercise either of them. -- Mark Twain.

              by JJustin on Tue May 27, 2014 at 10:39:51 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Contend away (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                TRPChicago, LilithGardener

                But back to actually doing something.  Is there any reason why we just don't push for real gun control where we own the ground?

                •  I think it is abundantly safe for Democrats to (0+ / 0-)

                  run on a comprehensive gun control platform: not only do 90-plus per cent want universal background checks, and other increased gun control measures, but 84 per cent of Republicans want universal background checks.

                  This is the country of those three great rights: freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, and the wisdom never to exercise either of them. -- Mark Twain.

                  by JJustin on Thu May 29, 2014 at 09:30:24 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  So again, what's taking so long (0+ / 0-)

                    Not in DC.  Not in Wyoming.  In Sacramento, in Boston, and Honolulu?  

                    The same goes for a huge number of issues near and dear to the progressive heart.  Single payer healthcare comes to mind. Where we have overwhelming dominance on the ground at the state and municipal level, where we have no political or legal inhibitions whatsoever, there has been remarkably little progress.  

  •  If you want... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LilithGardener

    a gun you can get a gun.  You don't have to go to a gun show.  Just check the local ads on your computer.  Plenty of people will sell you a gun without a background check.

    We need to stop using the phrase "gun show loophole".  It sounds like an accounting shenanigan.  We should say "stop illegal gun running".   And for those elected officials who don't support universal background checks, we should call them "supporters of criminal gun runners".

    Stupid...it's the new smart for right wingers.

    by StevenD56 on Tue May 27, 2014 at 06:24:03 PM PDT

    •  I'll go with summary phrases that work. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      StevenD56, LilithGardener

      But ... I won't yield on fixing the gun show loopholes, or maintaining the ATF's rules against straw purchases, or working on legislation for more comprehensive solutions.

      The gun rights advocates argue - with some validity - that this cure and that provision don't address all the troubles with guns.

      We need to do what works for enough cases, without expecting a universal fix for everything.

      2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

      by TRPChicago on Tue May 27, 2014 at 06:50:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My point... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TRPChicago, LilithGardener

        is the phrase gun show loophole does not convey what needs fixing.  What needs fixing is easy access to firearms by criminals.  Universal background checks are an essential first step.

        We need to do what works for enough cases, without expecting a universal fix for everything.
        I agree.  Gun rights advocates arguments always seem to be some variant of "criminals don't obey the law, so more laws are pointless".  I don't think many of them understand that they argue for anarchy.

        Stupid...it's the new smart for right wingers.

        by StevenD56 on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:14:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agreed (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          StevenD56

          Universal background checks are important, but there are also other problems with how NCIS is administered and how different states manage state level background checks.

          At the center is the private sales exemption, aka the private sales loophole. Wasn't it meant to enable family and close friends to transfer guns in the myriad ways that hunters, collectors, and sport shooters do with people they know well.

          A few examples:
          Trading guns between legal gun owners.
          Heirloom gun gift from a family member to a minor child.
          Sharing or borrowing rifles from a friend to go hunting.
          Someone other than the owner, (wife or young adult) retrieving a repaired gun from the gunsmith.

          I'm sure their are others. I wonder if we could tempt you to write a diary about the origin and purpose of the private sales exemption. Our readers who never owned a gun might benefit from a tutorial on the purpose of that exemption.

          "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

          by LilithGardener on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:49:43 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  What is the.. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            LilithGardener

            point of a private sales exemption?  It seems to me it only serves criminal interest.  Avoiding minor inconvenience between friends, family members, hunting buddies etc, seems like a trivial benefit compared to the easy criminal access to guns it facilitates.

            Stupid...it's the new smart for right wingers.

            by StevenD56 on Wed May 28, 2014 at 06:16:40 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm not up on why the law was written that way (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              StevenD56

              so I was just making an educated guess.

              You've made a persuasive argument, Steve. Your whole line of thinking here has a lot of potential to focus Dems toward a practical and achievable legislative objective with a political message that is simple and does much of "the heavy lifting." And there is already abundant data to support the policy shift.

              "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

              by LilithGardener on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:10:17 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Interesting point (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      StevenD56

      and one that's worth fleshing out a bit, maybe even as a diary.

      We need to stop using the phrase "gun show loophole".
      I think it's necessary because gun transfers at gun shows are a distinct subset of the problem, and it can be dealt with at the state and local level. As I see it, the problem goes beyond background checks and deals with accountability for business record keeping and sales tax.

      IOW closing the gun show loophole involves holding accountable those who profit form the transactions. It involves not just FFLs and private sellers, but holding the venue owners and the gun show operators accountable for the inventory of commercial goods that change hands at each event they sponsor.

      After a statewide investigation detailed many problems at gun shows. New York developed new "best practices" with the gun show industry. Much of this requires no changes in law. It's practice level requirements, no different that what's expected of concert operators and other kinds of events to reduce criminal activity on their premises.

      http://www.ag.ny.gov/...

      The Attorney General's Office and the gun show operators worked together to develop the procedures which balance the rights of the sportsmen and gun collectors with the need to protect the public from the sale of guns to people who cannot pass a background check, also known as a "National Instant Criminal Background Check System" or "NICS.” These two gun show operators signed an agreement which requires them to do the following:

      •    Post conspicuous signs throughout the shows, give written notice to all dealers and lay out in their on-line promotional materials the following: "New York State law requires that a National Instant Criminal Background Check must be completed prior to all firearm sales or transfers, including sales or transfers of rifles or shotguns. The sale or transfer of a firearm, rifle or shotgun at a Gun Show without first conducting a Background Check is a crime. It is also a crime to offer or agree to sell a firearm, rifle or shotgun at a Gun Show and then transfer it at another location for the purpose of avoiding a National Instant Criminal Background Check."
      •    Require that all guns brought into the gun show by private sellers are tagged so that, upon exiting, the operator can determine if the guns were sold and an NICS was performed.
      •    Inform all gun show staff of the requirements of posting signs and conducting NICS.
      •    Provide access to a dealer who is authorized to conduct a NICS at cost.
      •    Limit the number of access doors at the show so that sellers and buyers have to enter and exit through an area where the NICS procedures can be monitored.
      •    Use reasonable means to prevent illegal gun sales outside of the building, including the parking lot.
      •    Alert local law enforcement that a show will be held in their area, and request periodic patrols in the parking lots to deter illegal sales.
      •    Call local law enforcement if illegal sales are observed or suspected.

      "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

      by LilithGardener on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:38:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Gun shows reflect 2% of the U.S. gun market (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LilithGardener, StevenD56

        Private sales, however, represent 40%.

        Private gun sale regulation is the big fat elephant in this room. (Yet both Canada and Mexico have made formal complaints about gun shows.)

        re: GUN SHOW CULTURE:
        Dr. Garen Wintemute, using UC Davis students, did a photo-heavy study of 278 gun shows in 19 states,"Inside Gun Shows: What Goes on When Everybody Thinks Nobody’s Watching." It's a good read--an eye-opening look at straw purchaser snapshots, and the misogynist culture which once fostered Timothy McVeigh.

        _______________________________________________________________________________________ It seems to me that we humans take turns being dummies.

        by reasonablegunsplz on Wed May 28, 2014 at 10:46:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I just read... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LilithGardener

        the executive summary of "Inside Gun Shows" that reasonablegunzplz linked to in his reply to your comment. They conclude:

        The best-known public policy initiative is the proposal that all private party sales at gun shows be subject to the same background check and record-keeping requirements that exist for sales by licensed retailers. The evidence suggests that there are two real difficulties with closing the gun show loophole, as this initiative is named, if no other action is taken. Regulating private party sales just at gun shows will not end the problems associated with these anonymous and undocumented transactions. Most of them occur elsewhere already, and others would likely be displaced by restrictions that applied to gun shows only. Second, regulating private party sales will not render gun shows unimportant as sources of trafficked crime guns; the best evidence is that most of those guns are sold by licensed retailers.

        It would be preferable to regulate private party gun sales generally. This broader approach would more effectively prevent prohibited persons from acquiring guns, thereby preventing violent crime. It would also help solve crimes after they are committed. There are costs, but these are mainly due to the inconvenience created by the paperwork and background check.

        New York may be different, but I perceive it is very easy to buy a gun no matter your criminal history in Nevada and much of the country without going to a gun show.

        I think UBC are the first step, because it makes it a crime for the seller to sell to a prohibited person.  It will give a lot of people pause, knowing that selling a gun sans background check will land you in prison.

        Stupid...it's the new smart for right wingers.

        by StevenD56 on Wed May 28, 2014 at 06:00:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Now I see what you mean (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          StevenD56

          The key step is placing responsibility on the seller.

          I think UBC are the first step, because it makes it a crime for the seller to sell to a prohibited person.  It will give a lot of people pause, knowing that selling a gun sans background check will land you in prison.
          And yes, New York is different than much of the country because a) you can't buy a handgun anywhere unless you have applied for a permit to possess in your home or business.

          It includes a full background check that is broader than NICS, voluntary disclosure of all arrests, voluntary disclosure of mental health history, references attesting to good moral character, passport photos and fingerprinting. If approved it is limited to your primary residence. After you get the permit you show that to the FFL and whichever handgun you buy is then listed on your permit.

          A CCW permit is a totally separate application that includes convincing a county judge that you have "good cause," some reason above and beyond the general public.

          "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

          by LilithGardener on Wed May 28, 2014 at 06:55:31 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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