When the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) first requested authority to require gun dealers in four southwest border states to report sales of more than one semi-automatic, detachable magazine-fed rifle (presented as “assault weapons,” since the accurate description is insufficiently “scary”) to the same purchaser within five days, the request was carefully framed so that it could be presented as “reasonable.” It would only be those four states, it was only certain types of rifles (which just happened to be the most popular centerfire rifles in the country), and the purchases would still be legal–“merely” monitored (and BATFE has had little to say about the implications of that “monitoring”).
Apparently having decided that even these attempts to appear “reasonable” would be enough to silence those of us who find this unconstitutional power grab unforgivably offensive, Attorney General Eric Holder’s Department of “Justice” used guns that they had sent to Mexico as “evidence” to justify the new infringement.
Do not believe for a minute, though, that this sales reporting requirement (gun registration, in other words) is the intended end point. In fact, as long ago as August, 2011, BATFE was laying the groundwork for expanding the requirement beyond those four states, as reported in a KRGV.com story that is no longer available online:
Special Agent in Charge of the BATFE Dallas Field Division Robert] Champion says the ATF is now seeing a change in the way the cartel operates. Instead of buying weapons locally they’re getting them from all over the country and using the drug routes in reverse to get them back to Mexico.
BATFE expanded on that foundation last May, as National Gun Rights Examiner Dan noted. Actually, BATFE had hoped for more than just those four border states from the very beginning. There is more to this than geography, though. Recently, we discussed a Violence Policy Center “study” claiming that the number of shooting deaths in Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia now exceeds the number of traffic deaths.
That is interesting, because Maryland and D.C. have extremely oppressive gun laws, and Virginia at that time still had what the gun ban groups present as an extremely potent anti-trafficking law, the Constitutional rights rationing known as “one handgun per month.” In other words, multiple handgun sales were not simply required to be reported, they were illegal.
Multiple handgun sales are already reported, in every state (this is a federal requirement), but anti-gun groups fought the repeal of Virginia’s multiple handgun sale ban with abject, sky is falling, blood in the streets hysteria.
If one argues that merely reporting multiple handgun sales is not enough to interdict trafficking, and that what is needed is a multiple handgun sale ban, how can one argue that a multiple rifle sale reporting requirement will be enough to stop the trafficking?
The gun ban groups, and their ideological allies in both the mass media and the government, will not try to make that argument. They are simply waiting for the right time to say that the reporting requirement was a “good first step,” but more is needed.
- ‘Suspect Person’: Another reason to fight mulitple rifle reporting requirement
- Long gun registration: Today the border states, tomorrow everywhere?
- ‘Conspiracy theory’ goes mainstream–‘Gunwalker’ was for ‘gun control’
- ATF border state multiple sales report analysis a prelude to national expansion
- Reporting Requirement For Semi-Auto Rifles Originally Intended For More States