A bill is floating around the capital, The Gun Records Restoration and Preservation Act, that seeks to allow the ATF to track all guns in this country and basically setup a national gun registry. Of course they are wrapping it in the guise of “Gun Safety” but that has been the common term for gun regulation for years. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL); Bob Menendez(D-NJ); and Congresswoman Barbara Lee(D-CA) are seeking to change the rules about how the ATF and FBI can collect data about gun purchases and gun ownership.
As of right now the FBI is required by law to destroy all background check info on sales that were successful in this country. If you pass the NICS background check (form 4473) they must toss your info in the trash and no records are kept about your purchase. This bill would remove that requirement and allow the government to store that info in a registry.
If enacted, the bill also allow the ATF to more easily keep records of your 4473 forms and all firearms info in them. Currently the ATF requires dealers to keep these records for inspection if the ATF asks for them. This would transfer ALL sales data to the ATF for their storage. It would also end the prohibitions of the ATF to share that info with cities, states, researchers, LITIGANTS and members of the public. Notice they specified litigants. Members of the public should have covered that but they want to be sure somehow lawyers would be excluded as ‘officers of the court’. The dirty little secret is that the ATF is ALREADY recording your purchases but in a way that is very cumbersome. More on that later.
It would also require all gun dealers to disclose their full inventory to the ATF. This sounds like a paperwork nightmare and I’m sure was intended to make FFL dealer’s lives hell. The claim is that guns go missing at dealers and without current inventory data they cannot track these guns or dealers who are not following the law. As far as the dealers go there are already laws that make records keeping mandatory and these records would be available to ATF and FBI at any time.
This bill goes on to allow the public reporting of all multiple handgun purchases. If you buy 2 or more guns at one time they want this information reported to the US Attorney General’s office and made public for some reason. A government that publicly shames its citizens for exercising a constitutional right seems a little over the top. They would not report you if you went to more than one church or bought more than one book. Yet somehow there is a notion that guns are different and we must do everything we can to stop them. I always use this simple test, If the restriction would not pass muster against any other right it will not pass muster against this right.
The bill also mentions the need to “allow researchers to study gun violence and its impact on communities across the country”. There is a great math joke (yes they have those) that states, “There are three kinds of lies. Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics”. With a huge amount of data it is not a far fetched notion that it would be used to sculpt a narrative that was predetermined. This has been common practice for some time now and one would not be overly cynical to expect the same here. If they thought the data could not be used to confirm their positions they would not be fighting for it. If it does not, they will simply bury it like that have in the past.
There are quite a few lawmakers who have signed onto the act so far. The supports are the typical cast of characters. Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ); Richard Blumenthal (D-CT); Ed Markey (D-MA); Kamala Harris (D-CA); Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY); and Chris Murphy (D-CT) all signed on in support of this bill.
If this sounds like something you are not in favor of the next step would be to contact your lawmakers and let them know how you feel.
Click here to find their contact info
For more info about this bill and read it for yourself please click here