by Doug Book, staff writer
Barack Obama’s Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) has sent an open letter to all Federal Firearms License (FFL) holders/licensed gun dealers in the United States, recommending they “…enhance public safety and assist law enforcement by encouraging and facilitating transfers of firearms between private individuals through their business.” In short, FFL holders are being told to perform background checks and keep records of private gun sales between American citizens, EVEN THOUGH federal law may NOT require that they do so! (1)
According to current federal law, gun sales between private individuals must be handled by FFL holders ONLY if the private parties are residents of different states. Residents of the same state may conclude the sale of a firearm without submitting to a background check, having the sale recorded or paying a fee to a FFL holder/licensed gun store. Yet in the ATF’s January 16th letter to gun dealers, this vitally important distinction in federal law is ignored.
Why would the ATF suddenly “suggest” to gun dealers that they unnecessarily intrude themselves into private sales not currently controlled by federal law?
Six of the 23 executive actions recommended by Obama to curb gun violence involve the “sharing” of background check information throughout the executive branch bureaucracy. If gun dealers in the 50 states begin making it known to customers now that private sales must be handled through their stores—regardless of the true language of the law—it is hoped by gun grabbers that when the law really DOES change and Americans lose the right of private sales, no one will notice and no one will complain! The American public will be used to having their transactions recorded by the federal government! (2)
It is an underhanded tactic which FFL holders will be FORCED to impose upon the American people. After all, gun store owners depend for their very existence upon the good will of the ATF–the government organization which can revoke the gun dealer’s Federal Firearms License, effectively putting him out of business should he not toe the ATF line. So when the ATF “recommends” a FFL holder misrepresent federal law to a would-be private seller, he will do so or risk losing his investment and his livelihood.
How great a danger to the 2nd Amendment rights of the American people does this contempt for existing federal law represent? Gun Owners of America has sent an alert to its members, warning that “increasingly ATF is going into gun dealers and Xeroxing all of the 4473’s…” Each of these forms represents a gun sale. It is ILLEGAL for the ATF to copy them or make records of them except in a criminal investigation. For making a record of these forms is the equivalent of beginning a planned, federal registration of gun owners!
Clearly the government intends to record every gun sale it possibly can, regardless of the law. For recorded sales mean information as to who owns a weapon and where it can be confiscated when the time comes!
Make no mistake: Barack Obama is coming after the guns of the American people. We will stop him by any means necessary.