Discover some truths about the Gun Show Loophole....
Gun Show Truths: Fact Sheet no. 1 PDF (see below)
New York Times Editorial on the Gun Show Loophole
Q & A
More Statistics and Studies
“Right now, convicted felons and spouse abusers may purchase weapons at gun shows because the law does not require gun show background checks. Gun dealers have rights. But they also have responsibilities. And making sure that criminals - or terrorists - aren’t able to purchase guns is one of them.”
-- Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman, Oct. 31, 2003 ... Click here to read more quotes on closing the Gun Show Loophole
Quick Stats: Gun Shows are the SECOND leading source of crime guns in the United States: statistics pulled from : "Following the Gun: Enforcing Federal Laws Against Firearms Traffickers," Department of the Treasury, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms (June 2000)
1 "Felons were associated with selling or purchasing firearms in 46% of the gun show investigations.Firearms that were illegally diverted at or through gun shows were recovered in subsequent crimes including homicide and robbery, in more than a third of the gun show investigations." (p. 17)
2 "The access to anonymous sales and large numbers of secondhand firearms makes gun shows attractive to criminals." (p. 17)
3 "Gun shows were a major trafficking channel, involving the second highest number of trafficked guns per investigation." (p. xi)
Why was the bill to CLOSE the gun show loophole voted down on the Virginia senate floor this year?
The bill was voted down on the floor of the Virginia Senate by senators who support the NRA/gun lobby: Senator Cuccinnelli (We've seen booths set up to raise money for him IN gun shows) and Senator John Edwards (legislator of Va Tech's district and Roanoke, a particular disgrace given the largest mass shooting in American history took place in his district). Some legislators, like Virginia Senator Edwards, support voluntary, not mandatory background checks at gun shows.
What is a "voluntary" background check? What does that mean?
"Voluntary" background checks means the private gunshow seller decides HIMSELF if he thinks the gun purchaser looks like a felon! What does a felon look like?!! Is he tall or short? Brown hair or blond? THIS IS RIDICULOUS! A quick, minutes-long computer background check sorts out in a flash if someone has a criminal record or has been determined by a judge as mentally ill and a threat to society. And then -- NO GUN! It's real simple, but could save lives. (This background check system has already stopped over a million and a half dangerous sales to criminals/dangerous individuals across America since it was put in place in 1994 so this law -- the Brady Law -- WORKS.)
The only good way to prevent guns from being sold to the wrong person at gun shows (where in some gun shows, tens of thousands people go through a gun show in a weekend) -- is to have MANDATORY background checks. These mandatory background checks are already done by gun stores across the nation -- they take a matter of minutes! Private sellers should just be required to do the same background checks at gun shows. Because it could save American lives.
The bill we are fighting for is for MANDATORY BACKGROUND CHECKS on all guns purchases (including assault weapons) at gun shows.
Taking a Stand: Reducing Gun Violence in our Communities. International Association of Chiefs of Police states:"Requiring that all gun sales take place through Federal Firearms License (FFL) holders with mandatory background checks." (p. 6)
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, "Following the Gun," June 2000: The ATF explains how gun shows are the second-largest source of illegal guns
Government Accountability Office, "Gun Control and Terrorism," 2005 : The GAO shows how known terrorists have exploited America's loose gun laws
Conde Nast Portfolio, "Arming the Drug Wars": Drug gangs in Mexico are able to exploit America's soft gun laws
Penn, Schoen & Berland survey: Most gun owners support expanding background checks
The Virginia Tech Panel calls for closing background check loopholes
A professor explains how tough gun laws prevent illegal purchases at gun shows
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for Gun Policy and Research calls for closing the gun show loophole
Mayors Against Illegal Guns calls for closing the gun show loophole
The American Hunters & Shooters Association calls for closing the gun show loophole
A leading criminologist professor calls for expanding background checks.
Info@Campaigntoclosethegunshowloophole.org Photo credit: Mellissa Frangias