2021 Federal Gun Control Part 1: H.R. 8 (Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2021)

True to their word, the Harris-Biden [sic] administration and the Democrat controlled House of Representatives and Senate have begun ramming through their draconian gun control agenda. H.R. 8 is just the first of three announced so far. It was passed out of the House with no hearings and only cursory debate allowed. It hit the House floor at 12:24 pm and was passed at 3:45 pm.

H.R. 8 is titled the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2021, but would more accurately be called the Universal Background Check and National Firearm & Firearm Owner Registry Act. The “bipartisan” part of the name implies that this is something that both sides of the isle strongly support. In fact, the name has nothing to do with the support. Only eight RINO (Republican In Name Only) members of the House voted for it, each with a history of voting for gun control legislation. 

But that’s not all that is wrong with this bill. 

The promoters of the bill falsely claim that this will eliminate the so-called “gun show” and “internet sales” loopholes. But then the truth has never been part of the gun control movement. Firearm dealers’ sales at gun shows have always had to follow the same paperwork and background check requirements they do in their retail establishment. The other claim is that internet firearm sales without background checks are rampant, something their own research and purchase attempts proved was false a few years ago when nobody would sell them a firearm without going through a dealer. 

What is in play is the person-to-person transaction of selling a firearm. Many people do sell firearms to others in states where it is legal, and the vast, Vast, VAST majority of these sales are done conscientiously for the simple reason the sellers don’t want to have firearms end up in the wrong hands. 

The gun control extremists sell this as keeping guns out of criminals’ hands. By forcing the transaction to be done through an FFL (Federal Firearm Licensee) who is required to run a background check on the buyer, it will keep guns out of criminals’ hands. There are just a few things wrong with this story. 

The most obvious is that criminals don’t get their guns through firearm retails. The same applies to firearms transferred through firearm retailers. Criminals mainly obtain their guns through underground sources (stolen), theft or straw purchases by friends and family members. As such, the criminal acquisition of guns is unaffected by universal background checks. 

The other category of illegal firearm usage gun control extremists like to bring up is mass shootings. But even a cursory look at some of the most horrific mass casualty events shows the firearms used were purchased legally, through licensed firearms retailers, with successful background checks. Using these tragic events as an excuse for universal background checks knowing they would never have stopped them is not only insulting, it is sickening. 

The author of the bill also put out the unsubstantiated claim that: “This bill has bipartisan support from 90 percent of the American peopled [sic] and it’s long past time to get it enacted into law.” Given the extremely vocal and widespread opposition from the firearm and Second Amendment communities, this claim is nothing more than a lie to try to convince people they should be supporting what the majority of the country supports. 

Even with all the fatal flaws of logic and fact built into H.R. 8, the worst is the section that claims it does not create a national firearms registry. 

“(c) Rules Of Interpretation.—Nothing in this Act, or any amendment made by this Act, shall be construed to—
(1) authorize the establishment, directly or indirectly, of a national firearms registry; or”

This fails in two ways. The first is the background check itself. Even in states where the firearm information is not transmitted to the state or federal government, the purchaser’s information is. This in of itself creates a record of all persons who purchase a firearm. Hence, a registry of firearm owners. 

Yes, I know. The federal government has laws in place that say they cannot retain that information after a certain time frame. I’m not sure anyone actually believes this is true. 

The second is the firearm information. Full firearm registration has always been a goal of the gun control extremists, but just coming out and implementing it all at once like what is outlined in H.R. 127 would receive too much pushback. Universal background checks are the answer to this problem. 

By forcing all person-to-person sales through a firearm retailer, a record is created in the FFL’s books and on a federal form 4473, the Firearms Transaction Record. In some states like California, the information is also loaded into a state database by the FFL. In most other states, the record remains with the FFL. But does it? 

For years FFL’s have been complaining about the ATF (Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) scanning, copying or photographing all their acquisition and disposition bound books AND 4473s. This scooping up of information hasn’t been in response to a procedural investigation of the FFL or a criminal investigation of the purchasers as directed by law, it’s been to collect information. The latest redesign of the 4473 putting the firearm and purchaser information on the same page has been attributed to making this data collection more efficient. 

Where does this information go? That’s the million-dollar question. But it’s a fair bet that if the information is being collected, it’s being compiled and stored. 

And what’s so wrong with a national firearms registry? Aside from it is currently illegal under federal law – although I expect we’ll see that change over the next two years – the ONLY purpose of a firearms registry is to enable a confiscation of these firearms later on. If the historical accounts of tyrannical foreign governments requiring registration of firearms then confiscating them later doesn’t do it for you, simply look at examples in our own country. 

In the 1960’s New York City began registering long guns. Naturally, they assured the list would never be used to take firearms away from law-abiding citizens. Yet beginning in 1991 when the city banned many of those long guns, they began confiscating them. The registration / confiscation cycle continues today as many registered firearms “capable” of accepting a so-called “high-capacity” magazine have been made illegal and are therefore, being confiscated. 

There are of course many more examples, but the results are the same. Registration always leads to confiscation. What you lawfully own today can be made illegal tomorrow by no action on your part. The whims of an ultra-left majority can be made into law and you become a criminal overnight when the firearm you own is declared too dangerous for civilian ownership. 

Or perhaps you are the problem. You are a member of a non-favored political party that is accused of being white supremacists and domestic terrorists. Simply by your association, you are put on the Domestic Terror Watch List, something that has already been proposed. 

In either situation, you’ve never done or even dreamed of doing anything illegal in your life but now that you and your firearm information are registered, your Second Amendment protected rights will be stripped away.

Universal background checks are a solution in search of a problem. They do not prevent crime, nor do they make anyone safer. They do however provide the mechanism for a full national firearm and firearm owner database, the purpose of which made abundantly clear when more and more firearms are made illegal and law-abiding firearm owners are turned into criminals. 

Bob

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