One of the main items that lawmakers are proposing to curb gun violence in this country following recent events is a national gun registry database. This proposed database is fairly simple in theory and to the ordinary citizen doesn’t cause any alarms to go off immediately. The database would simply create a registry of all firearms in the country and who is in possession of said firearms. This would, to hear the lawmakers tout the proposal, be a keystone of finally ending gun violence in this country.
In truth it would do nothing to curb violence. It would however, make it much easier for the government to exercise more control over a populace that has become complacent in their defense of liberty.
At first glance the process seems completely benign. Why would anyone refuse to tell the government that they are in possession of a weapon? Especially if the government says that by telling them what weapons you have you will be doing your part to save the lives of innocents.
There are many reasons that could serve as a justifiable answer to the question. The first being: it is not the government’s business what I have in my possession as long as it is legal to own that item. By going with this one tenet, then you have destroyed any reasoning by the government as to why they need a gun registry database.
But wait, there’s more. You see, already the government has a system in place to track the sale and dispersal of firearms in the country. It has been in use for decades and has served its purpose quite well. Those that are promoting the banning of firearms never quite go so far as to tell the general population that the system exists. And the common citizen that does not own a gun, has no need or want for a gun, and could care less what the government does about guns may not be aware of this system.
Each time a buyer purchases a firearm from a federally licensed retailer they are required to fill out the government form 4473 (commonly referred to in the industry as the yellow sheet) that details pertinent information about the purchase. Buyers are asked several questions to validate their ability to lawfully purchase the firearm, present legal photo identification, and also swear and affirm that the information is correct. The retailer then confirms the information is correctly filled out and transmits information to the government for an instant background check to confirm that the information is legally acceptable.
Once completed and approved the buyer is then allowed to take possession of the firearm. The sale is recorded in the logs of the federally licensed gun dealer for document archive purposes. What this does is complete a circle as to the status of the firearm from the time it is manufactured to the point that it becomes the property of the end user. This creates a tracking system for the government and law enforcement to use should they ever need to know exactly where the firearm is at a given time. Use of this was intended originally as a tool to aid in solving crimes. For example, if someone was murdered with a gun and the gun was recovered at the scene the authorities would be able to track down who owned the weapon. Armed with the make, model, and serial number of the weapon the authorities would begin piecing together a trail which would hopefully lead them to the criminal in question.
First they would go to the manufacturer. The manufacturer would direct them to the distributor. The distributor would direct them to the dealer. The dealer would direct them to the buyer. Finally, they would be able to visit the buyer to complete their investigation. So in effect there is already a national gun registry that allows the government to track the sale and dispersal of firearms throughout the country. Most recently this same process was used in determining the actual owners of firearms used both in the Colorado movie theater shooting and the Connecticut school shooting.
So why does the government need another gun database? The short answer would be that they don’t. But we need to really think this through as to why the administration and certain lawmakers are now pushing for a database.
A national gun database would do nothing to curb violence in this country. Proponents say that it would allow the government to further track the firearms that are the result of private sales and currently not tracked through the system. This would include sales between individuals, firearms bought as gifts, firearms passed down through the family, and the like. All of these transfers are perfectly legal and not subject to any sort of government oversight. That is why the optimum word of private is part of the description’s title.
If the government stated today that all guns currently in your possession had to be registered, they would get a response from law abiding citizens and no one else. To think that the criminal element in this country would register their illegal firearms is ludicrous. Also, those that are questionable as to their legal right to keep and bear arms would also not register their firearms. So what would this do to curb violence and save the children? Nothing, it would simply give the government a list of all legally owned guns in the country and exactly where they are at. The gain in the efforts to stop the bloodshed is zero.
So why would the government even bother? Well, let’s think for a minute as to why any government in history has valued a list of citizens that are armed. Ask yourself; is it easier to subjugate a people that are armed or disarmed? Why disarmed of course. And would it not be prudent if a government were to start confiscation of weapons that they first identify where those weapons are? Of course it would.
Criminals will always be criminals. I know this, you know this, and the government knows this as fact. We cannot change that behavior any more than we can change the rotation of the planet. Truth be told, the government is not concerned about the criminals. They will deal with them as they always have, for you see to the government a criminal is not something to be feared. An armed citizenry is another story. A criminal could care less what group is in power. Either way the criminal is going to survive. Citizens however view the government as it truly should be: an entity that is supposed to work for them.
While the average citizen will bear many hardships placed upon them by a government; even the strongest of backs eventually breaks. Perhaps this administration and those that follow its ideology know that this is true and see that the collective back of the citizenry is almost broken. Therefore in an effort to continue pushing their agenda forward they need to make sure of just where the core opposition may be based.
They will tell you that this is not the case. However, there is no reason whatsoever for this proposed database that says otherwise. The first step is always to identify the enemy. Currently in this country the enemy is the law abiding gun owner. The second step is of course to handicap or completely remove the enemy. So how will this be accomplished? Based on practices of previous totalitarian regimes it could go something like this. Bear in mind that this is complete speculation, but I have based it on history and common sense to come up with a what-if scenario.
John Smith is a law abiding citizen of the United States and law abiding gun owner. While he doesn’t agree with the legislation to register all of his firearms, he does abide by the law, besides he has nothing to hide and figures there is no harm done in telling the government what they most likely already know.
So John registers his firearms just as directed by the government. Contrary to the naysayers and conspiracy theorists nothing happens. There are no jack-booted-thugs breaking in his home to search it; there are not any special visits from government officials wanting to verify his list; basically life continues on for John just as normal.
Then one night as he is sitting down to dinner with his family there is a knock at the door. John opens the door to be greeted by agents of the ATF. The agents identify themselves and ask that they be allowed to inspect John’s inventory of weapons to confirm that the list he turned in to the government is accurate. Being a law abiding citizen with nothing to hide John complies.
During the visit it is discovered that John neglected to inventory a pistol that was handed down from his grandfather as a family heirloom. While ordinarily this would be a simple clerical error, John failed to fully read the 1,500 plus pages of regulations pertaining to the simple gun registry enacted by the government. Buried deep in the law is a provision pertaining to penalties that can be levied by the government in just such as instance as the one John is facing.
Unfortunately for John the penalty for violating this federal law is the confiscation of his firearms inventory. He is also arrested for failure to comply with government regulations concerning the possession of deadly weapons, which is a felony under the new legislation.
John tries to protest; he grows angry and lashes out at the agents who now have a team of federal law enforcement agents on the scene as back up. John is subdued with force. When his wife also begins to retaliate, she too is taken into custody. John’s home is searched thoroughly, his children are placed in the care of the state, and his property is eventually confiscated through a provision in the law.
Sounds crazy doesn’t it? I know many are saying that this could not happen in America. We are the United States. We value our freedom above all else and would never let a government take that freedom from us.
But what everyone fails to see is that the freedom we hold so dear to our hearts was not won just with words. It was not simply handed down to us by a generous all powerful government. No, it was won with the blood of our forebears. And once it was won, our founders realized that the only way to stop a government bent on tyranny and totalitarian rule was to ensure that government never be able to hold sway over the people. The founders knew that a government most likely would fear no one man. But it would fear the people; especially those armed and able to rebel against such tyranny.
But once that government removes those evil guns from the hands of law abiding citizens then all will be well with the world right? That depends on what side of aisle you are on; if you are entrenched with the government then all will be well. If you are part of the citizenry then all will be fine.
As long as you do everything the government tells you, everything will be great. Just don’t stray from the government approved path.