Saturday, June 09, 2007

The Internet Gun Trafficking Problem

Internet Gun Trafficking. Yep, That's the problem. At least if you're completely freakin' clueless.
This year's mass shooting incident at Virginia Tech shone the spotlight directly into this murky commercial sector. The Virginia Tech shooter, Cho Seung-Hui, purchased his 22-calibre Walther semi-automatic pistol from, a Wisconsin-based online gun dealer for a mere US$ 267. A snip. In this case, state legislation prevented the pistol from being shipped directly to Cho's campus dormitoryroom, and it was instead delivered to a nearby pawn shop – always a wise precaution.

In addition to handguns, most states allow the online sale of militaryor military-type weapons and ammunition as well. One of the leading online firearms retailers in the USA,, offers hundreds of personal defence items for purchase over the web.

You couldn’t make this up, so here it is straight between the eyes as it were. Impact Guns is currently running a "Father's Day Special" on semi-automaticAK-47 assault rifles. For example Dad mightask junior to buy him the Kalashinikov modelAMD65 7.62x39 with a 30 round magazine and folding stock, which apparently makes the weapon easier to conceal. Pops might also get a kick out of a WASR10 7.62x39 AK-47 assault rifle complete with bayonet. So handy for the rush hour don’tcha know.

These weapons are "in stock" ready to be shipped "within 48 hrs" of purchase at the Father's Day sale price of $415.79 dollars, marked down from $461.99.
Now, for those of you with a clue, what do they completely fail to mention here? Could it be that federal law requires that all interstate gun transfers be made between companies or people who have federal firearms licenses? The Cho incidents relation to the gun being purchased on line completely ignores that he had to go through the pawn-shop because it has an FFL. They mention the and completely fail to mention that their site specifies that the transfer must be through an FFL. They're in WI so the transfer to VA required the involvement of an FFL.

Didn't mention that Cho passed the NICs check either, but hey, when you're distorting the truth you don't actually need facts.
Internet gun sales were, in fact, officially recognised as a problem as far back as 1999, when New York Senator Charles Schumer proposed a bill in Congress called the "Internet Gun Trafficking Act", which sought to "plug a gaping loophole in the enforcement of federal firearms laws--the ability of felons and minors to find guns for sale on-line and illegally acquire those guns without detection."

Schumer's bill got nowhere but, in 2005, a particular piece of legislation covering aspects of the gun industry and weapons ecommerce in the US was voted into law . The "Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act" legally "prohibits civil liability actions from being broughtor continued against manufacturers, distributors, dealers, or importers of firearms or ammunition for damages, injunctive or other relief resulting from the misuse of their products."

That pretty much says it all.
Yep, it does indeed say it all. The only problem is that this is the biggest lie I've seen in a very long time. If someone buys a gun online and it doesn't go through an FFL holder, the seller and the buyer are committing a felony. About the only way you could buy a gun online would require the user to purchase it from an individual in his own state who is making a private sale and then must meet all local and state requirements. I would also bet that in the majority of states, even that is illegal.

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