An Interesting Article from a anti-gun point of view. He’s obviously in love with gun control, and like many anti-gun media types wants to go “Undercover” to a gun show. First maybe Barron or somebody else from Washington can help explain the subtle nuance of this statement:
“Remember to dress Lewis County and not Seattle-USC,” my friend text messaged me beforehand. I think I blended in just fine, other than the fact I was one of only two people of color there.
First up the “one of only two people of color there” kinda bugs me. According to the latest census Washington is 81.2% White, and Lewis County is 92.96% white, so his observation was really just the general population of the area, but hey, let’s make a comment about race.
He didn’t say WHAT he wore to “blend in”, but maybe I’m letting his politics color my reaction, but it really read like he was “othering” the attendees of the show. So those of you in Washington, what’s that county like, and better yet, what are the views of that country from the denizens of the Puget sound?
For the full experience, I went through a free background check after eying a $300 Winchester shotgun. Bremerton-based Palmer Ordnance was there to run the background checks using the federal database. I filled out a private-party transfer information sheet and a federal Firearms Transaction Record known as Form 4473. There was only one guy ahead of me but he had such a common name, it was taking a while to find him in the system. If your name is John Smith and a felon shares your name and birth date, it could cause delay. Eventually, the man was told something like he would have to wait as long as three business days for the background check to be completed before he could purchase the gun. The buyer shook his head, canceled the deal and walked away.
So overall he seemed to do a pretty good job at talking about the show. No fixation on “Nazi Memorabilia” that most “undercover” “Progressives” seem to fixate on. Yeah you can buy a lot of Nazi shit at gun shows. The antis LOVE to focus on this making gun shows seem like Neo-Nazi fanatics, while they ignore the fact that you can generally buy military surplus stuff from ANY country there, including Japanese and Italian stuff, as well as vintage gear from all the allied powers stuff. I don’t have any Nazi-Marked gear myself, but I have LOADS of Red Army crap, as well as gear from the Communist Warsaw Pact areas.
Since you read this blog you can guess that I’m not much of a Communist Sympathizer. Honestly I got into Russian Surplus because it was cheap and available, and later started to REALLY enjoy the irony of a capitalist American collecting and investing in hardware from a Communist regime.
Still when it comes to the background check he shows something the antis NEVER tell you about. Background checks can be quick and easy, but they can also be a NIGHTMARE! He doesn’t seem to get the gravity of his observation. The man was getting a background check at a gunshow, which are generally 2-3 day events, and his delay might be as long as 3 days. He may have driven for a good distance to get there, and he may not even be approved before the show wraps up. Further the vendor or seller he was probably going to work with might have traveled even longer, or a distance away from his home making the sale not worth his time.
Given a DELAY (not a denial) he walked away from the transaction. This, and turning normal gun handling and sales into serious crimes is the whole point of I-594. Also this exposes a big lie of the antis. It only takes 60 seconds to complete a background check? First up, no it doesn’t. Second this guy had to wait in line behind somebody getting the run-around by the ATF, and likely he is already a legal gun owner, so yeah this takes time.
Also it’s nice that this check was provided free of charge, but that’s a rarity in itself. Most places charge for checks.
Then it was my turn. We had a slight problem. The vintage gun I was interested in purchasing did not have a serial number. Someone brought it over from the dealer’s table. No digits anywhere, but that didn’t stop the process.
Total ignorance. I have a few guns with no serial numbers. He didn’t seem to do any research that serial numbers weren’t required by law until 1968, so unless the gun was a really high-end unit, the company wanted a special quality control resource, or it was military hardware, many guns made before ’68 weren’t marked with a serial number. Why bother? Before then there were no firearms dealers. My pocket knife doesn’t have a serial number, nor does my snow shovel. It’s just one more number to keep track of that nobody cares about, so why waste the machining step?
There were certainly big dealers at the show, but most of the exhibitors appeared to be hobbyists and small-business owners. One seller from West Seattle did not need a license to set up a table. He was trying to help an elderly friend sell some of her late husband’s guns. It had taken two years for them to figure out the combination to his old safe. Inside, they found more than $4,000 worth of guns, including a vintage German Nazi pistol. If he could sell a few of those, he said, “it sure would help this widow get through a tough time.”
Thankfully background checks were being done for free there. If your intent of selling a gun is to get needed cash, you don’t want to waste any of it on paying somebody to call the ATF. Also note the fixation on the “Nazi Pistol”, I’m betting it’s a Luger or a Walther. No word if he also had some vintage American stuff, or Italian, or post-Nazi German stuff. Sounds like there was a bunch of guns there, but only the Nazi-Marked gun gets mentioned….
Another seller several rows over waved around a copy of the initiative as he tried to explain to a customer how taxes would be collected under the new law. He looked frustrated.
Was that you, Barron?
Some of the wording in the new law could be clarified. But from my experience, I just don’t view the concept of background checks as a huge burden. Of course, there are many others who adamantly disagree.
Yeah, like the dude who likely had a clean background but wasn’t allowed to buy the gun he wanted!
Back at the gun show in Centralia, I walked the Winchester back to the dealer, thanked him for letting me explore the screening process and pondered what had just happened. Technically, I was not supposed to handle the firearm at all until the background check was complete and the seller was notified, but the gun had no ammunition and I probably looked harmless. In any case, there was no way anyone there was going to enforce the rule.
So he spammed the NICS system. Is that even legal? I never even thought about it myself. Also notes that he OPENLY admitted to breaking the law, but it wasn’t enforced. He COULD be getting a court summons, but since he isn’t that’s “No big deal”!
My friend, who has been to these swap meets many times before, encouraged me to take one last look around. I saw law-abiding people, some of whom probably feel unfairly targeted by the provisions in I-594. They shouldn’t.
The new law will hopefully prevent sellers from inadvertently selling arms to people with bad intentions. And though some gun enthusiasts might be annoyed at the prospect of having to go through a background check and maybe waiting a few extra days to be cleared, state law does not prohibit responsible owners from purchasing weapons in Washington state.
Yep, we’re stupid for disliking this law even tho just in your few hours you saw somebody who probably won’t get the gun he wants, and can legally have, and you admit you violated the law just on this little stunt.