You Can Tell the Weakness of the Opposition’s Argument By Length of Their Noses

It shouldn't be called gun control sign

It’s actually a fun read to see how ridiculous the gun control crowd’s arguments can get. Have they no shame? However, as fun as it may be, it is also dangerous. Many voters fail to check facts for themselves. They read a bit of misinformation, a half-truth, or outright lie, and believe it to be the truth when they go to the ballot box.

It should not be called gun controlElections are around the corner. It is going to become the job of each and every one of us to ensure we spread the truth about gun ownership and debunk the antigunner’s lies—loudly and publicly! The Shooter’s Log is dedicated to helping you with the information, but we need a strong grassroots effort to defend the Second Amendment.

Recently, the anti-Second Amendment crowd claimed that 40 percent of gun sales do not go through a federal background check. That sounds rather ominous and downright dangerous at a time when the President is again talking about gun control and threatening to use his executive power to bypass congress. It is also false and comes from a decades-old survey that has been widely debunked.

The NRA ILA recently posted the following points proving the lack of validity to their claim. If we are not vocal in communicating and sharing these points to debunk this falsehood, we will have only ourselves to blame.

  • Media outlets including the Richmond Times-Dispatch and the Washington Post have concluded that this claim is false. Washington Post gave the claim 3 out of 4 Pinocchios for being way off target.
  • Most of the survey covered sales before a federal background check system existed.
  • The 1994 survey was conducted eight months after the Brady Act went into effect, mandating background checks on individuals seeking to buy firearms from federally licensed dealers. Survey participants were asked about their gun acquisitions going back two years. Some of the participants likely made gun purchases before the Brady Act, when they were not required to undergo federal background checks.
  • Self-reports are inherently unreliable—not actual data of sales.
  • Only a small group of gun owners—251 people—answered the survey question about the origin of their weapons. Some of the gun owners were not sure how they had gotten their guns, answering “probably” or “probably not” on whether they got the gun from a licensed firearm dealer.
  • Additionally, the federal survey simply asked buyers if they thought they were buying from a licensed firearms dealer. While all Federal Firearm Licensees (FFLs) do background checks, only those perceived as being FFLs were counted. Yet, there is much evidence that survey respondents who went to the smallest FFLs, especially the “kitchen table” types, had no idea that the dealer was actually “licensed.” Many buyers seemed to think that only “brick and mortar” stores were licensed dealers, and so the survey underestimating the number of sales covered by the checks.
  • The researchers gave this number for all transactions, including gifts, not just “sales.” Count only guns that were bought, traded, borrowed, rented, issued as a job requirement or won through raffles, and 85 percent went through federally licensed gun dealers; just 15 percent would’ve been transferred without a background check.
  • Economist John Lott, the author of several landmark studies on the real-world impact of gun control, has concluded that if you take out transfers of guns either between FFLs or between family members, the remaining number of transfers falls to about 10 percent. Lott stated, “We don’t know the precise number today, but it is hard to believe that it is above single digits.”

Facts on “How Criminals Get Their Guns”

How criminals get guns — According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the vast majority of criminals in state prison for gun crimes get guns through theft, on the black market, from a drug dealer or “on the street.” Less than one percent gets guns from gun shows.

Straw purchasers — According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE), “The most frequent type of trafficking channel identified in ATF investigations is straw purchasing from federally licensed firearms dealers. Nearly 50 percent . . . .” Straw purchasers are people who pass background checks and buy guns for criminals, defeating the background check system.

Stolen guns — According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), “about 1.4 million guns, or an annual average of 232,400, were stolen during burglaries and other property crimes in the six-year period from 2005 through 2010.” The FBI’s stolen firearm file contained over 2 million reports as of March 1995. The BATFE has reported, “Those that steal firearms commit violent crimes with stolen guns, transfer stolen firearms to others who commit crimes, and create an unregulated secondary market for firearms, including a market for those who are prohibited by law from possessing a gun.” Even gun control supporters have said, “Approximately 500,000 guns are stolen each year from private citizens. . . . Obviously, these stolen guns go directly into the hands of criminals. ”A study conducted by gun control supporters found that in 1994 “About 211,000 handguns and 382,000 long guns were stolen in noncommercial thefts that year, for a total of 593,000 stolen firearms.”

How will you help to debunk the anti’s falsehoods? Will you tell a friend, share it on Facebook, tweet this article? Share your best ways to spread the message in the comment sections.


The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (24)

  1. If you own a gun; OWN a method of secure storage; there are many and are not expensive. My first ‘gun “safe”‘ was a HDPE, tuff as nails, triangular storage cabinet that locked with a pad lock and was attached to the walls in a corner of my closet by 3” lag screws; The only way you could get in it was to have a hand held torch to melt the HDPE!!

  2. I just happened to overhear in passing a cellphone conversation and the live person was saying that lifetime gun permits were being cancelled. I didn’t get a chance yo ask where he received his info from but have worried the rest of the day about it !!

  3. Here is what you can’t argue. If heavy firearms restrictions (confiscations) are put in place, over a period of time you will see a drop in firearms related crime, and accidents. Does that mean less crime? Possibly. Does it mean less violent death? Perhaps.

    Firearms are efficient at killing. They are better than the alternative, which is why military forces have adopted them. If you ban motorized saws nation- wide, you can bet less trees get cut down. Yes, some will get cut down with hand saws and axes, but there will be a drastic reduction.

    The argument isn’t about these current ideas the anti-gun crowd is using at the moment. These are just a means to an end. The ultimate goal is not reasonable gun laws, but the outright ban of firearms in general. They know that you don’t eat an elephant at once, you have to take a bite at a time.

    The real argument is about the end goal of the anti-gun camp, and how close they are allowed to get to achieving their goal. We have our right to bear arms at a price. Guns are relatively easy to purchase legally and illegally. Magazine size is comparable to military standards, and ammunition is accessible for the most part. Because of these things, if you break into someone’s house in the U.S. , you have about a 30% chance of finding a gun, and it is easy to sell a gun on the black market as with anything else, and that keeps the availability high for criminals and the mentally unstable to do bad things to our fellow citizens. This is the cost of our right.

    The alternative is to reduce the supply to an extreme scarcity level, and change the culture to the point that even the sight of a firearm is alarming enough to call the police about. I promise the gun related crime rate will go down, but the ability for citizens to check the power of the militia, or the military, or the state all but vanish.

    The 2nd Amendment does not protect your right to keep a pistol in your belt, or a AR in your truck for personal protection, or hunting, it is there to ensure an armed resistance to protect the State as a whole from any usurpation of power, not just the Federal, or State, or military or militia.

    People of voting age scoff at the idea of a tyrannical government (or militia) because we have not experienced one in our lifetime, but our lifetime is short, and our country is young.

    Speed limits reduce vehicular fatalities. Banning cars eliminates them.
    I prefer to wear a seat belt, follow the speed limit, and drive as safe as I can in order to maintain my ability to get to where I need to go in a reasonable amount of time, but that does not eliminate the risk of being killed by a careless, or drunken driver.

    1. “If heavy firearms restrictions (confiscations) are put in place, over a period of time you will see a drop in firearms related crime, and accidents.”

      Go ask Australia how a mass firearm confiscation in a country with no land borders is working out for them. I’ll give you a hint – it worked about as well there as it worked here for Chicago and Washington, D.C.

      Additionally, data from the early 1900s to now shows there has been a ~ 95% decline in accidental firearm deaths in the Unites States despite a continuing rise in privately-owned firearms.

    2. You are right. The 2nd is about hunting. Its about self defense, like the oath says, against enemies both foreign and domestic. Everyone is fully aware of what the gun control crowd wants, and for what reasons. My motto, personally….. Id rather die on my feet fighting, as opposed to on my knees begging. This being said from a former U.S.Army MP.

    3. Joel, I read your post trice, but still cannot understand what your point is. It’s just a set of paragraphs, one contradicting to the next one, and that’s it. Sorry for being straight…

  4. Define “when not in posession” BIllyB. If I’m home in bed with my gun “locked up” in my safe, it’ll probably be too late for use by the time I get my safe open and investigate that bump in the night.

  5. This is primarily in reference to comments made in Billy B’s post below:

    I am anti-law to any legislation relating to guns. Primarily because once you open that door, the anti-gun legislators get carried away, so it’s just better policy to say ‘NO’ to any gun laws and trust that gun owners will simply know to do the right thing when storing their weapons.

    However, even if it were a perfect world, you still would have perfect idiots, so I actually agree with your proposed law. If the gun is not on your person, it should always be locked away in a glovebox, gun safe, or strongbox.

    Even though these measures are not full proof, burglars have to move fast and often this serves as enough of a deterrent to at least reduce thefts of guns and other valuables. But more importantly these containers can save the lives of curious children.

    A good many years ago I had purchased a little closet safe for my first home defense handgun. I had planned to mount the safe during the coming weekend, but began to store the gun in the safe right away. Wouldn’t you know it, the very next day our home was burglarized and they stole the safe with the gun inside.

    My kids were in school and my wife and I were at work when they literally kicked down the back door and ransacked our house. I think I felt more violated as well as embarrassed given I am a law enforcement officer.

    Though we live in a nice neighborhood, it felt like an inside job (so-to-speak) given they knew when to hit us in broad daylight. It meant they could watch us undetected and that led me to suspect a group of rich kids that were still living off their parents after high school. In particularly there was this son of one cross-street neighbor and a group of his friends that always seemed to just be hanging out all day, getting high and never had a job or went to college.

    My suspensions were confirmed when another of the neighbor boys later approached us, conscience riddled, and told us that same kid came to him asking the best way to cut into a safe. He said the kid later returned with the gun asking how to cut off the trigger lock. Ultimately this neighbor even said how the kid bragged about how easy it was to kick in our back door.

    The local detective working the case was with another department than mine. I called immediately and notified them of this new information. I thought it was fantastic that we had a solid opportunity to actually get a gun off the streets, especially my gun.

    Here’s the real pisser – after repeated messages left, I never heard back from the detective. I went to my supervisor and asked for advice because I didn’t want to appear as though I was throwing my weight around which could cause heartburn with another department. My boss said to give the detective a final warning and indicate I would next be taking it up the chain.

    After that, the detective left me a nasty message yelling that he’d already followed up on the lead and that it was a dead-end; and that if I had a problem with that, to go ahead and call his superior. Being young and newly assigned, I didn’t want to rock the boat so I left one message with his supervisor and when I never heard back, I reluctantly let it go.

    To my knowledge, my gun is still somewhere out on the streets. Were I to have that to do all over again, and given my experience now as a veteran officer, I would have pushed for an IA investigation into this detective and his supervisor. I learned a lot about how crummy the system really is and vowed to never be like that.

    1. In LA, only about 3% (!!!) of gun-theft related cases get fully investigated. In other words, the LAPD do not give a rat azz about it. Instead, the City Council adopts more and more sensless anti-gun laws every year. What a farce!

  6. Im pro gun and pro second amendment but I’m pro responsibility as well.
    Not left nor right.
    I was baffled at the fact that you don’t require any legal step to sell privately a gun in Texas. I’m sorry but that is bad news. Why do I have to go through background checks and not the private person?
    What is even more funny is that when I did sell one gun and posted on a forum that I would only sell to LEO or CHL all the forum jumped in because I wanted to be responsible and assure no one that shouldn’t get a gun would get it from me.
    We definitely need laws that regulate gun ownership to a point. If you have been in jail you have no right to have a gun. Violent criminal? No second amendment for you. You lost your right when you couldn’t behave in society

    1. If you, as a private seller, insist on only selling to CHL/CPL/CCW holders (depending on the state) or to a LEO who can show a badge, that is your right. That doesn’t exempt you from public criticism by those who disagree.

      However, when it comes to the law there are two fundamental issues with the current push by the gun control crowd for so-called “universal background checks”.

      1) DOJ has studied how convicted felons obtained their guns, and only a statistically insignificant minority purchased from private sellers while lying about their criminal history. The overwhelming majority stole their guns themselves, bought stolen guns on the black market, obtained them from family members who knew they couldn’t legally have them, or sent a straw purchaser to a FFL to buy on their behalf. “Universal” background checks will not impede them in any appreciable way.

      2) DOJ has also studied the underlying concept of “universal” background checks, and concluded they would not serve any real benefit unless we also have universal gun registration.

      Gun owners and gun-rights groups do not oppose “universal” background checks because they hate paperwork or want to make it easy for criminals to get guns. They oppose them because they are a farce that will accomplish essentially nothing in regard to keeping guns away from criminals.

    2. I understand the point you are trying to make. I live in Indiana and am under no obligation under state law to jump through any hoops to sell a rifle or handgun of mine to another person. A receipt of who I sold it to and when is all that is required.
      Even though I am under no obligation any firearm I sell goes through a FFL.
      I pay for myself and it’s worth the $25.00 for the piece mind that I am relieved of any responsibility for the firearm. Should it be a law? Don’t know/don’t care I think it is the responsible thing to do. I don’t need to be arrested if a firearm I used to own is used in the commission of a crime and I failed to create a rock solid paper trail just to save a few bucks.

    3. John R., in California, it is a law. ALL gun transfers, including gifts, raffle wins and so on, must go through a FFL dealer. Does it work? Do California criminals, gangs, illegals have less guns? NOPE…

  7. stolen guns & criminals having guns is a loaded question Their should be one new law inacted when any person buys a gun they have to have a lock box or safe t0 store it when not in their possession .thus any gun stolen not locked up 90 days automatic jail time people shouldbe held responsible .all the guns just found laying around children find & shoot each other.this would stop a majority of stolen guns on the street or involved in crime .

    1. There’s already a federal law covering minors obtaining guns due to the negligence of the owners. You get a free yellow pamphlet explaining it with very new handgun purchase.

    2. Bully if you want that kind crap laws feel free to move to California, they have stupid laws like that. Remember when seconds count as a victim of a crime the Police are just minutes away.

  8. I CRACKED UP LAUGHING, when I First Read It. The Nosology or Nose Law of 1848, with SIX classifications of “NOSES”:
    Class I. The Roman Nose
    Class II. The Greek Nose
    Class III. The Cogitative or Wide Nose
    Class IV. The Jewish Nose
    Class V. The Snub Nose
    Class VI. The Poetic or Celestial (Turned Up Nose)…

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