News Stories

New Law Means More Gun Crimes Than Ever

Congress is passing more laws than ever, and some of them are downright dangerous. For instance, a new study finds that the number of guns that were subsequently linked to crime sold by a single store--a Milwaukee-area gun shop called Badger Guns & Ammo--increased dramatically after Congress adopted measures likely to reduce the risks gun dealers face if they divert guns to criminals.

The Tiahrt amendments are a series of amendments to appropriations bills and named for the sponsor, former US Representative Todd Tiahrt (R-KS). They became law in 2003 and prohibit the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) from releasing data from crime gun traces. Gun traces reveal when, where, and from whom a gun recovered from a crime was originally purchased.

In 2004, the Tiahrt amendments further restricted crime gun-trace data by limiting access to government officials and prohibiting the use of these data in firearm dealer license revocations and civil law suits. In addition, the law prohibits ATF from requiring gun dealers to do a physical inventory of their firearms for compliance inspections and requires the FBI to destroy data from background checks of gun purchasers within 24 hours.

In 1999, ATF data showed that Badger Guns & Ammo led the nation's gun dealers with the most gun sales later linked to crime gun traces. After the Tiahrt amendments went into effect, guns diverted to criminals soon after being sold by Badger increased by over 200%.

Researcher Jon Vernick says, "Our findings are consistent with other research that has shown that greater oversight and regulation of gun sellers is linked with fewer guns diverted to criminals shortly after retail sales." Congress recently passed another appropriations bill with an amendment that makes PERMANENT most of the protections for gun sellers that in prior Tiahrt amendments been limited to the year the bill was passed.

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Another ridiculous leftist propaganda piece makes it to the "news" section of

I recently worked for a year at a large and very busy gun shop, and I can tell you that the industry is already so heavily regulated by the federal government, it's a wonder that it is able to operate at all. It's worth pointing out that there is nothing in the constitution that gives the federal government the right to regulate firearm sales, purchase, or ownership.

If you want to talk about "gun crimes", look into Eric Holder's lying to congress about his sponsorship of Operation Fast and Furious. He should have been impeached and removed from office long ago.

Eddie - why is the piece 'leftist' as is simply reporting some research? Do you think it is wrong ? In the UK both left and right find the US gun debate mystifying in the illogical politicisation that seems to apply. Apologies for my ignorance but at face value much looser gun ownership seems to be by far the main reason why for many years the murder rate per 100,000 in the US is FIVE times that of the UK and one of the highest in the developed world.

Real research entails working towards an unbiased conclusion that is not presupposed before starting the project. Jon Vernick works at the John Hopkins Bloomberg school of public health and based on his CV has spent a lot of time and effort demonizing a Constitutionally protected right. That's why it is leftist.

More lies from crypto fascists. As for the Europeans, too bad, if not for Americans with bad tempers and guns, you would be hailing the fuhrer right now!! I do not care about supposed statistics of reputedly developed countries, where the crime statistics are a state secret, and self defense offends the feminized men...I work in a gun shop, and we regularly report suspected sales like this, the ATF does nothing or very little...I will not sell my soul to some government for supposed safety, I will keep my gun in my belt and take my chances...I want one of the anti-gun fruit flies to tell me which murderous dictator allowed unrestricted gun ownership in the past...Stalin, Hitler, the Turks???


Whitley, you need to stop this sort of stuff...without freedom, nothing is possible in any sense, esoteric or otherwise...


Get bent, Whitley. You sound like that jerk who runs NY City... Bloomschmuck. You don't like guns? Move to Mexico. You'll wish you had one but it's against the law to have one there... except for the guy who blows your head off and gets away clean. By the way, the Grays are very susceptible to lead poisoning if you ever need to get rid of that crew who follow you around.

Wow, I can sense the passion on this subject and thanks Hagbard for expressing a heartfelt reason. I thought your constitution had that right as a design to protect Americans from harm in emergencies (in that case the thought was future threats from Britain or other European powers against the hard won independant freedom) and that is fine. Vonmazur I agree the debt my country owed to the US in helping the last bastion of freedom that had stood alone against Hitler and made some difficult payment in much treasure, the end of empire and much blood then and since ( handed for aid, treausure and the many dead troops in post-war alliances inc family). I love America and think we share more values than most countries. But what has that got to do with putting your children and family and friends at risk from easy access to high risk people (no denial to most) through a strange blindspot to regulation ? The beauty of Unknowncountry is 'dare the edge' conversations that challenge each of us (including me) to consider (not have to agree) other peoples view points.

I live in the USA, am a registered Democrat, have a largely leftist point of view. However, I love our Constitution and I understand fully why our founders wrote the Second Amendment. I am a fervent supporter of Second Amendment rights. That said, I also know that there is a vast criminal network in our nation that does *not* support either our nation, nor our Constitution. I don't relish the notion of being caught in a fire-fight between them and law-abiding citizens. It's scary, when you contemplate it. I don't know what the answer is, but I know it's not going to be found in the testy and angry dialogue such as we're seeing here right now. It's so sad that people with different viewpoints cannot simply have a discussion without going off like rockets. What is this? Too much caffeine? ;-)

Thanks Cowgirl for the friendly spirit of debate & information that this website is about. To me that complex mix between second amendment rights & the cost in lives is something very difficult to understand outside the US because externally it 'seems' a very simple thing to solve. What is the (without - honestly - irony) the killer argument that makes the statuos quo the right thing ?

At the end of the day, we're all "high risk people" given the right circumstances. Since we are theoretically innocent until proven guilty we are presumed to be "safe" until our actions determine otherwise. The founding fathers were quite clear that the people were to be armed in a like manner as any standing army or state organized militia because the country could be put at risk by enemies foreign and domestic. They were clear that includes the federal government if it were to overstep it's Constitutional constraints. The shrill response to any anti-gun measures is a natural reaction to the ultimate barrier to a certain police state.

The primary reason why the current occupant of the White House has not openly fought against our right is he's aware of the potential backlash. Unfortunately he chose to try to sway public opinion via "Fast and Furious" and got snake bitten by it. A second term is guaranteed to entice him to act and with our militarized police forces at all levels, it's likely to get ugly. Look around, the drumbeats of the second civil war are getting louder.

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