Tag Archives: PPYI

Inadvertent Honesty?

I often ask victim disarming gun controllers how they expect their infringement du jour to apply to criminals who already bypass laws. For instance, I recently asked Senator Johnny Isakson [R-GA] how he expects to get criminals — who already obtain their firearms through unlawful channels around 93% of the time — to submit their black market purchases for “universal background checks;” otherwise known as preemptively-prove-your-innocence (PPYI) prior restraint of rights.

I almost never get an answer. Certainly Isakson hasn’t answered yet.

This why:

Tucker Zings Progressive’s Attempt at Comparing the Border Wall to Lawful Gun Ownership
“And to borrow the NRA’s argument though, if we put a wall up though to block out illegal, you know people from coming here to want to harm us, people who come here legally are going to be the only ones stopped by that wall because people who are going to come here illegally or to harm us are going to figure out a way around it, just like they’re going to figure out how to get guns.”
[…]
[Former aide to Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY)] Hahn laughed and then continued, “No, no. Law-abiding people will be stopped by the wall but the people who wish to break our laws will avoid the wall. That’s the right’s argument for everything! It should be accepted here too!”

Don’t build a wall, because it only stops law-abiding people.

Do pass victim disarmament laws because they only stop law-abiding people.

Masks off. They aren’t even pretending anymore. As we all knew, the laws are never intended to do anything but infringe human/civil rights. Criminals aren’t even supposed to be affected.

That’s why Democrats (and Republicans like Isakson) see no irony in announcing new PPYI legislation to “honor” Gabby Giffords, who was shot by a man who passed a background check.

 

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GAO: Background checks STILL don’t work

This just screams for comment, given that universal preemptively-prove-your-innocence prior restraint is probably going to pass next year.

GAO: Few Individuals Denied Firearms Purchases Are Prosecuted and ATF Should Assess Use of Warning Notices in Lieu of Prosecutions
Federal and selected state law enforcement agencies that process firearm-related background checks through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) collectively investigate and prosecute a small percentage of individuals who falsify information on a firearms form (e.g., do not disclose a felony conviction) and are denied a purchase. Federal NICS checks resulted in about 112,000 denied transactions in fiscal year 2017, of which the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) referred about 12,700 to its field divisions for further investigation. U.S. Attorney’s Offices (USAO) had prosecuted 12 of these cases as of June 2018.

CNN is reporting this as “More than 99.9% of those who were investigated escaped with nothing more than a warning.”

But that’s misleading. It’s far, far worse than that.

112,090 denials. 12 prosecutions. Only 0.0107% — a hair over one-one hundredth of one percent — of denials are prosecuted.

112,090 denials. Only 11% are even referred for investigation. Meaning it was clear that 89% of the denials were false positives. 89% of denials were clearly violations of constitutionally protected human/civil rights.

Of the 12,710 that warranted looking into, only 12 were clear enough cases of prohibited persons trying to obtain firearms to bother going to court. That suggests that the percentage of rights violations was actually 99.99%, but not necessarily.

ATF field divisions […] generally only refer cases to USAOs for prosecution when aggravating circumstances exist, such as violent felonies or multiple serious offenses over a short period of time.

It turns out that they referred 50 cases for prosecution. Fifty cases of people allegedly with a history of “violent felonies or multiple serious offenses over a short period of time” referred.

12 the prosecutors actually think can be prosecuted.

But there’s a big gap between 12,710 investigations and 50 prosecution referrals. And the report does not give a number for “proper denial, but we didn’t think it worth wasting our time,” or “Nope; X number shouldn’t have been denied.”

By the government’s own numbers, a bare minimum of 89% percent of false positive denials are proof that NICS background checks don’t work. The number could range as high as 99.99%.

Background checks don’t work. The results are meaningless. And the GAO essentially found that other folks agree with that assessment.

Officials from 10 of our 13 selected POC states said that they do not
investigate or prosecute NICS denials.

Here’s another number: 77% of states know NICS results are worthless and will not even try to investigate referred (the one’s which might actually be problems, much less the rest) denials.

 

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What color is your coat?

David Codrea addresses the recent minor furor over the lack of prosecutions for NICS denials.

Gun Groups and Grabbers Find Common Ground on NICS Denial Prosecutions
That mass roundups of the scofflaws haven’t begun has got gun-grabbers – and some gun groups – in a lather. Lost in much of the noise is economist and author John Lott’s contention that a “high percentage” of “false positives” wrongly deny purchases. Not that due process is a concern when there are guns to be “taken off the street”…

I was a bit concerned where Codrea was going with this initially, since I’m not one of those in a lather over lackadaisical enforcement. My take differs that; and it certainly doesn’t share common ground with human/civil rights violating victim-disarmers.

Let me spell it out for those who have not yet caught on:

We now have 20 years of data that clearly establishes that preemptively-prove-your-innocence (PPYI) prior restraint on Second Amendment-guaranteed (not “protected,” sadly) human/civil rights is a complete failure as “gun safety.”

1. Roughly 96% of the denials proved to be false positives. As David notes, there were a mere 12 referrals for prosecution in 2017. The last time I checked the total number since it began, it was…

140. In two decades. Out of tens of millions of NICS transactions.

When the Bradys et al proudly point at three million denials, they are gleefully bragging on violating constitutionally guaranteed (not “protected,” damnit) rights of 2,880,000 innocent people.

Almost three million people that they have successfully — at least for a time — rendered into helpless targets for criminal predators. And they’re happy about it. If you hadn’t before, think about that now.

That’s false positives, which brings us to…

2. False Negatives. Almost every week, I come across a news story about a felon (or other prohibited person) who got a gun by passing the NICS check. No one seems to track false negatives, so I don’t know how common it is. And I’m not speaking of cases like the DC Navy Yard or Sutherland Springs shooters, whom the “authorities” never entered into the NICS databases. I’m speaking of those who are in the databases, who pass by misspelling a name, changing their name, or just giving the wrong birth date.

And those are just the few felons who bother gaming NICS. Roughly 94% of firearms used in crimes were obtained through unlawful channels, completely bypassing NICS.

NICS doesn’t have a bloody thing to do with most criminals; those who do submit to checks can easily spoof it.

The only thing NICS is good for is delaying rights, and completely denying them, for honest folks.

And that is precisely the point.

I have heard well-meaning people call for 18 U.S. Code § 242 – Deprivation of rights under color of law charges for those responsible for the violation of rights through improper denials, or for deaths when a sale is improperly allowed. In fact, survivors of Sutherland Springs (where the Air Force failed to report a felony-equivalent conviction, a domestic violence conviction, and an involuntary committal) trying to sue over it.

I wish them luck, but I’m astonished that the judge hasn’t dismissed the case already. There’s something in 18 U.S. Code § 922 that many people don’t seems to know about.

18 U.S. Code § 922(t):

(6) Neither a local government nor an employee of the Federal Government or of any State or local government, responsible for providing information to the national instant criminal background check system shall be liable in an action at law for damages—
(A) for failure to prevent the sale or transfer of a firearm to a person whose receipt or possession of the firearm is unlawful under this section; or
(B) for preventing such a sale or transfer to a person who may lawfully receive or possess a firearm.

Bureaucratese Translator: We can directly violate your rights — even get you killed — and you cannot hold us responsible for our failures, sucker!

That was built into the Brady Bill. Its original intent was to rape human/civil rights with total impunity.

And the Bradys brag.

As I said, I was briefly concerned about Codrea’s direction, which seemed odd for someone with whom I’ve been somewhat acquainted for years. My confidence in his respect for rights was rewarded.

Enforce existing “Intolerable Acts?”

The people who have been complaining consistently are the NRA’s “leaders.” They’ve made “enforce existing gun laws” a mantra many gun owners repeat unthinkingly, as if ceding to the status quo of infringements will dissuade the totalitarian lobby from enacting any new citizen disarmament edicts.

Substitute “Intolerable Acts” for “gun laws” and see how much amplification that gets from members and supporters. Instead, we got “bipartisan” kabuki.

Intolerable Acts, indeed. Any supposed “pro-gun” group or person in a “lather” over the lack of enforcement of a law meant to violate rights, is supporting exactly the same disarmament which sparked the American Revolution.

Is it any wonder the field of pro-PPYI NRA’s logo is red?

What color is your coat?


Carl is an unpaid TZP volunteer. If you found this post useful, please consider dropping something in his tip jar. He could really use the money, what with truck repairs and recurring bills. And the rabbits need feed. Truck insurance, lest I be forced to sell it. Click here to donate via PayPal.
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About those “fugitives”

Anti-gun types are all upset now that they noticed the FBI was eliminating some folks with active warrants from the NICS database, making them eligible to purchase firearms.

Tens of thousands with outstanding warrants purged from background check database for gun purchases
Tens of thousands of people wanted by law enforcement officials have been removed this year from the FBI criminal background check database that prohibits fugitives from justice from buying guns.

The names were taken out after the FBI in February changed its legal interpretation of “fugitive from justice” to say it pertains only to wanted people who have crossed state lines.

Well… No. It isn’t so much as they changed the interpretation as that they noticed they weren’t in compliance with federal law. Again. (Kind of the inverse of the military not bothering to report felons.)

Allow me to explain, setting aside for the moment the unconstitutional prior restrain of preemptively-prove-your-innocence checks.

It appears from a search on US Code that to be a “fugitive” under 18 U.S. Code § 922, once has to have actively fled when a warrant is issued. The fact that a warrant was issued doesn’t make one a fugitive; or even necessarily aware of the warrant.

No flight, no fugitive.

I find it interesting, but not surprising, that gun controllers think people should be denied rights based on a mere warrant… when it’s Second Amendment rights. But not so much when it comes to other rights.

A federal court found it unconstitutional for for Michigan to deny welfare benefits to people with felony warrants unless they are actually fugitives.

So… same thing for 2nd Amendment rights. For once the DOJ did something half right (the other half being the whole prior restraint bit).

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