Obama Speaks on Gun Control

He mostly says we need to do a better job of getting states to report mental health records to NICS. That’s the meat of it. The rest of platitudes. In speaking of “porous background checks,” he did not call for closing the gun show loophole. I would imagine the Bradys are going to be less than thrilled with this, but they’ll try their best to extract what little marrow was left in the bone the President just threw them. Obama has basically just called for the bill that passed after Virginia Tech, only with vigor this time. Since I didn’t have any serious objection to that bill, I don’t really have any serious objections to more incentives, provided they are respectful of federalist principles, and respect the sovereignty of the states.

UPDATE: I’ll leave it to readers to decide what it means that Obama released this to the Arizona Star, and not to the New York Times or Washington Post, at a time when the news cycle is focused pretty exclusively on what’s happening in Japan. Also, think about what that says about how highly Barry thinks of the Bradys.

UPDATE: More from Dave Hardy here. He also doesn’t think this is going to live up to the expectations of the gun control groups that endorsed Obama.

27 thoughts on “Obama Speaks on Gun Control”

  1. We need to get the ability to purchase firearms anywhere in the US before we agree to the reporting of mental health records to NICS.

    There isn’t any valid reason for not allowing out of state purchases since, theoretically, these background checks are for all disqualifying actions recorded anywhere in the US.

  2. Wrongo. Read the article again and think like a totalitarian dictator. Or Goebbels. He mentions “sellers”, not GUN DEALERS! He want “to provide an instant, accurate, comprehensive and consistent system for background checks to sellers who want to do the right thing, and make sure that criminals can’t escape it.”.

    What is he talking about? ALL private sales. He’s going for the whole enchilada, licensing and registration. And he’s going to do it on the basis that it’s “reasonable”. Why no REASONABLE person could oppose a simple system like we have when you sell a CAR! No REASONABLE person would oppose paying JUST A FEW DOLLARS for a “license” for their gunz. Why that would just PROTECT gun owners if their gun is stolen! And it’s so REASONABLE that when a person wants to sell a gun, they just call the 800 # or log onto the government database and REGISTER that sale.

    No, this is no itty bitty step. ObamMAO is going to TAX guns out of existence. Once that license scheme is set up, the socialists will use it to make guns unaffordable and they will be registed, probably with IRS.

  3. “he did not call for closing the gun show loophole.”
    Sure sounds like he did to me.
    Someone let me know when he says there’s no need to have a ban on “high-capacity” magazines, and maybe I’ll start to believe he’s not a complete bs artist.

  4. He is a complete BS artist, but one that would like to get another four years in office. As for the so called gun show loophole, I am sure he would love to mention it, and push for gun control laws addressing it and everything else from the Brady bunch wish list. The fact he didn’t use the phrase is noteworthy. A respectable number of democrats are actually on our side on this issue, so dear leader has to pretend to give a crap. At least while he still has an election to concern himself with.

    “I believe that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right to bear arms. And the courts have settled that as the law of the land.”
    Heh. The fact that one of their own is in the white house and is making statements like that ( no matter how sincere) has to hurt.

  5. This lazy, pantywaist, lightweight President isn’t going to do one single thing….beyond talk in platitudes and generalities about gun control. He can be swatted away like an annoying fly. HE’S already forgotten about it.

  6. It’s all well and good to ask states to report mental health records to NICS, But — and it’s a big one — it runs afoul of the Patients’ Bill of Rights, which includes the right “To be treated confidentially, with access to their records limited to those involved in their care or designated by the patient”:

    It appears that at present the states can’t go trolling through people’s medical records to see if they’ve ever received mental health care. That’s probably why Form 4473 asks if you’ve ever been adjudicated mentally defective or committed to a mental institution, both of which would be in court records, but doesn’t ask if you’ve been treated for any mental illness, which would ask you to violate your right to patient confidentiality.

    So.. Sounds good but it’s largely ineffectual — kinda like Obama himself, huh? It for sure wouldn’t stop someone like Jared Loughner, who had never been adjudicated mentally defective or committed.

  7. People need to think long and hard about how the government handles medical records and the topic of “mental illness”.

    I’ve seen quite a few people in business and academic settings that were forced by their employers/institutions to attend counseling as a result of interpersonal conflicts or PC nonsense run amok.

  8. Sebastian, how long before all gun owners are automatically judged to have a mental illness. Google conservative mental illness.

  9. Anyone who believes Obama wouldn’t ban handguns (and most long guns even) if he could is kidding themselves. Why do you think he always talks about “clingers”?

  10. The law requires an adjudication in order to declare someone mentally ill to the point where ether may not own firearms, though some states, like California, have weaker standards. But the federal standards require adjudication.

    That’s a legal process, not a medical one. There’s no danger under current law for people to be declared mentally ill because they sought or were forced by their employer to seek counseling, and there’s no need for government to access anyone’s medical records. Adjudication for mental illness is a legal process, not a medical one.

  11. Anyone who believes Obama wouldn’t ban handguns (and most long guns even) if he could is kidding themselves. Why do you think he always talks about “clingers”?

    I don’t think the Tiger has changed his stripes on the gun issue. I’m sure he’d love to pass broad and sweeping gun control. But he’d also like to get re-elected, and his political instincts are telling him to tip toe around this issue. That’s a good thing. I don’t really care what Obama really think, I care about him letting this issue go long enough to get rid of him in 2012.

    Even if he’s left us alone, for the most part, he’s also putting people on the Supreme Court who would vote to overturn Heller, and we can’t let that continue.

  12. “he’s also putting people on the Supreme Court who would vote to overturn Heller”

    Yes indeed. Flipping the 5-4 court is their best bet. I’ve mentioned it before, maybe in the comments here too. If I were on their team, I would lay low and not push for anything right now. As much as possible I would remove the second amendment issue from the next election. In addition to a court pick, a second term Obama could also do some damage with executive orders.

  13. Yep…. that’s what they’ll do if they are smart. I’m not sure the Brady’s have the luxury of time on their side, however. But Obama and other gun control proponents sure do.

  14. Reporting mental health to NICS is a recipe for disaster. Soon Christian beliefs will be a sign of mental problems. I am not a conspiracy theorists — I just know he has an agenda.

  15. See previous comment about this being an adjudicative process, and not a medical one. It is also, with very limited exception (such as for the Veterans Administration) a state process that Obama does not control.

  16. The whole “gunshow loophole” is actually as much about the destruction of the First Amendment as it is the Second.
    Part of the First is the right to “peaceably assemble.”
    A lot goes on at gunshows besides the buying and selling of firearms and ammunition.
    No matter if you call it networking, social bonding, or just getting together, Americans have the right to “peaceably assemble.”
    It’s critical because we are still cave men and women in our brains. Telephone, e-mail, chat rooms are all very nice, but we are still cave men chatting by the fire. There is no substitute for people getting together, and never will be.
    The anti-firearms people know this and that’s why they scream about the gunshow loophole. They want to take away our right to peaceably assemble.

  17. I agree, but their purpose isn’t just to rain on our parade. Any place gun owners can get together and talk, socialize and organize is a problem for them because that’s a big source of our political power.

    Every one of these gun show loophole bills has created onerous requirements intended to largely destroy them, or at the least create a legal mechanism by which they can be destroyed by a sufficiently hostile Administration.

  18. It does no good to say “get mental health records to the Feds quicker”, if those records are never generated because the sheriff’s noblesse oblige attitude toward a fellow government employee means that employee’s son is never seriously investigated.

  19. Allow me to point out that THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A GUNSHOW “LOOPHOLE”, and there never has been.

    The same laws for firearm sales apply at gunshows as anywhere else, and always have.

    Usually when gun-banners talk about the the so-called gun show “loophole” they’re talking about the fact that many States don’t require registration or background checks for sales of guns within a State between in-state residents.

    But its still illegal for felons to purchase or possess guns, even in these states. And of course the same sale that is legal in someone’s living room also happens to be legal at a gunshow.

    Anyone who wants to buy a new gun from a dealer at a gunshow has to go through the same NICS check as if he bought the gun at a gunstore.

  20. Interesting wording about the background check improvements.

    We should provide an instant, accurate, comprehensive and consistent system for background checks to sellers who want to do the right thing, and make sure that criminals can’t escape it.

    Emphasis mine. Not “all sellers”, but “sellers who want to do the right thing”. That’s an admission that you can’t stop private sales…

  21. I agree that President Obama is trying to keep a low profile on this issue, so as to get through the 2012 elections. (He’s inexperienced and unprincipled, but he’s no dummy. 2nd-Amendment issues were instrumental in losing 2000 for Gore, and you can bet that he knows it.)

    The question is: will the President’s so-to-speak constituents let him keep a low profile? His most vocal supporters are also the ones screaming that the Gun-Show Loophole ™ will bring on the Apocalypse (although, amazingly, it hasn’t so far).

    Will they let him campaign for the Presidency while side-stepping their favorite pet issues? I don’t think they will. In fact, I very much hope not… and I look forward to enjoying the fireworks!

    Daniel in Brookline

  22. Sebastian
    I guess I was not explicit enough, but we are definitely in agreement.
    The anti-gun mob wants to take away our right to peaceably assemble so as to make us less effective politically.
    First thing to attack when trying to destroy any group is to hit at their social cohesion. Forbidding people to get together goes a long way toward that goal.

  23. Sometimes I can’t tell if we’re winning or not. I’m not kidding. These days I mostly feel like we are, but then I look at the UN stuff or the R’s who are gearing up to “beat” Obama in 2012 and I think, “man this doesn’t FEEL like winning…”

  24. The President vaguely supported an uncontroversial law that the NRA supported, and hints vaguely at a popular gun control meme, in a rambling editorial that’s mostly preemptive damage control about how wrong gun-rights advocates are to extrapolate support for strict gun control out of support for trivial gun control.

    I think it’s pretty clear he’s just trying to keep the crazy uncle dreaming about onerous burdens long enough to vote in the next election.

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