Gun sellers held accountable?

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The gun shops and sellers should be held accountable for whom they sell their product to, if they’re not following the law and doing their job.

At 18, Julius Burton could not legally buy a gun, so he paid an acquaintance to accompany him to Badger Guns, in Milwaukee, a place that had a reputation for the ease of getting a gun.

… Julius Burton said in testimony from prison, where he is serving 80 years for attempted murder, “everyone knew” Badger was the place to get a gun. In 2011, two years after the sale to Mr. Burton, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives rescinded Badger’s license. (New York Times)

So, everyone knew this shop was like the U.S. border, easily penetrated. Badger Guns, the clerk and the owner should be held accountable for the sale that led to two police officers being shot in the face. Maybe they’ll be more careful about their clientele. About who is filling out the application. Is it the actual buyer or a friend?

Mr. Burton pointed to a Taurus semiautomatic pistol and said, “That’s the one I want,” according to surveillance video from that day in 2009 and trial testimony. Then he helped his friend, who was struggling to fill out a two-page form. A hovering store clerk helped as well, showing the friend how to correct mistakes and ensure he was listed as the buyer. (New York Times)

So, the friend and the clerk helped this person fill out the application. If you cannot fill out the two-page application on your own, maybe you shouldn’t have a gun …

It’s a fine line, because the gun shops have to be careful not to discriminate, or they’ll have an entirely different problem on their hands, but follow the existing laws. We expect people are being vetted, being looked at, and not just handed a gun. Isn’t that the point of the application?

Let’s relate this to a bartender or the establishment itself. They can’t keep serving an intoxicated person without potential consequences. The bartender can lose his job and his certification to serve, and the establishment could lose their liquor license. Essentially, both losing their livelihoods, and possibly slapped with civil lawsuits. They are held accountable for the product they sell, and we’re talking about alchohol.

Badger Guns, had a long history of legal violations, official warnings and machinations to prevent the revocation of its firearms license, as The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has described in a series of reports. A second lawsuit against the store is pending in Milwaukee, also involving a weapon that was used to shoot police officers. (New York Times)

This example goes to the point of not needing more gun laws, but enforcing the gun laws already in existence, and making these shops accountable, and held to the law. What is the point of filling out the forms? Isn’t this the vetting process? Don’t we fully expect that when we fill out those forms for purchasing a weapon, that someone is checking us out? Isn’t this the entire point? If not, skip the application, and just sell the gun as if it’s a hammer from the local hardware store.

It seems this particular gun shop, Badger Guns, was more interested in their bottom line, their profit, rather than following the law, or just simply paying attention.

So, hit them where it hurts, right in the wallet! Revoke their firearms license. Hold them accountable for the product they sell!

 (Photo above: Badger Guns in West Milwaukee, WI — YouTube video screen shot)