Good Intentions, Bad Law?

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56 Responses

  1. Avatar Burt Likko says:

    Is it wrong of me to think of I-591 & I-594 as a freeway interchange that might be in, say, western Massachusetts?

    I got as far as the summary front page before I read: “Reasonable Exceptions – background checks are not required for: … Loans for lawful hunting or sporting activities.” That sounds exactly like what you’re talking about.

    What the opponents are keying off of is in the actual text, which would add new RCW 9.41.010(25): “”Transfer” means the intended delivery of a firearm to another person without consideration of payment or promise of payment including, but not limited to, gifts and loans.” It goes on to describe that sort of “transfer” as requiring a background check under penalty of criminal prosecution, and that seems at variance with the ballot description.

    But reading further into new section 3, which would add a newsubchapter RCW 9.41, we learn in the new subchapter’s section 4 that:

    This section does not apply to: … (f) The temporary transfer of a firearm (i) between spouses or domestic partners; (ii) if the temporary transfer occurs, and the firearm is kept at all times, at an established shooting range authorized by the governing body of the jurisdiction in which such range is located; (iii) if the temporary transfer occurs and the transferee’s possession of the firearm is exclusively at a lawful organized competition involving the use of a firearm, or while participating in or practicing for a performance by an organized group that uses firearms as a part of the performance; (iv) to a person who is under eighteen years of age for lawful hunting, sporting, or educational purposes while under the direct supervision and control of a responsible adult who is not prohibited from possessing firearms; or (v) while hunting if the hunting is legal in all places where the person to whom the firearm is transferred possesses the firearm and the person to whom the firearm is transferred has completed all training and holds all licenses or permits required for such hunting, provided that any temporary transfer allowed by this subsection is permitted only if the person to whom the firearm is transferred is not prohibited from possessing firearms under state or federal law … .

    So it looks like section 3(4)(f)(ii-v) does indeed provide an exception for the brief sharing of weapons between hunting buddies or at the range.

    So the ballot description is vindicated: if I-594 passes, you’ll still be able to do short-term exchanges with friends at the range to try their weapons out, without needing to do background checks on each other. Which is good, because if you had to run background checks on all your friends, you might learn things about your friends of which in retrospect, you’d wish you’d have remained ignorant.Report

    • I’m not so sure this answers MRS’ concerns, which I take to be that he is worried that this prohibits this type of borrowing and lending at informal (ie, unlicensed or unestablished) shooting ranges. From the language of the statute, it seems to me that it does in fact require a background check in those situations, or at minimum does not exempt that.

      Additionally, the language about hunting loans seems quite burdensome and also leaves the owner on the hook if the recipient negligently trespasses onto property where hunting is prohibited, even if the recipient causes no actual harm.

      By burdensome, I’m referring to the fact that the owner is on the hook for failure to conduct a background check if it turns out that the recipient is either insufficiently trained, lacks an appropriate hunting license, or is firearms-disabled (ie, would fail a federal background check). It’s easy to say that this just means the owner should try to verify the recipient’s training, hunting license, and lack of firearms disability before lending the firearm out. But there’s only one way of doing the first of those, and only two ways of doing the last: (1) just asking the person whether they’re trained, have a valid license, and are firearms-disabled; or (2) for the firearms disability, having to go to a licensed dealer to have them run a full-scale background check, which is exactly MRS’ concern.

      But if the owner only does (1), and it turns out the person lacked adequate training, a proper hunting license (though presumably it’s easier to properly verify a hunting license), or is firearms-disabled, then the owner is in violation of this law, even if the recipient does everything right and causes no harm while in possession of the firearm. As a practical matter, this type of mistake error can happen pretty easily – obviously, the recipient could just lie to the owner, thereby putting the owner strictly in violation of the law. More than that, you don’t even need the recipient to act nefariously for the owner to lose the exemption – it’s not uncommon for people under a firearms-disability to be unaware that their conviction for a relatively minor offense rendered them firearms-disabled, and obviously people overestimate their training all the time.

      Then, of course, you have the problem where the exemption is lost if the recipient trespasses onto land where hunting is prohibited, whether intentionally or negligently, even if the recipient otherwise acts responsibly and causes no harm. This, again, is strict liability for the owner; worse,there’s not anything the owner can do to prevent it from happening.

      These are just unrealistic expectations unless you’re hoping to prevent this kind of casual lending for hunting purposes from occurring at all.

      The problems with the limitations on the hunting exemption could easily enough be fixed just by inserting the phrase “if the owner makes a reasonable and good faith attempt to verify that….”

      The problems with the lack of an exemption for an informal shooting range are not so easy to fix, and I doubt the referendum’s sponsor would be willing to work with gun owners on that item in any event, as I expect that the sponsors view discouraging informal shooting ranges as very much a feature rather than a bug.Report

      • Avatar Burt Likko says:

        Trespass is a strict liability offense, is it not? So it doesn’t matter whether the trespass was negligent or intentional. If you’re on my land, you’re on my land and you shouldn’t be there and you’re responsible for any harm you cause while you’re there (say, by shooting into my tree and killing it when I haven’t given you permission to be there and thus assumed the risk).

        But that’s an issue of tort liability to a third party. We’re talking about whether or not this law wold criminalize handing your weapon to me to shoot a few rounds, and then me giving it back, on an informal basis and on an informal range. That’s entirely reasonable conduct and we all want there to be room in the law to allow for that. And it seems to me that section 3(4)(f)(ii-v), which I quoted at length above, does do that. Why am I wrong?

        I didn’t examine the question of the informal range. That seems a separate issue from the short-term swap of weapons common among gun owners and the law attaches criminal liability upon a “transfer.”Report

      • (1) The thing is that the range exemption only applies when inside an “established range authorized by the governing body.” From what MRS is saying, shooting in the wilderness is a very common thing, and currently also quite legal. However, I don’t think we could reasonably say that the places where this type of shooting occurs meet the definition of an “established range authorized by the governing body.” From what MRS is saying, they’re basically just temporary clearings in the wilderness.

        (2) While the idea of strict liability for trespass is obviously an old one, one of the problems here is that this would seem to create criminal liability for failure to conduct a background check if someone else happens to negligently trespass while in possession of a firearm you lent. I’m not even a gun owner, and I have a significant problem with the notion of strict liability for someone else’s subsequent strict liability offense. If I were a gun owner, I’d be pretty vehement in my opposition to that. What’s more, whether or not a background check is conducted has absolutely nothing to do with whether the loanee subsequently trespasses, yet failure to conduct a background check is precisely the crime that the owner would be charged with even if the loanee would have passed any background check.

        3. Whether or not it’s good public policy to impose strict criminal liability on hunters if they choose not to conduct a background check and it turns out that the loanee was under a firearms disability, it’s a policy that gun owners themselves would understandably find pretty objectionable and potentially burdensome because of its tendency to force a significant change in the social nature of hunting – trading guns with a new hunting buddy becomes a potentially criminal act unless you conduct a background check because of the possibility that the hunting buddy misunderstands (or lies to you about) his firearms eligibility, hunting license, or level of training. I suppose “potential criminal liability” is a better exemption than “definite criminal liability (ie, no exemption at all),” but not as much as you’d expect since whether or not that potential liability arises is essentially a crapshoot.

        Basically, what the referendum says is that there’s strict liability for failing to conduct a background check when trading guns with a firearms-disabled person, but no strict liability for failing to conduct a background check on a person who is not firearms-disabled. Which sounds simple enough until you realize that the only way to know with any kind of certainty whether someone is firearms-disabled is by conducting a background check. Keep in mind also that, according to MRS, what we’re often talking about here isn’t really even a loan, but is instead a momentary “swap,” in which the loanee is momentarily giving up a firearm in exchange for the lender’s firearm. Even if the loanee turns out to be firearms-disabled in those circumstances, the situation isn’t even conceivably more dangerous than it was prior to the swap – it’s not ordinarily going to make a difference whether the loanee is shooting the firearm he brought or the firearm he swapped for, as he can cause just as much trouble in that circumstance with his shotgun as he can with your AR-15, or vice versa.

        The other thing here is that the fix I suggest above that would presumably appease gun owners’ concerns here would actually better accomplish the referendum’s goals. Since you’re just as liable if you fail to inquire about the loanee’s training, licensing, and firearms disability as you are if you do make that inquiry, there’s little incentive to make that inquiry – you’re either going to roll the dice that your new hunting buddy is allowed to possess firearms or, far less likely, you’re not going to swap with him at all. But if you change the exemption so that it applies if and only if you make a reasonable and good faith (but still casual) inquiry, then there’s tons of incentive to at least ask the right questions before swapping.Report

      • Avatar Burt Likko says:

        Okay, I see that now. I’d be happy to sign off on Brother Mark’s proposed amendment, then (were I a Washington legislator or proponent of the initiative).Report

      • Avatar Jim Heffman says:

        Just to pile on:

        “Trespass is a strict liability offense, is it not? ”

        As Mark points out, though, the proposed law is about criminal penalties, not tortuous infringement. If I cut through Old Man Winters’s yard, the police do not smash down my door and flashbang my son and shoot my dog.Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:

        One of the things that really bugged me about a lot of this is there is no exemption for people with concealed carry permits.

        Me & my buddy both have carry permits. We have to go through a considerable background check in order to get them, and they are revoked if you get into trouble.

        If I ask to see a guys CPL, & he can produce one that matches his DL, then I should be golden with regard to a temporary transfer (good faith effort & all that).Report

      • @mad-rocket-scientist That’s a good point, as well – displaying a valid CCW permit is close to equivalent to showing that you’ve passed a daily background check, since it seems like the state forces you to surrender the permit upon conviction of a revocable offense, and it seems like offenses that warrant revocation are broader than offenses that warrant being made firearms disabled. I suppose in theory that one might be able to avoid surrendering the CCW permit if convicted of a revocable offense while traveling outside the state, but you would have a better idea on that than I.Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:

        The state does require one to surrender the permit if suspended or revoked.

        From the back of my CPL:

        “You must have your [CPL] in your immediate possession at all times that you are required by law to have a CPL, and you must display it upon demand to any police officer or to any other person when & if required by law to do so. Failure to do so is a class 1 civil infraction, and you will be punished accordingly under RCW 7.80.

        Basically, if the man wants to see my permit, I had better be able to produce it. I don’t think, “I lost it”, is a valid excuse.Report

    • Avatar Jim Heffman says:

      I don’t think that helps, actually. The proposed text allows exceptions at an “established shooting range authorized by [a] governing body” or “a lawful organized competition”, and what MRS describes sounds like “a bunch of guys out in the woods shooting guns”.Report

    • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:

      BTW, Mark & Burt, thank you for taking the time to read it & parse it.

      I appreciate it, and I think I will have to vote against it. I should not face arrest & fines for a simple act that causes no harm.Report

  2. Avatar Damon says:

    You may safely assume that, regardless of actual wording, the intent is to ratchet up the pressure on gun owners. Then the anti gunners will work to alter the original wording, thus ratcheting up once again…and again…Report

    • Avatar morat20 says:

      We should vote not on this law, but on a future law! Down with this law, for in 20 years another law may come up for a vote!

      Is paranoia like a requirement for being hugely pro-gun? I mean, in actual reality it’s coming up aces for gun owners in America. Fewer and fewer restrictions, tons of new open carry laws, self-defense laws that are bordering on licenses to kill, and even shooting up a school won’t move America back to the bad old days of 15 years ago. Or change anything, in fact.

      Yet the paranoia grows deeper. It’s like owning a gun makes you fearful. Maybe it’s only people on the internet. I mean, the gun owners I know don’t seem to live in a defense crouch, cradling their gun and mumbling “my precious” and snarling at anyone nearby, afraid their guns might be taken.

      None of them hoarded weapons and ammo when Obama was elected or re-elected either, so maybe they’re the crazy ones.Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:


        Not exactly a convincing argument here. If, as it has been suggested, this law would criminalize common & harmless behavior if it happens outside of a very narrow time & place exception, then that is a problem.

        And as I said below, if passed, the law is enforced as written for a minimum of two years before gun owners could lobby for a change.

        Even our state police organizations oppose this because of the administrative burden & the potential for people to get in trouble over nothing.

        And all of this despite a lack of solid evidence that universal background checks make a difference in crime rates.Report

      • Avatar morat20 says:

        His entire post was “Disregard the law, assume evil intent on behalf of anti-gunners, who obviously view this law as a way to get rid of guns”.

        Not bad drafting, not unexpected intent, but paranoia. They’re out to get his guns. (Even though, in fact, even at it’s worst this law won’t take his guns — it’d just be a real PITA on loaning them. And as someone who borrows his father-in-law’s guns when we go shooting, if the actual effect is to ban that, then yep — badly written).

        I wasn’t speaking of the law, but the paranoid tone. One that seems increasingly common in gun owners (at least those online) even as laws about owning guns get looser. You’d think it was going the other way, to hear them talk. (That’s not even getting into the stockpiling and ‘Obama gonna get my guns!’ stuff)Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:

        Oh, sorry, my bad, you weren’t talking to me.Report

      • Avatar morat20 says:

        Yeah, no. I get your concern. I mean, maybe it’s a bad idea to have unlicensed shooting areas, but that should be a whole separate discussion.

        In any case, while I’d like to say “Dude, who would prosecute for that? That’s obviously not the intent of the law”, well — there are people happy to use the letter against the spirit for anything, and better drafting of the law would help.

        I’m pretty confidant the situation you describe is NOT the intent of the law for starters, which makes prosecution unlikely, and I think the law in total would make it very difficult to win such a prosecution as it clarifies the intent even if it doesn’t explicitly cover this particular. (Which makes it even less likely for someone to try to prosecute it).

        But I’m all for writing a better, more clear law or rule whenever possible.Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:

        I’m pretty confidant the situation you describe is NOT the intent of the law for starters, which makes prosecution unlikely, and I think the law in total would make it very difficult to win such a prosecution as it clarifies the intent even if it doesn’t explicitly cover this particular. (Which makes it even less likely for someone to try to prosecute it)

        I am, in the spirit of this forum, granting the authors of the law a very charitable reading & not assuming ill-intent, but rather just a profound ignorance regarding the culture they wish to regulate.

        That said, you may be write that the spirit will win out, but some poor schmuck should not have to risk the consequences of making the courts be explicit about it when some better language would remove the ambiguity.Report

      • Avatar Jim Heffman says:

        “I’m pretty confidant the situation you describe is NOT the intent of the law for starters”

        I’m pretty confident that the people who wrote the CPSIA did not intend to destroy the youth ATV industry, but that happened anyway.Report

      • Avatar zic says:

        This reminds me of the unsung accomplishment of ACA. In the days pre-ACA, when we held a discussion about health insurance, we were often talking about different systems, not much different than conversations about legal jurisdiction, and how the rules depend on where you are. Now, we are at least able to discuss it from a national perspective. Not having to define which of 50+ sets of rules are being discussed is most helpful.

        /total statist comment. Don’t see that word so much around here anymore.Report

      • Avatar notme says:


        Remember the assault weapons ban? It was passed even though more folks are killed with handguns or hammers. The guns were banned in part on aesthetic features that didn’t have anything with their ability to shoot, like a bayonet lug or a flash hider. Even after the failure of the ban to make a difference, which even the NYT recently recognized, some liberal still want to re-impose the ban. So you really have to ask why 2nd amendment supporters don’t trust liberals?

      • Avatar Damon says:

        “Is paranoia like a requirement for being hugely pro-gun?”

        Nah, but you tend to get suspicious of stuff like this if you pay attention for any length of time to what the anti gunners are saying and trying to do.Report

      • Avatar morat20 says:

        Nah, but you tend to get suspicious of stuff like this if you pay attention for any length of time to what the anti gunners are saying and trying to do.

        Again: Why do you care? They’ve lost. In the wake of a school shooting that killed dozens of kids, they couldn’t so much as roll the clock back 10 years. Open carry and concealed carry laws have blossomed like deadly little flowers, and George Zimmerman stalks the land, lawfully waving his gun at motorists, free as a bird.

        Stand Your Ground laws exist in what, half the states now? The Supreme Court overturned a century of precedent in favor of gun-owners.

        If they can’t even reinstate the assault weapons ban (and frankly, didn’t even TRY) after kids got gunned down, they’re impotent.

        Continued paranoia on that front is just weird. I get “vigilance”, but the defensive “we’re an outnumbered minority on the verge of destruction” is, well….out of line with actual facts. It’s like watching Christians in America whine how they’re a persecuted minority, only creepier.Report

    • Avatar James Hanley says:

      We should vote not on this law, but on a future law!

      Isn’t that how many liberals managed to swallow Obamacare, on the belief that it’s a first step, and will lead to a better healthcare law in the future?

      More seriously, prospective voting is rather normal, and not obviously invalid.Report

      • Avatar Glyph says:

        Yeah, it seems to me that if politics is an iterative game (that ideally replaces war as a game) then there are times you block a minor move not because that move itself would be fatal to your endgame, but because it would potentially put your opponents in a relatively better position (or you in a worse one) later.

        Haven’t you ever played Scrabble or chess?

        Sometimes you deliver a decisive killing blow, sometimes you avoid one; but mostly you have a bunch of small wins and/or denials.Report

      • Avatar morat20 says:

        Isn’t that how many liberals managed to swallow Obamacare, on the belief that it’s a first step, and will lead to a better healthcare law in the future?
        No, they swallowed it because it was better than the status quo. That is, the ACA would lead to better healthcare in of itself. Maybe not optimum healthcare, maybe not the bill they wanted, but between “what we have” and “what’s on the table” they went with door number 2.

        Damon’s indulging in a slippery slope fallacy. Each step, iteratively, needs to be judged on it’s own merits. Judging THIS law based on some other, entirely different law in the future, is pretty dumb.

        Frankly, anything relying on slippery slope logic should be distrusted from the get-go, because it’s such a pernicious fallacy. Doubly so for something like this, which occurs in the context of a massive, nation-wide loosening of gun laws.

        I’m having a hard time thinking slippery slope might be valid here, when the facts on the ground are moving uphill, not down.Report

      • Avatar Jim Heffman says:

        Morat, there were gallons of electronic ink spilled convincing us that it didn’t matter about how this-or-that part of the PPACA was garbage because it would get fixed later. No less a personage than Nancy Pelosi said that we needed to pass the bill first and only later would we figure out how to actually fix healthcare.

        “anything relying on slippery slope logic”

        Not all predictions are slippery slope fallacies. Some are inductive conclusions based on past experience.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley says:

        Jim Heffman,

        No less a personage than Nancy Pelosi said that we needed to pass the bill first and only later would we figure out how to actually fix healthcare.

        I think you’re right that ACA was very much sold as a “one step closer” and “we’ll fix any problems later” bill. But you are badly misrepresenting what Pelosi said, and I, if perhaps no one else among ACA skeptics, am really sick and fishing tired of the on-going perversions of her very sensible statement. As I said on this site a few weeks ago, I think people’s responses to her statement are a good way to distinguish between those who understand our lawmaking process and those who don’t.Report

      • Avatar notme says:

        Don’t forget the lie that we could keep you could keep your healthcare, that helped support for the ACA. I’ve never heard a pol tell us that a law had to be passed so we could see what was in itReport

      • Avatar Kim says:

        stupid liberals, maybe. I swallowed the law on the basis of “this’ll get rid of the cretins in the Republican party” (at least make them seem so stupidly out of touch that they get voted out).Report

      • Avatar Jim Heffman says:

        Ah, I see. So she actually did say those words, but, you see, we need to keep the context in mind, we need the proper interpretation, it’s important to understand what she actually meant, oh shit hold on a Republican just said something that sounds ridiculous and needs to be taken at face value!Report

    • Avatar LWA says:


      That is our intent.

      We intend to ratchet up the pressure, gradually, but more and more, until one day you will only be able to tell your grandchildren about a time in America when 9 year old girls were allowed to shoot machine guns, and people went to church with pump action shotguns slung over their shoulders.

      Cry, beloved country.Report

      • Avatar Jaybird says:

        Darren Wilson is the only type of person who should own a gun.Report

      • Avatar Burt Likko says:

        Why do you hate America so, @lwa ? Do you hate us for our freedoms?Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw says:


        I’d support not letting local police use guns either.

        Can you give me an example of anytime someone was able to shoot a law enforcement officer and successfully claim it was self-defense and not go to prison?Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:


        I actually found a number of examples from recently & posted them in a previous thread (one of the Ferguson discussions, I believe).Report

      • Avatar morat20 says:

        Darren Wilson is the only type of person who should own a gun.
        For some reason I read that initially as “Brian Wilson” and was very, very confused.

        He’s a good song-writer, but he wouldn’t make my top ten list of “Only Armed Man in America”. (Although for the record, my vote for ‘If only one guy ever in the world could have a gun” would go to Daniel Inouye or Audie Murphy….or, if fictional counts, Roland. Because a gunslinger needs a gun)Report

      • Avatar Citizen says:

        Roland was my choice as wellReport

  3. Avatar Kim says:

    It seems like informal gun pits aren’t covered in the law, but if you lobbied, they might be (depending on how many people use them).Report

    • As I understand, most states that allow referenda pretty severely limit the legislature’s ability to amend the laws created by passed referenda. Otherwise, the legislature can just effectively undo the referendum almost as soon as it passes. Presumably the reason most referenda (other than those required by a state constitution) reach the ballot and pass is because the legislature has first refused or failed to pass a similar law, so giving it the ability to significantly modify the referendum once it passed would defeat the entire purpose.Report

    • Avatar Citizen says:

      There will soon be (if not already) environmental considerations leveraged against informal/private ranges. Most ranges will be corporate owned servicing law enforcement and contractors in mid-sized cities.Report

  4. Avatar Wardsmith says:

    The biggest and most glaring flaw in this law as proposed is there is NO way for a private citizen to perform a legitimate background check on another and there is no provision in this crap referendum to enable same. Even the authors have admitted this since their real goal is getting rid of legitimate gun ownership (criminals will of course continue doing what they do while a whole new class of previously law abiding tax paying citizens will become criminals over time)Report

    • Avatar Kim says:

      Yeah, if you need to contact the database, there should be an app for that (yes, that won’t fix no cell reception, but tough turkey). If it costs money, so what?Report

    • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:

      Once upon a time, there was a level of FFL that was only allowed to do NICS checks (could not sell a gun, but could run a check). Not sure why those don’t exist anymore.Report

      • Avatar Wardsmith says:

        Not sure why those don’t exist anymore.

        Because one thing we can count on from bunglecrats is making a clusterfluck out of whatever they touch.Report

      • Avatar morat20 says:

        At a guess — NRA lobbying. Lots of rather ordinary federal and state functions have this gap where guns are concerned, and every case seems to boil down to NRA lobbying.Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:


        I asked someone who knows more about such things than I, I’ll let you know when he gets back to me.

        I’m not so inclined to blame the NRA because (IIRC) the NRA initially supported background checks & wanted the program to be open & easy to access.Report

      • Avatar morat20 says:

        I’m not so inclined to blame the NRA because (IIRC) the NRA initially supported background checks & wanted the program to be open & easy to access

        Yes, but then they stopped. And then went the other way. At extreme high speed. Pedal to the metal and all that. The NRA these days opposes background checks more or less entirely, so frankly I’d not be surprised at all if they tried to deep-six a program that made it convenient. People generally don’t get excited to repeal something convenient and easy.

        Which is why I suspect the NRA, because they’ve got a history (oh, late 80s early 90s was when I recall it settling in) of such things. (The most obnoxious example is the stuff involving research money). *sigh*. I much preferred them when they were a lobby for gun owners, not gun makers.

        Really depends more on when it changed. Frankly, the gun-control side just flat out gave up over a decade ago. They’ve literally stopped trying and what little energy they have is half-hearted attempts at maintaining the status quo.Report

      • Avatar Kim says:

        It says something when it’s easier to call in the Secret Service than to use the ATF to take down fucking gun smugglers, doesn’t it?Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:

        The BATFE has managed to do more damage to gun control than anyone, I think. Everytime the federal government makes changes to gun laws, the groan you hear from the shooting community is mostly due to knowing that they’ll have to deal with the a-holes at the ATF again, who have developed a reputation for being vague & ambiguous with regulatory rulings & guidelines, while also being hardheaded & merciless with enforcement (as an example, they demand near perfection for filling out a Form 4473,which has something close to 200 fields & checkboxes that need to be filled in exactly to specification, or they count it against the dealer; e.g. when I lived in Snohomish County, it was common for everyone to abbreviate Snohomish to just SNO, except on the 4473, where you had to spell it out in the tiny field they provide). It’s asinine detail enforcement like that that gives dealers & owners heartburn.

        And can we please dispense with the tired canard that the NRA is a lobby for gun makers. They lobby for gun owners, since that is where 90% of their operating budget comes from.Report

      • Avatar Mad Rocket Scientist says:

        I just heard back from a lawyer who does a lot of work with gun laws, and he said the FFL program has been pretty much exactly the same since it’s inception in 1968.

        I was probably thinking of people with Curios & Relics FFLs. Those are easy to get, & I think they can do NICS checks, but since the ATF has made the paperwork requirements so stringent, there is no real value in such license holders offering that service to others.Report