Leave it to the mainstream media to go the panic route over something that is not news and to screw it up as well. A recent story about sinister sounding “ghost guns” is heavy on histrionics but light on relevant facts.
From the story by Lindsey Bomnin:
A legal loophole means that anyone, including criminals, can order a so-called “ghost gun” off the web without a background check – a gun with no serial number that can’t be traced.
The guns are built from kits and arrive in pieces, so under existing law, when they’re shipped, they aren’t guns. When assembled by their buyers, they’re lethal – and legal.
First of all, there doesn’t need to be an adjective. Last time I checked there is no such thing as an “illegal loophole.” Second, thanks for the tip that firearms are “lethal.” We wouldn’t have known without this report. Third, people have been building personal guns for centuries. The idea that this is some new kind of phenomena is nonsense. Naturally, it is legal. Why shouldn’t it be?
Then comes the “scary” part:
Federal officials like Graham Barlowe, the resident agent in charge of the ATF’s Sacramento office, say the loophole is dangerous.
“People that could not pass a background check,” said Barlowe, “are purchasing these unfinished receiver kits and making firearms because they know that if they went to a gun store, they wouldn’t be able to pass a background check.”
Police say criminals are well aware of the availability of “ghost guns,” and they’ve been used in shootings across the country, from Maryland to California.
Jeff Rossen, NBC News national investigative correspondent, went online to see how easy it would be to order these gun kits. He quickly found dozens of websites offering the product, and ordered a rifle kit, which he had shipped to former ATF agent Rick Vasquez in Virginia.
Once again we are revisiting the ignorance of people and their understanding of what a loophole in the law allows. What a loophole does not do, is allow a person who is ineligible to purchase or possess a firearm, to acquire one legally. It does not exist.
“That’s wrong! People can go to gun shows and buy guns without a background check! So the loophole exists!”
Except for the part where as soon as an ineligible person takes possession of said firearm they are in violation of federal law and likely, state law.
Walmart took advantage of a legal loophole one time to build a facility in a Maryland town that didn’t want the retail giant to have a footprint. Dunkirk, MD put in place, code restrictions that limited the size of retail buildings to a maximum of 75,000 square feet. Walmart Superstores are 145,000 or greater, so the company got around the law by proposing the construction of two facilities on the same plot of land that was 75,000 square feet apiece. They were to share the same parking lot, but the buildings would have separate entrances, though, be placed right next to each other.
Walmart eventually scuttled the idea, but the point is to illustrate how a loophole works. There is no “ghost gun loophole” just as there is no “gun show loophole.”
Some day, the mainstream media will get this.