Anti-gun researcher admits
background checks just first step

By Cam Edwards. June 7, 2022

While the current gun control talks in the Senate revolve around supposedly "modest" expansions of background checks and grants to states to establish "red flag" firearm seizure laws, gun control activists and anti-gun academics are making it clear that they won't be satisfied with any deal that is struck between Republicans and Democrats.

In a recent interview with New York magazine columnist Matt Steib, anti-gun researcher Daniel Webster of Johns Hopkins' Center for Gun Violence Prevention and Policy came out and all but admitted that even "universal background checks" don't serve as a much of a deterrent to violent criminals, and argued that the imposition of any background check law is just the first step towards other, even more draconian restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms.

Even if the policy makes it to the Senate floor, expanded background checks at the state level don't necessarily equate to lower homicide rates, according to Webster. "We do see filling that gap does significantly reduce gun trafficking," he says, noting that all background-check systems are not created equal. "What we find is when you couple comprehensive background checks with a licensing system is where you tend to see beneficial effects. Or in some cases you see beneficial effects when adding a waiting period to the background-check process. The long story short is that just doing the background check by itself only takes you so far."

That's sure not how the idea of expanding background checks is being pitched by gun control advocates in Congress, is it? The idea is generally presented as a "commonsense" solution all on its own, not something that requires even more restrictions on legal gun owners before we might see violent crime rates drop. It's all part of the gun control playbook, however: pass what you can, and then when that doesn't solve the problem, claim we need even more gun control laws to make a difference. .....


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