Letter: Universal background checks first step toward confiscating guns

April 16, 2013 

I would like to respond to Gordon Bopp's "Letter Best" (Tri-City Forum, March 31) in which he chastises the Kennewick City Council for opposing universal background checks to acquire firearms.

Currently, all purchasers of firearms from dealers who have a Federal Firearm License undergo a background check. This system is enforced by virtue of regular audits conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) wherein each firearm must be accounted for.

To enforce a universal background check, a comprehensive list of all firearms and their owners must be developed so an auditing agency (ATF?) may be able to verify that a gun owner has not disposed of a gun illegally. That is why gun owners are fighting so fiercely against such legislation. A comprehensive list of all guns is the beginning of gun confiscation. U.S. Sen. Diane Feinstein, D-Calif., has indicated repeatedly that this is the goal of the anti-gun movement currently under way.

In addition, Mr. Bopp states that only 4 percent of all gun violence is committed by people with mental illnesses. So how effective would a background checks be in preventing gun violence by people who are dangerously psychotic?

DENNIS CARLYLE, Kennewick

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