On Tuesday October 25 a new a requirement was issued by the federal government after the complication of Operation Fast and Furious in order to stop the steady flow of guns from being purchased and crossed over to Mexico.
The requirement is the collection of private information which includes birth dates, addresses, race, and gender if a buyer purchases two or more semi-automatic rifles bigger than .22 caliber within a span of five days.
Gun sellers in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas are required to take this information and submit it to the ATF. The ATF claims that this plan will work a lot faster since they will be able to track these gun sales immediately “rather than a multi-day effort to trace the weapons back through the manufacturer, to the seller and eventually the buyer.”
Arizona attorney Stephen Halbrook said that collecting this information from buyers is a privacy invasion and is not the appropriate way to stop the gun flow into Mexico. He said there’s an obvious need to deal with this certain problem, but violating people’s privacy is not the right way to go about it, and that they should use more “traditional law enforcement methods.”
The attorney for the National Shooting Sports Foundation that happens to be suing the ATF just like Halbrook, is concerned that this requirement now applies to 8,500 gun dealers within these four states and it’s unffair because many of these gun stores have no connection to the guns crossing the border whatsoever. He also says he believes that the government made this decision way too quickly “perhaps for political reasons.”
So it’s just a big mess because the government wants to do one thing and the gun sellers and attorneys want to do something different but they’re unsure what to do, and there is no compromise. It seems like nobody knows what they want, they have no set plan of action, no alternatives, it’s appraently something that is not being dealt with in an organized manner. The government is trying to save their own butts while gun sellers see it as an imposition on human rights by invading people’s privacy. All the while, guns are still heading towards Mexico, and the Mexican people are still being killed.
So even though the ATF is being sued by several people, it seems as if they are still going to try to follow through with this plan for now. It’s been said that “two investigations have already been opened in the short time that the new reporting has been required.”