Require universal background checks for all gun purchases | COMMENTARY

Require universal background checks for all gun purchases | COMMENTARY

A video is played to honor the 17 victims of the tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School during a community commemoration event in Parkland, Florida on Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021. (John McCall/South Florida Sun Sentinel). Last Sunday marked a tragic anniversary. It was three years ago that a lone gunman shot and killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. President Joe Biden marked the date issuing a statement not only grieving for the loss of 14 children and 3 adults, but promising swift action to end “our epidemic of gun violence.” First on his list of proposals: Require background checks on all gun sales. That the measure topped the president’s agenda was likely no accident: It is surely the most common-sensical, broadly supported and easily accomplished gun safety reform imaginable. This month in Annapolis, the House of Delegates and Senate both voted to override Gov. Larry Hogan’s veto of legislation that accomplishes exactly that, requiring a background check for every gun sale, including rifles and shotguns, which have long been exempt from this requirement. To sell any gun in Maryland, you will, as of mid-March, have to go to a licensed dealer who, for “a reasonable fee,” will help you complete an instant federal background check to determine whether you’re a convicted felon, a domestic abuser or have demonstrated a serious mental health condition that makes you a danger to yourself or others and disqualifies you from purchasing a firearm. Considering the extraordinary […]

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