Friday, August 10, 2012

With No Limit, Virginia Gun Sales Shoot Through Roof

In the wake of the mass shootings in Colorado and Wisconsin, the headline of this post is not something to make one warm and fuzzy.  Yet, thanks to Governor Bob"Taliban Bob" McDonnell and the GOP controlled General Assembly, there is no limit on the number of guns one can legally purchase, and the headline I used is straight from the Virginian Pilot.  And as police in New York and other states know, these guns often do not stay in Virginia.  Now, once again, Virginia will likely be the main source of guns used in many states to commit crimes.  I find it disgusted and frightening since the Colorado and Wisconsin murders show how easy it is for nutcases to "legally purchase" guns.  Guns that no law abiding citizen needs to be stockpiling.   Knowing that Virginia has over 30 or so KKK and white supremacy groups doesn't make me fell any better.  Here are highlights from the Pilot article: 

Firearms have been flying off store shelves all year in Virginia, but last month - the first in 20 years that didn't limit buyers to one handgun - saw the most sales yet.  Background checks for firearms transactions spiked accordingly. In July, 29,072 checks were conducted by the Virginia State Police, a 29 percent increase over the same month last year.

The actual number of guns sold could be much higher. Background checks are required only for firearms bought from licensed dealers, and one check is good for any number of guns, as long as they're part of the same transaction.

That's what upsets those who supported Virginia's one-handgun-a-month restriction. When the law was passed in 1993, the state was known as an easy mark for gun traffickers - a place where the bad guys could get unlimited weapons directly from law-abiding dealers simply by sending in a purchaser who could pass a background check.

Guns from Virginia have been a plague in neighboring states. On Wednesday night, a police officer was shot in New York City with a 9mm Ruger that's been traced to a gun shop in the commonwealth.  "Unfortunately, that's just the latest tragedy," said John Feinblatt, chief policy adviser to Mayor Michael Bloomberg. "It's a pattern. Virginia is the top out-of-state source for crime guns in New York City. By repealing that law, you just took a step backwards."

Some closest to bloodshed remain unconvinced. Families and survivors of the Virginia Tech massacre of 2007 fought to keep the handgun limit, calling its end a "sad day."  Feinblatt, in New York, agrees.
"Making it easier for guns to fall into the hands of criminals, the mentally ill and drug addicts is a lethal decision," he said.

It's all typical of the Virginia GOP and McDonnell - whose other nick name is "Governor Ultrasound" - who care nothing about average voters and citizens and only seek to kiss the asses of far right fanatics and religious extremists. Once again, I hate living in this state where ignorance and bigotry pass for statesmenship and political leadership.

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