White House Describes DOJ’s Universal Background Check Rule as ‘Life-Saving’

The White House released a Fact Sheet on the universal background check rule announced by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) Thursday, describing the rule as “life-saving.”

Breitbart News reported the purpose of the rule puts the onus on gun owners, forcing them to prove they are not gun dealers before selling a gun without a background check.

The White House indicated the proposed universal background check rule was initiated by an executive order from President Joe Biden.

Instead of just selling a gun to a neighbor or co-worker, as Americans have done since the Second Amendment was ratified in 1791, the proposed rule sets forward criteria that the would-be seller must first weigh whether the sale puts them in the category of licensed gun dealer.

The White House explained:

If you have a gun you no longer need, and you want to sell it to your family member, you do not need a license to sell it. If you buy and sell curios or relics or “collectible” personal firearms as a hobby, again, you do not need a license. But, if you are offering a firearm for sale to make money, and telling a customer that you can purchase and sell him additional firearms, you would presumptively need a license—and need to run background checks. The same is true if you repetitively offer for resale firearms within 30 days of when you purchased them. The proposed rule includes a number of other situations where, in civil and administrative proceedings and absent reliable evidence to the contrary, it will be presumed that you need a license.

The White House did not mention that nearly every high profile shooter of the last 16 years got his guns at retail via a background check. In other words, private sales are not the go-to supply source for mass shooters and targeting private sales misses the mark.

Here is a short list of some of the high profile shooters who got their guns via background checks:

  • Jacksonville Dollar General attacker (August 26, 2023)
  • Uvalde School attacker (May 24, 2022)
  • Buffalo grocery attacker (May 14, 2022)
  • Indianapolis FedEx attacker (April 15, 2021)
  • Atlanta-area attacker (March 16, 2021)
  • Parkland high school attacker (February 14, 2018)
  • Texas church attacker (November 5, 2017)
  • Las Vegas attacker (October 1, 2017)
  • Alexandria attacker (June 14, 2017)
  • Orlando attacker (June 12, 2016)
  • UCLA gunman (June 1, 2016)
  • San Bernardino attackers (December 2, 2015)
  • Colorado Springs attacker (October 31, 2015)
  • Umpqua Community College attacker (October 1, 2015)
  • Alison Parker’s attacker (August 26, 2015)
  • Lafayette movie theater attacker (July 23, 2015)
  • Chattanooga attacker (July 16, 2015)
  • Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal attacker (Jun 17, 2015)
  • Muhammad Cartoon Contest attackers (May 3, 2015)
  • Las Vegas cop killers (June 9, 2014)
  • Santa Barbara attacker (May 23, 2014)
  • Fort Hood attacker (April 2, 2014)
  • Arapahoe High School attacker (December 13, 2013)
  • D.C. Navy Yard attacker (September 16, 2013)
  • Aurora movie theater attacker (July 20, 2012)
  • Gabby Giffords’ attacker (January 8, 2011)
  • Fort Hood attacker (November 5, 2009)
  • Northern Illinois University attacker (February 14, 2008)
  • Virginia Tech attacker (April 16, 2007).

So, high profile shooters during the last 16 years have overwhelmingly gotten their guns at retail via background checks yet the White House claims executive action to enact background checks on private sales is a “live saving” endeavor.

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio and a Turning Point USA Ambassador. He was a Visiting Fellow at the Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal in 2010, a speaker at the 2023 Western Conservative Summit, and he holds a Ph.D. in Military History, with a focus on the Vietnam War (brown water navy), U.S. Navy since Inception, the Civil War, and Early Modern Europe. Follow him on Instagram: @awr_hawkins. You can sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange. Reach him directly at awrhawkins@breitbart.com.

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