Brady Launches New Website Smearing Gun Industry

girl AR-15 gun shop NRA-ILA
We all knew who the finger-pointers and tattletales were in junior high school. A disproportionate number of them, it seems, now populate America’s anti-gun lobby. IMG NRA-ILA

U.S.A. -(AmmoLand.com)- We all knew who the finger-pointers and tattletales were in junior high school. A disproportionate number of them, it seems, now populate America’s anti-gun lobby.

The oft-rebranded gun control organization currently calling itself Brady United Against Gun Violence (Brady) launched a website this week called The Gun Store Transparency Project.

This site is the result of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) litigation Brady engaged in against the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to obtain certain ATF reports from inspections of Federal Firearm Licensees. Brady is now making those reports available to the public.

These reports, however, are not a random or representative sampling of ATF’s inspection efforts but contain only those “in which the ATF issued an FFL a Warning Letter or more severe remedy … .”

In other words, the site completely ignores any inspection report — which in 2020 comprised over 60% of them — that did not result in findings of violations or sanctions.

Brady claims the purpose of the website is so “the American public will no longer be kept in the dark about businesses that contribute to gun violence in their communities, and whether federal authorities are failing to hold them accountable.”

But is every business cataloged on the site “contributing to gun violence in their communities” simply because it was found, in some fashion, to be in non-compliance with the reams of federal laws and regulations that apply to licensed gun sellers?

The answer, of course, is no.

There is no mystery to which sorts of violations will land an FFL in serious trouble with ATF. The agency publishes them on its own website:

In addition to a refusal to allow an IOI to conduct an inspection, each of the following violations, absent extraordinary circumstances, will also result in ATF issuing a notice of revocation:

    • Transferring a firearm to a prohibited person
    • Failing to conduct a required background check
    • Falsifying records
    • Failing to respond to a trace request

These are the sorts of violations that pose the most obvious risk of a firearm falling into dangerous hands or that could impede law enforcement authorities from conducting a legitimate regulatory or criminal investigation.

None of these, however, appear on the ATF’s list of the 10 “most frequently cited violations during ATF firearms inspections” in 2020.

Instead, these “violations” are mostly the types of bookkeeping errors that are likely to occur in any context in which transactions are subject to a highly bureaucratic process that involves multiple ledger entries, forms, requirements for the production and recording of identification, and database inquiries.

Examples of the most common “violations,” according to the ATF, include “[f]ailure to complete forms as prescribed” and missing signatures or dates.

Indeed, one of the reasons the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) itself doesn’t always work as intended is because the millions of mostly government forms and computer entries on which it relies are themselves commonly incomplete, ambiguous, or simply erroneous.

This is why the ATF inspection process is not always or even usually a harshly punitive endeavor. Rather, it can also serve to help these heavily regulated businesses identify areas of operation or processes that need to be improved. The process, for example, includes a post-inspection conference so the FFL has an opportunity to respond to the alleged violations, initiate corrective actions, ask questions, and review relevant federal firearms laws and regulations with the inspectors.

This is also why the NRA supported the landmark Firearms Owners Protection Act in 1986, which ensured that the ATF inspection process could not be abused by anti-gun administrations simply to reduce the number of FFLs by any means possible.

To some degree, the process is similar to a student’s report card, which can help with self-assessment and identify areas in need of improvement. But, just as academic report cards are not necessarily or usually about finding a pretext to kick the student out of school, ATF compliance inspections are not necessarily or usually aimed at shutting down the FFL.

There is no college degree specifically aimed at running a gun shop. FFLs are often small businesses that face the challenge not just of complying with federal law but the business, licensing, and zoning laws of states and localities as well. Some learning inevitably occurs on the job. It is hardly surprising that boxes sometimes get missed on forms, serial numbers get transposed, or someone forgets to make a copy of an identification document.

Fortunately, these scrivener-type mistakes rarely have any material impact on public safety. That ATF usually recognizes this is laudatory and does not mean the agency is lax in holding industry members accountable.

As much as Brady may hate the idea, commerce in firearms is a legitimate, constitutionally protected business in the United States. There is nothing inherently shady or suspect about it, and members of the firearms industry should not be portrayed as criminals or public menaces for every mistake that winds up on a bureaucratic report. The inspectors themselves, after all, have to justify the work that they do and would risk total irrelevance and constantly diminishing resources if their labor didn’t generate some sort of corrective action now and then.

Ironically, Brady’s effort mostly underscores that FFLs operate within a heavily regulated environment and still mostly manage to do so safely, accurately, and with high levels of compliance.

It is true, as Brady asserts, that the ATF does not have the resources to inspect every single FFL right up to the legal limit. But the big picture that emerges from the ATF’s own published data from inspections that do occur strongly indicates that would be a waste of time and resources, anyway.


About NRA-ILA:

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess, and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Visit: www.nra.org

National Rifle Association Institute For Legislative Action (NRA-ILA)

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john

Please look at the photo think about what you are looking at selling the right firearm to a person in the reasonability of the gun store. Doing that job has more to do than just filing paperwork correctly. The young woman’s left wrist explaining site picture she looks like a deer in the headlights. Our sport all begins with common sense then safety on top of more safety educating the new gun owners should be the beginning of the conversation at the store level. That photo of the women holding that firearm is just bad on all levels. For those… Read more »

Arny

Your Assuming a lot from a quick snap shot. lol

john

Stood in many a gun store and watched as those without any or little knowledge bought guns that were way wrong for themselves.

nrringlee

If it were not for half-truth based propaganda the Progressive New Left would be speechless. This is one such case. Brady and the Moms will tickle the ears of the gullible and will remain an irritant to those of us who actually have critical thinking skills but most have figured them out. Note the name changes. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. The name changes simply mask the identities of the same propaganda machines. And how can you tel they are a fraud? Simple. Force them to use ‘shoe on the other foot’ logic.… Read more »

swmft

atf is a wast of resources

Knute Knute

And the NRA isn’t much better. But at least we aren’t FORCED to support the ‘Make Wayne LaPierre rich fund’ with our tax dollars. Lots of foolish ones continue to pour resources into WLPs waiting pockets, but at least they aren’t forced to contribute. They’re just too foolish to wake up and take a good look at their situation.

Arizona

Their very existence is an affront to the 2nd amendment, as their purpose is to infringe on the right to keep and bear arms. Every gun law is unconstitutional and must be nullified. The atf and half the current government departments and agencies in existence were created in violation of the Constitution, under authority Congress and others assumed but did not have. Abolish them.

Ronnie

atf are part of the allianc e of nazi control freaks

Cruiser

They are uselessly redundant.