Rep. Bruce Braley (D-IA)

Bruce Braley (D-IA), Representative for the First Congressional District, is looking for your input on gun control. In a survey on his congressional website regarding Universal Background Checks, Rep. Braley says:

[cp_quote style=”quote_normal_dark”]The high level of gun violence inside our nation’s schools is simply unacceptable. The shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut in December of 2012 was followed by shootings at dozens of other schools around the country. Something must be done to stop this senseless and tragic violence.

However, several pieces of legislation addressing gun safety have been considered by Congress, but not a single one has passed.

One proposal includes instituting universal background checks to close loopholes to prevent guns being sold to people who aren’t allowed to own them — like those with previous criminal convictions or mental health problems.

Take my quick survey: Do you think that Congress should pass a gun safety law requiring all individuals to undergo a brief background check prior to purchasing a gun?[/cp_quote]

We all know the answer to that question, so CLICK HERE and take a few moments today to respond to Rep. Braley’s survey to tell him that Universal Background Checks are a bad idea, and inform him of one or a few of the following points:

  • Criminals obviously don’t do background checks, thus any changes or additions to background check laws only affect people who obey the law, unfairly and unnecessarily increasing their burden.
  • Much like a restraining order, background checks don’t prevent violent crime anyway.  To criminals, such laws are simply words on paper somewhere to be ignored.
  • The only way to enforce a Universal Background Check system would be to enact a universal gun registration system, which is absolutely not an option and we will not even entertain such a notion under any circumstance.
  • There are already tens of thousands of gun laws across the country, and they’re clearly not doing the trick.  One more gun law isn’t going to magically solve the violence problem, so Congress should focus on enforcing the laws it previously enacted, rather than grasping at straws making new ones for the P.R. purposes of appearing to be working for the public good.
  • The government barely prosecutes attempted gun purchasers who are rejected by the current background check system, so adding more transactions to the system for the alleged purposes of stopping crime is laughable at best.
  • Our privately owned guns are our private property.  The government has no business being involved in a private transaction of private property, and a background check is therefore yet another invasion of our privacy perpetrated by the government.
  • There is no such thing as “gun crime” any more than there is such a thing as “knife crime” or “baseball bat crime.”  There is only crime–violent crime, in this case.  Thus all laws beginning from the premise that such a thing as “gun crime” exists begin from a false premise, and are therefore philosophically “bad law” in a Rule of Law society such as ours.  So instead of taking a “Band-Aid approach” to crime by merely treating symptoms, Congress should stop trying to merely look good and actually address the root causes of crime, such as broken families and households, poor education, and joblessness.  Any cop can attest that most felons they arrest share one or more of these characteristics.
  • The majority of felonies are committed by previously convicted felons.  Various studies report the rate of recidivism between two-thirds and three-fourths.  As violent crimes–including those committed with firearms–are typically felonies, it stands to reason that one very good way to make violent crime drop by a dramatic 66-77% would be to keep felons in prison.


As always, I know we can count on you to make your voices heard, because when it comes to guarding our civil rights, it’s all hands to the middle here at the Iowa Firearms Coalition!

Fighting for your Second Amendment Rights in Iowa,
Barry B. Snell
IFC Communications Director
NRA Member