Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Guns, guns, everywhere, and not a stop to think

Here in Washington State, if you’re 21, don’t have a felony conviction yet, and no one has bothered to certify that you’re crazy, you can pretty much get a gun, even a concealed pistol license (CPL). Notice I didn’t say you had to be a citizen -- you don’t. Granted, you may have to wait a while longer to get your license to carry as an alien, but what’s another 30 days? And if you’re a known terrorist? Well, there’s still hope. A government study showed that over the last 6 years, 1,119 people on the U.S. Government’s terror watch list were still able to buy firearms or explosives from licensed U.S. dealers.

But what about that extensive background check requiring you to wait an agonizing 5 days for your weapon? Not to worry, since 2007, Congress has allocated only $20 million of the $375 million authorized in the law requiring the background check. The poor schmuck in the basement of the ATF building must be doing 10,000 background checks a day just to stay up with demand, especially after the Tucson shootings.

So the next time you’re enjoying an outing in a wildlife refuge or national park, or even in your local park, and you see someone packing (and I don’t mean backpacking), don’t get all bent out of shape -- it’s perfectly legal -- just get the hell out of the park. God only knows who the nut with the gun is.

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