Now, when the ATF invited me to its National Tracing Center—I was a contributor to Forbes at the time—they clearly thought I was a mainstream reporter who would advocate for their desired policy changes. I saw this on the faces of the officials giving the tour as I asked questions.
I asked, for example, if any of the 4473s had come from gun stores the ATF put out of business for making illegal sales. The official said “no” and added that it is “very hard to bust a gun-store owner.”
Actually, it isn’t. ATF agents can inspect gun stores anytime. If a gun from a crime scene can be traced to a gun store, then the agents can investigate the store. But this rarely happens. The ATF’s “Time to Crime” (the amount of time between an original gun sale at a dealer and the time it is found in a crime scene) number for 2019, for example, was 8.29 years.
Nevertheless, like the Obama/Biden administration once did, the Biden/Harris administration clearly wants to treat lawful gun ownership as a problem. President Joe Biden (D) has outright blamed gun stores for arming criminals, even though the data—and, by the way, multiple ATF agents I have interviewed—shows this statistically is not the case. Instead of bringing us together, the Biden/Harris administration seems intent on dividing us.
Gun owners have good reasons to not want the federal government’s noses in their gun safes.