What you probably did not know about gun legislation


By Hanna Kim

Federal Assault Weapons Ban
(AWB) 1994-2004

The Federal Assault Weapons Ban, passed in 1994, was one of the most extreme measures on gun control. It banned all semi-automatic guns and ammunition feeding devices with large capacities. This legislation was passed in response to multiple horrific shootings, including a 1989 shooting that took place at Cleveland Elementary School in Stockton, California. Thirty-four children and a teacher were killed with an AK-47 rifle. According to the Washington Post, though the number of mass shootings did decrease, the excessive loopholes in the law allowed people to purchase certain models of guns that performed similar tasks as the forbidden weapons. Additionally, any assault weapon made before the law was enacted remained legal to own and resell. Experts argue that the law would have been more effective if Congress upheld it, but the legislation expired in 2004 and has not been renewed since.

Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act
(PLCAA) 2005

This law went into effect in 2005 after a lawsuit from the Handgun Control Inc., better known as the Brady Campaign. Dennis Henigan, who spearheaded the lawsuit, attempted to prevent the production of handguns by arguing that even the manufacturing of such weapons was dangerous. The PLCAA would ban any lawsuits like the one above, as it would prevent firearms manufacturers and licensed dealers from being held liable for negligence when people use their products to commit a crime. The only exceptions to this act are if the dealers voluntarily let a customer steal a product from the store’s business premises, if they sell a product to an intoxicated customer, and if they purposely make an incorrect record of the deal. So, even if the dealers perform an inadequate background check, they will not be charged when the customer commits a crime with the purchased product.

1968 Gun Control Act
(Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993)

The Brady Handgun Violence Prevention sets a requirement for holders of Federal Firearms License (FFL’s) to conduct a background checks. The test reportedly takes 10 minutes over the phone.

Concealed Carry Reciprocity
(H.R. 38 – Inactive)

Though this act is not active yet, it has already gained Trump’s support and is set to pass in December. The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act, or H.R. 38, states that if an individual is allowed to carry a concealed gun in his or her home state, then he or she is able to do so in every other state. The act forces other states to follow the gun laws of the state with a looser hold on gun control. This act is only meant to permit, rather than prohibit, an individual to carry a gun. With the exception of school zones, gun carriers are therefore free to exercise concealed carry in every other public space.

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