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Raleigh News & Observer Editorial: ATF Can’t Do Its Job on Guns Due to Lack of Resources

File photo of guns, via ATF

BY THE EDITORIAL BOARD
Raleigh News & Obsserver

Every time, yes every time there is a catastrophic episode of gun violence, the first rhetorical defense of the National Rifle Association and other gun rights advocates goes something like this: We have plenty of laws about guns. The problem is the government won’t enforce them.

But Kate Irby of the McClatchy Newspapers Washington bureau, in an extensive report, shows that federal officials, primarily because of a shortage of staffing to do inspections in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), are unable to keep up with their own minimum goals to inspect all firearms dealers.

The goal used to be every three years. Now it’s every three to five years. But a 2013 report from the Office of the Inspector General found just 58 percent of firearms dealers were inspected within five years. That’s an astonishing figure. People who deal in deadly weapons aren’t inspected in a timely fashion by federal officials. Automobile inspection rules are more strict.

To read the complete editorial click here.

 


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