Charleston shooting

No, Dylann Roof Didn't Arm Himself Through a 'Legal Loophole'

The absence of yet another law that somebody could have ignored just means that you have one legal violation instead of two.


Booking photo

For the record, when an act is illegal, but somebody does it anyway, the absence of yet another law that the somebody could have ignored is not a "legal loophole"—it just means that you have one legal violation instead of two. Yet Jeff Guo argues over at the Washington Post that (allegedly) murderous apartheid nostalgic Dylann Roof was able to arm himself to wreak havoc because of a "legal loophole" that allowed him access to a firearm. Writes Guo:

Federal law prohibits people with pending felony charges from obtaining firearms. In February, Roof was arrested and later charged with felony possession of Suboxone, a narcotic prescription drug. He was released, and  the case is pending.

Because of his criminal record, Roof would not have been able to buy a gun from a store. Federally licensed gun dealers are required to run background checks on gun purchasers, and Roof's pending charges should have turned up as a red flag.

But Roof didn't need to go to a dealership. According to his uncle, Roof received a .45-caliber pistol from his father in April for his birthday, Reuters reports.

South Carolina is one of 40 states that do not require background checks for private gun transactions, like the one that allegedly took place between Roof and his father. Gun control activists call this the "private sale" loophole.

It's illegal to give guns to felons or people with felony indictments — but that's only if you know about their criminal records. In South Carolina, you don't have to ask, so private citizens can more or less freely exchange guns.

Leave aside the fact that it's not yet known if the gifted gun was the one used in the killing. Is Guo arguing here that Roof's father, who it seems was willing to commit a crime by illegally giving a gun to his son against whom felony charges were pending, would have been brought up short by a requirement that he run the transfer through a dealer who would have then told Roof's old man (assuming the system's data was up to date) what he already knew? And that this would have prevented the transfer of the gun?

Apparently so.

People who argue for perfecting the world through the addition of yet one more rule in the never-boring game of statutory Jenga often seem to confuse the emissions of legislatures with the laws of nature. Hey, the law of gravity sucks, right? So we can prevent tragedy with a law that makes you run gift-giving performed across a gap of two feet in the privacy of a home through a database. Ha! That will do the trick!

Ummm… Have you met any of your fellow humans?

Guo writes that,"In South Carolina, you don't have to ask, so private citizens can more or less freely exchange guns." But that's true even in the states that require background checks—because those requirements really aren't enforceable. Private transactions are, by their nature, private. Unobserved, they're not good candidates for regulation.

Horrendous crimes understandably spur people to find a solution. But if preventing them were as simple as passing one more law, we would probably have perfected the world a long time ago.

Update: CNN reports that the gun used in the attack was purchased in April, at a gun shop. So the transaction was subject to a background check, to no effect. H/T: Fred Zuccini

NEXT: The 2016 Candidates on the Charleston AME Church Shooting

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  1. OT:

    Shocked tourists amazed to discover that new Barcelona ‘mid-walk statue’ is in fact made of flesh and blood

    A living statue near Park G?ell in the Spanish city has stumped tourists
    The man stands stock still, despite being in a mid-walk pose
    In recent years Barcelona has had to limit the number of living statues…..VIDEO.html
    Damn that looks uncomfortable.

    1. Yep.

      Also, I like how the one caption SOUND LIKE WRITE BY STEVE SMITH!

      Hold it right there: in spite of appear to have been caught in mid step the ‘living state does not move a whisker


        1. NICE

  2. “Try this one, weird trick to get a gun illegally!”*

    * Not an actual thing, and there is no intent to break any laws, especially laws regarding the use of wood chippers. Or guns. Or anything else.

  3. So, just for shits and giggles I went over to LRC to see what they had to say about the shooting…

    1. LRC? Lou Reed Central?

    2. The Lightning Rod of Controversy?

  4. Have any of you actually read the Bill of Rights? It’s lousy with legal loopholes.

    1. Do you pay the maximum taxes you can? If not, “loopholes”!

    2. And that 2A is so vague. I mean, it says nothing about felons or concealed weapons or automatic rifles.

    3. All it says in there is something about the “free State,” which says nothing about the states. There’s a huge distinction between State as a singular entity and states in the plural.

      I mean, unless healthcare is at issue. Then State means states.

      1. …or is that like stating the obvious?

      2. There’s also the distinction between Government as a noun and government as a verb.

    4. I know… it says “Congress shall make no law…”

      Nothing about the President or Supreme Court making such a law.

      1. but there are OTHER places that say the pres and the Supremes can’t make law.

      2. That’s the First, not the Second.

  5. Don’t let the facts get in the way of the narrative, J.C.

  6. Ummm… Have you met any of your fellow humans?

    You ask this jokingly, but it’s actually a valid question. It’s frequently stunning how little some people–like this guy–seem to understand about human nature. And he’s a human!

    It’s indicative of the sociopathy of people like this writer, and unfortunately many people. He’s never been capable, or never bothered, to actually think about or put himself in the shoes of others. He doesn’t think of other people as humans, or he wouldn’t think they could be controlled by Just One More Rule ™. He thinks of them as herd animals at best, and simple blank pawns at worst. And this is why you get the constant drumbeat for Just One More Rule ™. Because they don’t think of any or most of their fellow humans as…human.

    1. And he’s a human!

      Well – YOU ASSUME he’s a human.

      For all I know, he’s one of Mr. Lizard’s compadres….

      1. Nope not us, we feed on mammals the old fashion way. All of our space cannons and middiles are just for domination.

        And that guy? A lizard? Seriously?…

    2. Did you say sociopath? Maybe we could put this guy on a list… you know, for his own protection. And ours. And while we’re at it, maybe let’s suspend certain rights, like his first amendment. Again, for our protection. I mean his.

      1. Do you have a point?

        1. Aside from poking fun at Lindsey Graham? Almost never.

      2. Hmm, needs more woodchippers.

    3. But Epi, IT’S THE LAW.

      It’s frequently stunning how little some people–like this guy–seem to understand about human nature. And he’s a human!

      How did Tulpa get a gig at the post? Although, I question the assertion that he’s human.

      1. Tulpa is too busy obsessively stalking H&R and making new socks to get a new gig. He’s a busy fellow, donchaknow.

    4. Because they don’t think of any or most of their fellow humans as…human.

      I have a leftist GF. I think it’s more that they think the people who are attracted to government are not humans, but something better, and so they have to keep the all too human rest of us in line.

      1. We humans, who are too dumb and greedy to rule ourselves, are also smart enough to elect others to rule for us.

        Sure. Gotcha. Whatever you say.

      2. Same thing. They don’t think the rest of us are what they are. We’re less, we’re subhuman, we’re pawns, we’re just livestock to be controlled.

        1. Same thing from an anarchist perspective (which is of course the best perspective). But the idea that government and being ruled is part of the natural state of humanity is a very old one. In that view, it’s not that some people are subhuman. It is that being human necessarily involves being ruled.
          Basically we never got past Aristotelian ideas of what it is to be human.

      3. I have a leftist GF]

        I know what you mean. Smart women are hard to bed.

  7. Banning dangerous objects from humans: it will be a long list. Humans have always killed each other. As a matter of fact- most of our inventions come from the competitive market of warfare. So go ahead and ban some objects dipshits. The crazies of the world will still find ways to kill. Here’s a thought: how about making sure everyone has a chance to defend their selves? There ought to be an amendment to the Constitution which helps us do this…

  8. Yet another idiot who puts gas in his car when the battery is dead.

  9. Don’t you mean “alleged piece of shit”?

    1. No, not really.

  10. He kind of looks like a young sober Jim Breuer. I’m just going to think of Breuer and smile whenever I see his picture instead of learning this shithead’s name or any details about him.

  11. And if his father didn’t just give him the gun what is a little pettty larceny on top of 9 murder charges likely with a hate crime enhancer? He’s getting the death penalty either way.

    And if his father didn’t own a gun the laws of supply and demand ensure that there will be any number of fine upstanding individuals more than willing to supply him with the gun outside the prying eyes of law enforcement.

  12. Why should anyone be allowed to do anything without the government knowing about it?

    1. Free people ask permission and obey orders.

  13. statutory Jenga

    Nice. Stealing that.

    1. He’s got a way with words. He oughta write a(nother) book.

  14. Tell You what, once they figure out how to keep crazy people from getting illegal drugs, then we can apply those lessons to guns. Aside from not working, bans are great.

    1. If only the country was as secure as a prison. Then nobody would be able to acquire illegal drugs, just as they’re unable to acquire them in prison.

    2. Bans feel good, Brett. And after all, isn’t that what matters? More than anything?

      1. Apparently. I’m probably losing friends as we speak for pointing out that guns will never be any harder to obtain than meth is today. Its probably mansplaining to other their feelings with facts. I already lost a bunch by pointing out it was racist to limit the definition of advanced nations to white European nations.

      2. Banned! One year! No social contract for you!

    3. [once they figure out how to keep crazy people from getting illegal drugs, then we can apply those lessons to guns. ]

      Simply figure out a way to keep crazy people from voting.

  15. “Horrendous crimes understandably spur people to find a solution. But if preventing them were as simple as passing one more law, we would probably have perfected the world a long time ago.”

    They know the laws are inadequate.

    Make no mistake, they want to repeal the Second Amendment.

    The reason they want our guns registered is so the police know who has what guns, and they can come confiscate them when they take our Second Amendment rights are no longer protected.

    1. I’ve been on a mission lately to acquire some firearms through private sales, so that if/when they come to confiscate the one I acquired at a gun shop, they won’t know about the others.

      1. I understand that logic.

        We should make sure to call this stuff out when we see it, though.

        A lot of people still think you’re being paranoid if you say that they just want to know who has the guns so they can confiscated them when the time comes.

        Certainly, no cop ever looks up an address on the registry and thinks, “Oh, I don’t have to worry about whether this guy has a gun–the registry says he doesn’t have any”.

        Is there any legitimate purpose for a registry other than confiscation?

        1. Certainly, no cop ever looks up an address on the registry and thinks, “Oh, I don’t have to worry about whether this guy has a gun–the registry says he doesn’t have any”.

          In states like Massachusetts the cops do exactly that. In that state you can’t legally own a gun unless it is registered, and if they come to a call to a residence where they know there is a legally registered firearm, they’re coming in hot.

          1. There are so many unregistered guns, though, that no cop is going to take a relaxed attitude just becasue someone isn’t on the registry.

            Maybe if they’re in the suburbs–but that isn’t because the address in question isn’t on the registry. They’re relaxed because it’s in the suburbs.

            Down in the ghetto, nobody registers their guns. And the cops surely don’t assume that no one is packing because of that. They just assume that everyone is packing anyway.

            1. I’m only saying that if they know for sure that there’s a gun there, then they’re going to be extra jumpy.

              1. All the more reason not to register.

      2. One thing you might consider is buying guns as a group — people figure out what they want and the cost, but someone else buys it, then you later swap guns. Then when they trace the serial numbers, no one has their gun any more.

        This might technically violate the strawman laws, but since everyone ran through the background check, it shouldn’t.

        1. There’s still a paper trail.

          1. But it ends at you for a gun you don’t have. It’s better than nothing in states which require universal background checks. Of course, if you don’t mind being caught with a self-defense gun which isn’t in your name, go ahead.

            1. I’m glad I live in a state where my self-defense gun doesn’t need to be in anyone’s name.

          2. Congress has mandated that NICS checks that are given the seal of approval must be destroyed after a brief interval, and that only refusals can be kept long-term.
            The only permanent paper trail is the 4473, which remains in possession of the selling dealer until he goes out of business, when it – along with the A&D book – is forwarded to the ATF Repository in WV.

      3. Of 8 functional guns i own only 2 went through dealers. The rest were inherited or bought from friends.
        I think all handguns are supposed to go through dealers, which is too bad. But in NH there is no paper trail or registration except for dealer transfers, so who would know? I think Maine is similar, no? Not that I would ever break the law or encourage anyone else to do so.

      4. in most states purchasing a gun through FFL still does not guarantee you STILL have it. Buy a new handgun today, put it on GunBroker tomorrow, find a buyer, ship it off. The record from manufacturer to distributor to dealer, to me is a clear path. Once I have it, there is no way to follow it when I dispose of it, particularly when sold through something like GunBroker. Yes, I HAVE to ship it to an FFL, but only I know who… Gunbroker do not., nor is their any path from the dealer who sold it to me (I now have it) through to the one to whom I sell it. SO.. six months down the road when Ossifer Obie comes round knicking up my door asking to have that SPringfield I bought last December… I can simply tell him “well, I came on hard times and sold it. I shipped it to an FFL in some other state, but have no record of which one, or where…….. and no one can PROVE I’m not telling the truth, or that I am. Dead end trail……. same if I am the one buying from Gunbroker fully compliant and through an FF as my local transfer dealer. No continuous trail. LE have NO clue I haev that one. OR if I buy a used gun from a gunshop, FFL and all. They’d have to come to him with a warrant to search his Sales Record, line by line, page by page, until they find MY name… then, no guarantee I still have it.

        And THAT is why they want to build a nationwide registry that WILL (in theory but not reality) follow every firearm at every point of change in possession. Sort of like cars, now.

  16. Apparently so.

    Well, duuuuh.
    Laws are magic incantations, Dude. They render people incapable of volition.

  17. Seen on Twitter:

    “Scott Bixby ?@scottbix
    It’s harder to get food in this country than it is to get a lethal weapon.”

    I was unaware of government programs that give people money for firearms. He does make a good point that it’s way easier to buy a $500 firearm than a 15 cent banana.

    1. There’s a waiting period for bananas?

      1. And felons aren’t allowed to buy them.

      2. Hey, we have food deserts in this country, have you ever heard of a firearms desert?

        Nuff said

    2. Oh man, this guy’s got the IQ of a very stupid turtle:

      “@larryvan111 Florida, Wisconsin require mandatory drug testing to qualify for SNAP. No test of any kind required to get a gun at a gun show.
      5:21 PM – 18 Jun 2015”

      The first one of those is about government assistance. The second one is about buying the item yourself with your own money. You could buy several months worth of groceries for the cost of one gun.

      1. Dude, did you know that there is no test required to buy a sandwich at Jimmy John’s?!? OH MY GOD WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE

      2. That and drug testing was struck down in FL.

        1. Also, at least in FL, the testing indicates that people on welfare really can’t afford drugs.

      3. The gun gap between the rich and poor is unconscionable. In a free country in which everyone supposedly has access to firearms, it’s an injustice that we price even the most basic weapons out of reach of the poorest citizens.

        1. Awesome.

        2. hey, now, THAT is some impeccable logic. Nice work.

    3. I wish these people cared as much about the hundreds of children Barack Obama has killed in drone strikes over the last several years.

      When I think of the thousands of Americans who have been gunned down because of the Drug War Obama continues to prosecute, the tens of thousands of Mexicans who have died in the Drug over the last few years! All because of Obama’s Drug War policies…

      Don’t their lives matter, too?

      When a crazed individual senselessly murders 9 people, it’s a tragedy.

      When hundreds of Children are killed by Barack Obama’s drone strikes, and when thousands of people have been killed because of Barack Obama’s continued prosecution of the Drug War, that’s tragic, too. But there is something especially tragic when the President of the United States consciously and purposely maintains his policies that are responsible for all the killing.

      This maniac murdered these people because he’s a nut.

      Barack Obama kills thousands more, and he thinks it’s all worthwhile–and Obama’s slaughter is still ongoing.

      1. That’s different because when government kills people it’s OK.

        1. “[From 2006 to] 2013, the estimated number of killed in the Mexican drug warfare was exceeded 111,000 people.

          Through 2012, the number of killed by November was at 18,161.[216]

          Through 2013, the number of killed by November was at 10,929.[217]”


          2006-2008 was during the Bush Administration, but the rest of it is all Obama.

          And that’s just in Mexico! We haven’t even started talking about Americans yet!

          Barack Obama has no standing to criticize other people for polices that result in senseless killing.

        2. Government is just another word for things we do together! Like killing lots of innocent, mostly brown people!

          1. Like ensuring “three generations of imbeciles are enough”.

        3. It’s what gov’t does.

    4. Don’t forget the Fast & Furious deal.

    5. Supposing someone came at you with a banana and you haven’t got a gun?

      1. What about a pointed stick?

      2. Well that would be a very slippery situation and I wouldn’t find it appealing at all so I’d probably have to split

        1. *Points loaded banana at Rasilio*

      3. Unpeel the banana and throw the peel down so that they can slip on it – then kick the hell out of them.

  18. People who argue for perfecting the world through the addition of yet one more rule in the never-boring game of statutory Jenga often seem to confuse the emissions of legislatures with the laws of nature.

    If it wasn’t for people like you we’d have the New Soviet Man by now!

  19. Horrendous crimes understandably spur people to find a solution.

    If by “find a solution” you mean engage in a lot of mopery and handwringing.

    1. You know who elsed was spurred to find a solution?

  20. Great points, Too Chilly.

  21. In February, Roof was arrested and later charged with felony possession of Suboxone, a narcotic prescription drug. He was released, and the case is pending.

    Anyone wanna take bets that shit either exacerbates or can cause schizophrenic episodes?

    1. It’s an opioid agonist. I’m not aware of opioids or their agonists causing or exacerbating schizophrenic episodes. Does heroin cause or exacerbate “schizophrenic episodes”?

      1. Technically it’s an agonist mixed with an antagonist (buprenorphine + naloxone) – many addicts have been able to quit their habits, because unlike methadone, suboxone does not jack a tolerance sky high, and it also renders other opiates ineffective or even puts the user into withdrawal, making combinations of opiates far less appealing.

        No, there is no link between heroin or buprenorphine (or any other straight opiate agonist) and episodes of psychosis – on the contrary, most opioids tend to leave the user with a feeling of well-being (withdrawal may reverse this but withdrawal strong enough to hallucinate tends to make it extremely difficult to drive 300 miles and shoot into a crowd of people).

        1. Hmmm…okay, I stand corrected.

  22. Freedom is a loophole.

  23. Gun question:

    Ruger Mark III or 22/45?

    My understanding is that the only differences between the two are the grip angle and the 22/45 is lighter being that some of it is composite instead of steel. Oh, and the 22/45 is cheaper.

    Someone nearby has a 22/45 for sale for $325, while I have yet to see a Mark III for less than $375.

    I’m looking for an inexpensive plinker that shoots cheap ammo.


    1. “Someone nearby has a 22/45 for sale for $325, while I have yet to see a Mark III for less than $375.”

      Wherever you’re buying guns is too expensive. I have it on good authority that you can buy guns for less than the cost of food in some places.

    2. The Mark III has a Luger grip angle, while the 22/45 has a 1911 grip angle. Anyone tried both and have a preference?

      1. I had a 22/45 with slab side bull barrel. It was stolen and I has a sad thinking about it. Great gun, a bitch the strip and clean though. Never shot a mark iii.

        1. I’ve heard that they’re both a major pain in the ass to put back together. But I figure it’s one of those things where you do it a few times and you’re fine.

          1. It was the only gun I had to reference the manual every time I cleaned and I have a lot of guns.

            1. I’ve read many jokes about those Rugers never being cleaned.

          2. I still have my Mark II. Reassembly after a strip has one part that’s a pain in the ass; if I haven’t done it in a while it gives me fits.

            1. Reinsert the mainspring housing thought the hole in the upper receiver, turn gun upside down, pull trigger, hammer will rotate down, make sure pawl on hammer is coming into contact with the cup on the mainspring (if this is correct the housing will spring up a bit when forced flush with the backstrap), close latch, check for function.

      2. All the Ruger .22s are comfortable, reliable, and generally accurate. In any case, this is the kind of preference that only you can determine for yourself. Why would you care if someone else prefers one over the other? They don’t have your hands and wrists, only you do.

      3. I have both and prefer the 22/45 for the grip, weight and balance. I don’t really notice a difference in accuracy shooting with a red dot and suppressor.

      4. depends on what you are used to shooting. If 1911, XD, M&P, Kahr, Sig, H&K, HiPower, etc, the grip angle of the 22/45 will match, and you will shoot this one naturally. If you shoot Glock, Luger, etc, then the others will match. Do a point test… grip normally at the low ready, pick a point “over there”, look at it, close your eyes, bring the gun up to firing position, then open your eyes.. if the sights are fairly close to on the point you selected, that gun points naturally for YOU. If they are way off…. it does not, don’t get it unless you want to relearn how to shoot it every time you take it out, then unlearn to go back to your other guns.

    3. Used MK II. all the goodness of the three, none of the modern Ruger lawyer stupidity.

  24. What in the fuck?

    Indiana residents soon will be able to legally own manufactured short-barreled shotguns, also known as sawed-off shotguns.

    The Evansville Courier & Press reports ( ) that starting July 1 it will be legal to manufacture, sell or own a sawed-off shotgun in Indiana. The General Assembly approved a bill that brings state law in line with federal regulations.

    State Sen. Jim Tomes, R-Wadesville, says the law puts short-barreled shotguns back into a category of firearms that require background checks and permits from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

    The law also includes at 10-year sentence enhancement for possessing a sawed-off shotgun while committing certain offenses. It’s also illegal for someone to saw off the barrel of a shotgun. Tomes says the guns are made by licensed manufacturers.

    Could this by any chance be a reference to the standard 18″ barrel? Was there some sort of state minimum length?

    1. If you look at the Taurus Judge (or Smith & Wesson has a model now, too), it’s really better than a sawed off shotgun. Especially if you use the specialty ammo that’s made for it.

      It’s basically a big revolver that shoots .410 shotgun shells. They have specialty loads (and .45s) made for the gun now, and it’s about the most devastating gun you can shoot. I’d say it’s even better than a sawed off shotgun–and it’s legal, I think, everywhere but California.

      Basically, because it has a rifled barrel it isn’t considered a shot gun–so the barrel gets down to 2″, which, considering it’s on a standard revolver grip is going to be shorter in your hand than a sawed off shotgun.

      And it has 5 rounds–I think the S&W model has 6 rounds. I don’t know how you can get more firepower in a smaller package, and with the specialty rounds they’re making for the 45 (it shoots both .410 cartridges and .45s, you’re talking about a expansion along a .45 that’s the length of a shotgun shell. I might rather be hit by one of the 00 shot than one of those giant .45s.

      A lot of magazines hated the gun, but they were comparing it to other revolvers. It isn’t competitive against other revolvers. It’s comparable to a shot gun.

      1. No…just no. The Taurus Judge is a gimmick, a method for separating fools from their money. The rifled barrel makes it so that shooting shot out of it guarantees a crappy spread-out donut-shaped pattern, .410 ammo isn’t actually very powerful, and it’s oversized for shooting .45 LCs. It’s not at all comparable to an actual shotgun, anymore than it’s comparable to a revolver. It’s the worst of both.

    2. The need a penalty for use in uncertain offenses.

    3. We get machine guns, now SBS, switchblades to swords deregulated…
      but still no fucking (ahem) “Chinese throwing stars”. WTF?? Or other flat angular pieces of metal, apparently.

    Oh, the humanity!!1!!!!

  26. Colossus: The Forbin Project would solve all of this.

  27. Dear Reason,

    We asked you nicely during the Adam Lanza saga, but it seems we must ask again. Can you please stop fucking annotating every damn article about this event with the booking photo of this fucking mutant and his dead eyed vacant stare?

    1. Dude, at this point, they have clearly become aware that some people don’t like them putting the pictures of the killers up…yet they still do. Which means they don’t care that you do care. Just accept that they’ve decided that they want to put those pics up, and that’s that.

  28. I prefer the 1911 grip. I have never shot one, but I checked the 22/45 out (at a GUN SHOW!!!). I thought the balance was funky. It seemed weirdly topheavy to me. The Mk I/II/III is fun to shoot, but it apparently requires some sort of weird trick to assemble/disassemble for cleaning. YMMV

    1. some sort of weird trick to assemble/disassemble

      I keep trying to click that link so I can learn it, but it won’t let me! I also want to see the video where I can’t believe what happens next!

    2. You have to hold the weapon at different angles when you reassemble it so the parts fall in the right orientation. Every time I tried to assemble it without the manual, I had to take it apart and do it again with the instructions.

    3. The Mk I/II/III is fun to shoot, but it apparently requires some sort of weird trick to assemble/disassemble for cleaning.

      The action in the two is the same. I’ve handled both at a gun shop and thought the 22/45 seemed a bit light, being that it’s partially composite. The reason I’m leaning towards the 22/45, besides the price, is that eventually I’d like to get my hands on a 1911, and they share the same grip angle.

      1. Go to a range that has rental guns, and shoot both for a comparison test.
        Make sure they both have the same bbl configuration, as that determines the weight and balance.

  29. I’m a huge proponent of gun rights, but the author is a little off base. The author claims that having a “private sale background check” law could not have prevented this shooting, because it’s not enforceable and would have just been ignored anyway. He’s completely ignoring the principles of deterrence. Let’s pretend such a law IS on the books, right now. The shooter’s father would be facing some serious jail-time right now and fined into bankruptcy. Isn’t it possible to think that such a law, accompanied with very harsh punishments would deter one or two fathers from making such a transfer in the future?

    1. But you are burdening millions of legal gun owners to stop maybe a 1 in a million occurrence.

    2. The shooter’s father would be facing some serious jail-time right now and fined into bankruptcy.

      He already committed a felony in giving him the gun.


    3. Yea, some would. Plenty of others would be ignorant of the law and/or ignore it, though, regardless. Not many fathers think their sons are mass murderers.

      How many people would be incarcerated for this gun law who had no ill-intent?

      But there’s other arguments proposed above. Basics of supply and demand. If the VA Tech shooter who had a number of red flags and was noticeably off according to everyone who interacted with him could buy a gun, so could the dipshit in South Carolina.

      Trying to ban the source of a gun is like playing whack-a-mol. Just like with drugs.

    4. That’s a valid point, except that it’s based on the idea that the dad would assume his son might go out and murder people, thus bringing the feds down on him. In this case, the dad claims he had no idea.

      Here’s the salient point:

      “It’s illegal to give guns to felons or people with felony indictments ? but that’s only if you know about their criminal records. In South Carolina, you don’t have to ask, so private citizens can more or less freely exchange guns.”

      This guy HAD felony indictments and his dad KNEW. So he already broke the law since he gave guns to someone he knew was under indictment. If this law had been in place, he just would have broken two laws instead of one.

      1. CNN is saying that the Feds ran a trace on the pistol and that the punk bought it at a gun shop. Those background checks are really working aren’t they?

        1. That’s funny, if true. There is no lack of gun laws in this country. It’s just impossible to enforce the ones we already have. No amount of new laws is going to prevent these things.

    5. In states that do have private-party background checks (CA, for one) both the seller and buyer have to go to a gun dealer to complete the 4473, and have the NICS check done. If the state has a waiting period (CA: 10-days) the dealer has to hold the gun for that period. If the buyer is declined, they then run a check on the seller to see if he is cleared to get his gun back – you’d be amazed at how many people don’t know that they have lost their gun-rights for one reason or another. If he falls out, the gun must be given to LE.

    6. the guy DID pass the BGC to buy the gun he used in the shooting…. WITH the pending felony case… you also make the assumption that the Dad KNEW about the felony drug charges.. he may well not have. The kid is an adult, may not even live at his Dad’s house, and even if he does, probably is independent, not telling Dad everything he’s up to. He may well have kept the bust quiet….. unless it can be PROVEN Dad know of the bust and its current status, he’s committed no crime. The punk did lie on is 4473 form to buy the gun he did use at the church…… yet one MORE felony.

  30. A lefty acquaintance is now demanding the confiscation of all guns. I asked him if he thought the Montana militias or the inner city gangs or the million licensed deer hunters in Penna. would all comply. “Well, if they don’t, we will lock them all up.” I suggested he join the guys on the point who would be barging into these heavily armed houses. “Oh, that’s the job of the cops or the Army.” I reminded him that he usually says the army and the cops are part of the vast right wing oppressive apparatus so he was really going to rely on them to disarm the population?

    1. As a victory lap, you should clue him on what MLK thought about gun control:

      William Worthy, a journalist who covered the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, reported that once, during a visit to King’s parsonage, he went to sit down on an armchair in the living room and, to his surprise, almost sat on a loaded gun. Glenn Smiley, an adviser to King, described King’s home as “an arsenal.”

      1. This is something I love to bring up with gun-grabbers. If anyone mentions the fact that the 2nd Amendment is meant to act as a check upon the government, the gun-grabbers hoot and holler about how “crazy” that is. But civil rights activists back in the ’60s would keep guns handy, because of…the government. If they got attacked the local law enforcement often would not help them; shit, sometimes local law enforcement was participating in the attack.

        1. I think Condoleeza Rice had a few things to say on this subject.

    2. The fact that a leftist is advocating the mass imprisonment of millions of people is pretty wonderful. Stalin would be so proud.

    3. Maybe you should remind your friend that if the feds ever do go barging into people’s houses and it turns into a nationwide bloodbath or civil war, his comment about locking millions of his political enemies up will be out there for the opposing side to see for the rest of time.

  31. I bought a .22 conversion kit for my real 1911. Definitely money well spent.

    1. Where are you finding 22 ammo?

      1. The gun shop down the road carries it for between $6 and $8 per fifty round box. They’ve got shelves of it.

        1. I want mini-mag and I can’t find it anywhere for a reasonable price.

          1. Like I said, they’ve got shelves of the stuff. Lots of different brands. If I think of it I’ll swing in on the way home today and look, just for shits and giggles.

        2. Holy shit. I remember when its was $20 for 500 rounds. I am old, though.

          1. I remember when it was $15 for 550. That was only seven or eight years ago.

      2. Walmart never has it. Nor do they every have ammo for my .38.

        1. The last time I was in Walmart to buy ammo – they had nothing. I drive 50 minutes to Gander Mountain and they always have everything.

      3. That shop also has shelves of subsonic 22L. They sell a lot of suppressors as well.

        1. any talk of suppressors makes my wallet hurt.

          1. $200 just for the tax stamp.

            1. now THAT is quite the infringement on a device to infringe upon the noise emitted by a firearm…..

  32. I also want to see the video where I can’t believe what happens next!

    I don’t want to give the plot away, but I think it involves a hole in your boot.

  33. The gun
    Roof turned 21 in April, and a short time later he had a gun.

    On Thursday, investigators did a trace of the handgun used in Wednesday’s shooting and determined that it was a .45-caliber handgun Roof purchased from a Charleston gun store in April, two law enforcement officials told CNN’s Perez and Bruer.

    His grandfather says Roof was given “birthday money” and that the family didn’t know what he did with it.…..g-suspect/

    1. So he bought a gun from a licensed gun store despite pending felony charges and the store sold it to him anyway.

      So he got the gun because someone broke the law. If only we had more laws…

      1. I wonder if the background check system flagged that he had a pending felony. Bureaucracy is painfully slow and it way not have been registered yet? I seriously doubt an FFL will put his/her livelihood and freedom on the line to make an illegal sale.

        Also…I know this will come as a shock but he could have LIED on that portion of the background check.

        1. So now the progs will be requiring a lie detector test for every purchase.

        2. Form 4473 isn’t the background check. It’s just the illegal registration record kept at the FFL until they go out of business or otherwise lose their license. The background check is the phone call.

          1. true, but the 4473 is the form from which all the data given to the NICS desk is taken. To get that gun, the kid had to have lied. Had he ticked the YES box when it asks if you are under indictment for any felony charge, the FFL would have ended the sale right there. So he MUST have ticked tne NO box… lying… and committing a felony. ANOTHER felony, because acquiring or possessing a fiearm while under felony indictment is a felony.

        3. courts do not always send info on pending felony charges right away, often holding the report until the case is closed.

    2. So basically, he bought the gun before the felony indictment, correct?

      This sort of squares with some pieces I’ve read where the creep’s buddy said his mom took the gun away from him because she didn’t trust him with it, and he stole it back.

      Either way, this is clearly a guy who wouldn’t have been stopped by a background check (because the felony charge came after the purchase), and even when a family member tried to take it away out of genuine concern, he stole it back anyway.

      1. no, the felony charge was in Feb, the gun purchase was in April. Felony charge first, gun purchase after. Bad boy. BAAAAD boy

  34. Let’s pretend such a law IS on the books, right now.

    I hate to pierce your bubble of smug, but there already is a law against transferring a handgun to a person with a pending felony charge.

    1. yes, but the transferor MUST KNOW of the felony charge pending. You assume the Dad knew… not necessaril the case.

  35. Just watched Jon Stewart’s ‘take’ on things.

    Just what I expected. Emotionally driven nonsense filled with all sorts of false equivalences to much applause. It’s amazing how much people conflate being emotional with telling ‘truths about society.’

    Watch. The next law they will push for is putting people who buy guns as gifts for someone who then commits a crime with it in prison. Sorta like what they want to do with ‘climate deniers’.

    1. Although I think there may be some variation of this law on the books. I don’t know.

    2. Maybe, but first they need to asset forfeiture the ‘accomplice”s home and vehicles, just in case their prosecution falls apart.

  36. So much for Brady Bill background checks.

  37. get rid of the video ads that autoscroll me to the top while they load. that’s bull pucky

  38. This guy knows he’s full of shit. The government wants a database of gun owners and their lackeys will steal, cheat, and lie if they have to to get it for them. We can never be a communist country as long citizens have guns. they know that.

  39. I’m surprised that, in this litigious culture we have, that anyone would ever consider selling a gun privately to another person. Regardless of how much you trust that person not to commit a crime with it, there is always the significant chance that they’ll get caught with it, or that it will be stolen or sold and subsequently used in a crime. Then when It gets traced back to the last owner of record (you), just how likely are you to have an easy time defending against prosecution or lawsuits?

    1. if I sell you a car and next week YOU get rip snorting drunk and kill three people with it, is it MY FAULT? No it is not. YOU are the one got snockered then got behind the wheel and did a real stupid. Do NOT make ME responsible for what YOU do. I have enough burden carrying the responsibility for what I do.
      Further, there is no real “trace back to the owner”… LE can trace the serial number ONLY as far as the FIRST retail purchaser. Once it leaves his hands, the chain of record is broken. And this is preciely why they want full registration, just like with cars. But we all know that three hundred million people were killed by their own governments in the 20th Century AFTER those people were systematically disarmed by that same government. And THAT is why we MUST not allow any sort of real registration or owner database to be built or kept.

  40. I have read that his dad did NOT give him a gun, but rather money, which he then used to buy a gun.

    1. Yes. Here it is:

      CHARLESTON, S.C. ? Dylann Roof has confessed to authorities to shooting and killing nine people this week at a historically black church in Charleston, S.C., two law enforcement officials said Friday.

      One of the officials said that Roof, who is white, told investigators that he wanted to start a race war.

      He himself bought the .45-caliber handgun used in the shooting last April at a Charleston gun store, according to the two officials.

      Earlier, a senior law enforcement official had indicated that Roof’s father bought him a Glock firearm for his birthday.

      He was arested in February and later charged with a felony. Guo conveniently doesn’t clarify how much later. “Later” could mean after he purchased the gun in April before the charge. The entire piece by Jeff Guo is fantasy.

  41. Blurb from next version of this article:

    The absence of yet another law that somebody could have ignored just means that you have one two legal violations instead of two three.

    Version after that:

    The absence of yet another law that somebody could have ignored just means that you have one three legal violations instead of two four.

  42. It all started when Dylann was a little kid in his school cafeteria. He ate his sandwich such that it took on the shape of a gun and then he said, “Bang!”
    Had zero tolerance been in effect back then, this terrible shooting would not have occurred!

  43. Even though hiring illegal aliens is technically against the law, no one was there to observe nail salon workers hire the FOB Vietnamese workers. We need stringent regulations on immigration, the left argued, Oh wait, they actually didn’t.

    1. Can I hire space aliens instead?

  44. “Is Guo arguing here that Roof’s father, who it seems was willing to commit a crime by illegally giving a gun to his son against whom felony charges were pending”

    ? A gift isn’t a sale, is it? Would it actually have been illegal for his father to give his adult son a gun?

    What evidence is there that the father would know of such a bizarre regulation?

    Most likely, if he gave his son a gun, he simply had no idea it was a crime to do so, if it even *was* a crime for him to do so.

    1. giving or selling a gun is no crime.. UNLESS the provider KNOWS the reciever of the gun is a “prohibited person”.. under indictment for a felony charge, or a convicted felon. We don’t know if the dad KNEW of the felony. The felony charge may not have been filed at the time he got the gun.

      Ferderal law regulates (unconstitutionallly, by the bye) “transfers” of firearms…. defined as a transfer or ownership. Gift, sale, rent, trade, long term loan…. the “flavour” does not matter. If the gun changes hands or possession on a permanent or long term basis, it is a transfer., And transfering a gun to a prohibited person is a felony.. OF the transferor KNOWS or SHOUD HAVE KNOWN of the prohibited status.

      Later information indicates the Dad gave some money, and the kid went and bought the gun with it. Dad is off the hook…. unless he KNEW of the felony charge pending and ALSO that the guy had a gun….. and he )dad) failed to report the “felon in possession” status of his son.

      Further, we don’t yet know the date the felony charge was actually filed….. OR whether the dad knew about it.

  45. How about these two laws:

    1. If you provide a gun to anyone who commits a felony using that gun, you are equally guilty of the felony.

    2. If you use a gun during a felony, you will be sentenced to 20 years in addition to the sentence for the felony.

    Think that might help a bit?

    The moral is: Know to whom you are giving/selling a gun, and don’t use a gun in a felony.

    1. We now have CNC machine tools and 3D printers that can make guns. Do they need to be registered? What if a gun is made on an unregistered machine tool?

    2. citation for number 1, please? NO ONE is responsible for what a second person does. Unless I had prior knowledge that Charlie would use the gun I gave/sold him in the commission of a felony, I can not possibl be held accountable for Charlie’s stupidity.

      Your second moral is ridiculous: how about DON’T COMMIT A FELONY.

    3. How about you take rule one and fuck the hell off?

  46. I’m told by some Republican “friends” that, “Drugs made him do it”.

    1. Stormfront is a hell of a drug.

  47. “So we can prevent tragedy with a law that makes you run gift-giving performed across a gap of two feet in the privacy of a home through a database.”

    I had to read that sentence five times before I could understand it. Mind if I give it a shot?

    “So we can prevent tragedy with a law that makes you run through a database gift-giving performed across a gap of two feet in the privacy of a home?”

    Yeah, that’s not gonna work either.

  48. It is common for local fuzz to fail to update NICS with every felony charge, particularly if there is a high probability of it being bargained down to a misdemeanor. Then, there is the complete and utter lack of participation of the mental-health community in getting red-flags posted against the names of the real nut jobs.

  49. Often, a pending or open court case is NOT forwarded to the NICS system until the case is closed with a conviction or guily plea. In reality, this guy committed TWO crimes in purchasing the gun at retail. First, he KNEW, or should have known, that his felony charge made hom a prohibited person, debarred the use of arms. Second, he had to have lied on the 4473 form, as there is a tick-box on it that asks if you are under indictment in a felony case. Had he ticked the “yes” box he’d have been denied the sale even before callling NICS. Had he ticked the “no” box he lied on the form.. a felony all by itself.

    So the system is flawed.. such that his felony indictment was not relayed to the NICS database before the purchase.

    Can somebody please tell me what NEW LAW to further infringe upon MY right to arms would have prevented this person from acquiring the handgun he used in the murder? A three month waiting period perhaps?

    The Mad Mommies will try and make hay out of this one… we need to be vigilant that they don’t.

  50. Can the victims’ families sue the federal government because their required background check failed to keep Roof from buying a gun?

    1. You might well find that “the feds” are immune from action, that is a law suit.

  51. The mere fact that some ridiculous comment or opinion is published in The Washington Post or any other media outlet gives it no validity. The writer is entitled to his opinion, but that’s all it is, his opinion, something that others might well disregard.

  52. If there are still problems to be solved rest assured that people skater than us have tried to solve them with no positive results. What makes us human? To err is human. We err a lot. Rules, laws, regulations, codes, statutes and there is no one with any real authority to supervise.

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