By: Steve Tawa
For a second year running, prospective gun buyers joined Black Friday shoppers in record numbers. A Philadelphia-based organization working to reduce gun violence says it hopes the guns “are protected and used safely by their owners.”
CeaseFirePa Executive Director Shira Goodman speculates people were making buying decisions because of concerns over potential stricter gun laws in the new year.
“There was a lot of advertisement about what the re-election of President Obama might mean, although no action has been taken yet, or in his prior term about limiting access to legal guns.”
The FBI says firearms dealers nationwide swamped call centers with nearly 155,000 required buyer background check requests, a roughly 20-percent increase from last year’s previous one-day record.
Goodman says her organization is not focused on weapons going to law-abiding gun owners:
“We’re concerned about illegal guns, guns that are purchased or transferred illegally.”
During the just completed election, she says there was only a passing reference in one debate on the potential for limiting the availability of assault weapons.
Goodman also says Pennsylvania is among ten states that refuses to share thousands of mental health records with the national instant background check system. She says that allows “prohibited gun purchasers” to slip through the cracks.