Illinois Outlaws Private Gun Sales

Residents of Illinois face a new assault on their Second Amendment rights after the state’s Democratic governor signed a law that makes most private gun sales illegal. From now on, if residents of the Prairie State want to sell a gun privately, they’ll need to put the buyer through a background check first.

Residents of Illinois face a new assault on their Second Amendment rights after the state’s Democratic governor signed a law that makes most private gun sales illegal. From now on, if residents of the Prairie State want to sell a gun privately, they’ll need to put the buyer through a background check first.

On August 2, Illinois Governor JB Pritzker (D) signed a law mandating federal background checks for all gun buyers, commercial or private. Describing private sales as a “deadly loophole,” Pritzker claimed that people with criminal records that usually prevent them from buying guns from a dealer could get around the law by buying them privately. But the new Illinois law is “closing that down for good.”

Unfortunately, research doesn’t back up Pritzker’s claims. In 2018, the University of Chicago Crime Lab published research showing convicted felons who want guns simply get them in ways that don’t involve background checks. Harold Pollack, a co-author of the report, said “some of the pathways [to obtaining a gun] people are concerned about” – such as private sales – “don’t seem so dominant.”

Universal background checks haven’t stopped rising gun crime in California or Colorado, and most mass shooters managed to pass background checks before beginning their rampages. In other words, Pritzker is just taking away people’s rights for no good reason.

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