'Strawman law' would increase penalty for purchasing guns for others [Letter]

April 08, 2013

We have heard that the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. How about keeping guns out of the hands of the bad guys in the first place? Right now, there is no federal law that punishes people who buy guns for criminals who are banned from purchasing guns themselves. In a recent TV interview, Elijah Cummings, one of Maryland's representatives to the U.S. Congress, spoke about a guy in Georgia whose girlfriend bought him 64 guns in less than three months. Some of these guns ended up at crime scenes in Maryland, where it's much harder to buy guns.

That's why several Maryland Representatives, including Elijah Cummings, are co-sponsoring the Gun Trafficking Prevention Act of 2013 to increase the penalty for anyone who purchases a gun for another person who is prohibited from possessing one ("strawman purchases"). This bi-partisan legislation will help stop criminals from getting guns illegally, and make those who buy guns for criminals liable for their actions. Call your congressman and tell them you support HR 452. Tell them not to worry about backlash from the NRA — your vote counts too!

Joanne Locke

Central Maryland Committee to Prevent Gun Violence

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