Tomorrow, the Texas Safety Commission will convene in El Paso for its second meeting to discuss gun violence prevention. Volunteers with Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America have urged the commission to consider recommending legislation requiring background checks on all gun sales and a strong Red Flag law, policies that are proven to save lives and enjoy bipartisan support.
Recent polling from Fox News showed that requiring a background check on all gun sales is supported by 89 percent of Republicans, 92 percent of Democrats and 93 percent of gun-owning households. If you’d like to interview a volunteer with the Texas chapter of Moms Demand Action prior to Thursday’s meeting, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
- Background checks are the bedrock of gun violence prevention. But under current federal law, background checks are required only for gun sales by licensed firearm dealers. No background check is required for sales by unlicensed individuals, who can sell guns to strangers they meet online or at gun shows. Fifteen states and the District of Columbia have closed this loophole by enacting laws requiring background checks on all gun sales. A recent report showed that in 2018 alone, there were as many as 60,362 ads on Armslist.com offering guns for sale in Texas with no background check required. More information on background checks is available here.
- Perpetrators of mass shootings and school shootings often display warning signs before committing violent acts. Red Flag laws allow immediate family members and law enforcement officers to act on those warning signs by petitioning a court to temporarily remove guns from dangerous situations. Seventeen states and the District of Columbia have enacted Red Flag laws, five of which were signed by Republican governors. Interventions in states with Red Flag laws have already prevented these potential tragedies. Red Flag laws can also be used to prevent suicides. More information on Red Flag laws is available here.