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The Extremely Inefficient—And Only—Way to Trace Guns in the U.S.

Aug 06, 2019 | 770 videos 

 

Video by David Freid

On television, when a perpetrator leaves a gun at the scene, a quick computer search can point law enforcement to the weapon’s owner. In reality—at least in the United States—no such database of firearms exists. To have one would be illegal, according to legislation that passed in Congress in 1986, lobbied for by the National Rifle Association.

 

Instead, we have the National Tracing Center, in Martinsburg, West Virginia. There, a nonsearchable index of paperwork related to gun purchases is housed in hundreds of shipping containers and file boxes. The small federal agency operates with technology so antediluvian that it precludes the use of an Excel spreadsheet. It is the only facility in the country that tracks firearms from a manufacturer to a purchaser.

 

In David Freid’s short documentary Guns Found Here, Special Agent Charles J. Houser of the Bureau for Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, who runs the facility, reveals the Kafkaesque record-keeping systems that he deftly employs to manage more than 67 million files on a shoestring budget.

 

“The technology that we use is largely designed to prevent us from being able to create the registration system,” Houser explains in the film, which was recently nominated for an Emmy.

 

Every day, Houser and his team field more than 8,000 trace requests from authorities across the country; annually, the facility traces more than 450,000 guns to their owners to help solve violent crimes. Some of these crimes are mass shootings. In 2007, the center performed a trace on the gun used in the murder of 32 students and faculty at Virginia Tech; in 2011, the agency tracked the gun involved in the shooting of 19 people, including Representative Gabrielle Giffords, in Tucson, Arizona.

 

“Finding the owner of a gun crime more quickly could save lives,” Freid told me, “but anything that even remotely looks like a searchable database is against the wishes of the original legislation that created this.”

 

Freid filmed at the National Tracing Center for two days. During that time, there was a mass shooting. The day Freid released Guns Found Here, there was another mass shooting.

 

“Fixing this one small issue of the analog tracing center would have a ripple effect on sensible gun legislation that could help prevent further mass shootings,” the filmmaker said.

 

 

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So the Reagan government catered to the NRA.

Whoodathunkit?

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The only difference between the USA and any other banana republic in terms of corruption, is the number of bananas.

More money means you can buy off more people.

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On 8/8/2019 at 11:08 AM, SloopJonB said:

So the Reagan government catered to the NRA.

Whoodathunkit?

The tracing of gun ownership should on the list of things to modernize and improve, also tracing ammo. It should be no problem.

Won't solve the issue of crazy people getting rapid-fire military-caliber weapons, because they won't care about accountability; with the exception that it will discourage some gun sellers from selling to them.

- DSK

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On 8/8/2019 at 10:08 AM, SloopJonB said:

So the Reagan government catered to the NRA.

Whoodathunkit?

And the NRA paranoia stems from a movie staring Charlie Sheen that came out 35 years ago last week - Red Dawn. Can't register guns because when the Commies invade they'll confiscate them :lol:

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2 hours ago, Mismoyled Jiblet. said:

And the NRA paranoia stems from a movie staring Charlie Sheen that came out 35 years ago last week - Red Dawn. Can't register guns because when the Commies are elected they'll confiscate them :lol:

FIFY 

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6 minutes ago, chinabald said:
2 hours ago, Mismoyled Jiblet. said:

And the NRA paranoia stems from a movie staring Charlie Sheen that came out 35 years ago last week - Red Dawn. Can't register guns because when the Commies are elected they'll confiscate them :lol:

FIFY 

Speaking of paranoia...

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Just now, Ishmael said:

Speaking of paranoia...

You think? I work for a guy who was raised in a Communist country, he is more afraid this is going to happen then any MAGA person I know. He points to things on a regular basis to back up his fear. I tend to believe someone who has lives it over a party who has spent 10 years trying to redefine what socialists and Nazis are. 

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28 minutes ago, chinabald said:

You think? I work for a guy who was raised in a Communist country, he is more afraid this is going to happen then any MAGA person I know. He points to things on a regular basis to back up his fear. I tend to believe someone who has lives it over a party who has spent 10 years trying to redefine what socialists and Nazis are. 

and this would be why you are a rube.

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45 minutes ago, chinabald said:

You think? I work for a guy who was raised in a Communist country, he is more afraid this is going to happen then any MAGA person I know. He points to things on a regular basis to back up his fear. I tend to believe someone who has lives it over a party who has spent 10 years trying to redefine what socialists and Nazis are. 

Communism? Like a rational health care system? That communism?

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23 hours ago, Ishmael said:

Communism? Like a rational health care system? That communism?

No, more like this...

North-Korea.jpg?1383153625

How's that for health care? 

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On 8/11/2019 at 12:42 PM, chinabald said:

You think? I work for a guy who was raised in a Communist country, he is more afraid this is going to happen then any MAGA person I know. He points to things on a regular basis to back up his fear. I tend to believe someone who has lives it over a party who has spent 10 years trying to redefine what socialists and Nazis are. 

Let's see..... which political party in the US has been running concentration camps? Which one is behind privatizing prisons, and renting prison labor to corporations?

That should be the political party your friend is worried about.

- DSK

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1 hour ago, Steam Flyer said:

Let's see..... which political party in the US has been running concentration camps? Which one is behind privatizing prisons, and renting prison labor to corporations?

That should be the political party your friend is worried about.

- DSK

Yes all that has happened in the last 2 years and in a vacuum. 

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On 8/11/2019 at 1:11 PM, Mismoyled Jiblet. said:

and this would be why you are a rube.

Quite the one note song you are.

Your vocabulary is underwhelming. 

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42 minutes ago, chinabald said:

Quite the one note song you are.

Your vocabulary is underwhelming. 

Why waste words on someone who's argument is "the Democrats are communists because a dude I worked with who grew up under communism thinks they do communist things"? I'm never going to change your mind no matter the quality of argument I make. No matter what facts are brought to bear. No one on "the left" ever will. The only change that'll happen is when you - like the rest of the Republican supporters - hit rock fucking bottom. I keep hoping that there's some floor, something you won't stand - that you guys aren't as mendaciously shitty and stupid as labelled. But, like Trump, you are worse. The only shitty thing is you are dragging the country with.

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15 hours ago, Mismoyled Jiblet. said:

Why waste words on someone who's argument is "the Democrats are communists because a dude I worked with who grew up under communism thinks they do communist things"? I'm never going to change your mind no matter the quality of argument I make. No matter what facts are brought to bear. No one on "the left" ever will. The only change that'll happen is when you - like the rest of the Republican supporters - hit rock fucking bottom. I keep hoping that there's some floor, something you won't stand - that you guys aren't as mendaciously shitty and stupid as labelled. But, like Trump, you are worse. The only shitty thing is you are dragging the country with.

I see so everything you believe is truth and cannot be questioned. While everything others believe is wrong and should always be questioned. 

You are one of the biggest knee jerk responders here,  you comment based on who is saying something, not on what they say. Your opinions are weakened by that. 

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On 8/12/2019 at 2:42 AM, chinabald said:

You think? I work for a guy who was raised in a Capitalist country, he is more afraid this is going to happen then any Antifa person I know. He points to things on a regular basis to back up his fear. I tend to believe someone who has lives it over a party who has spent 10 years trying to redefine what capitalists and Nazis are. 

Does this still prove anything me old china?

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16 hours ago, chinabald said:
17 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

Let's see..... which political party in the US has been running concentration camps? Which one is behind privatizing prisons, and renting prison labor to corporations?

That should be the political party your friend is worried about.

 

Yes all that has happened in the last 2 years and in a vacuum. 

?

Don't see how that affects the point, here. The Republicans are the ones creating a new plantation economy and a one-party totalitarian state. The fact that they are counting on Putin to help them keep power ought to alarm your friend even more.

- DSK

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10 minutes ago, Shortforbob said:

Does this still prove anything me old china?

Maybe not. But I trust someone who has lived with actual communists to know what they look like. 

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6 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

?

Don't see how that affects the point, here. The Republicans are the ones creating a new plantation economy and a one-party totalitarian state. The fact that they are counting on Putin to help them keep power ought to alarm your friend even more.

- DSK

The Dems are the ones counting on Putin. Just by repeatedly reciting his name they are using fear to control the Dem minions 

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1 minute ago, chinabald said:

The Dems are the ones counting on Putin. Just by repeatedly reciting his name they are using fear to control the Dem minions 

Sorry, this is just bizarro dittohead bullshit. Ask Mitch McConnell why he refuses to do anything to reduce Russian interference in elections. President Trump hasn't tried to do anything at all.

You believe Putin rather than US intel services, right? They're all under control of the Deep State, right?

- DSK

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2 hours ago, chinabald said:

Maybe not. But I trust someone who has lived with actual communists to know what they look like. 

Ask him about purging scientists because party dogma runs contrary to the science produced by the scientists. Ask him about a cult of personality surrounding the leader. And then maybe a read a fucking book or four on communism and think. Because when someone bases there opinion on something as fucking stupid as you did here, there's not much to talk about but the person repeating  the stupid shit. And that's what I'm left with here - a bunch of stupid  righties saying the latest stupid partyline bullshit. Like you claiming the democrats are Communists.

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On 8/11/2019 at 11:39 AM, Ishmael said:

Speaking of paranoia...

Joe Biden already said if elected he's coming for our guns. Is that paranoia?

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2 minutes ago, F_L said:

Joe Biden already said if elected he's coming for our guns. Is that paranoia?

Yes.

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The insanity of the rightwing. They stake out stupid, nuts, positions like "the Democrats are communists" and "the Democrats are going to take all our guns" and then force an argument on their terms about their collective insanity.

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5 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

Sorry, this is just bizarro dittohead bullshit. Ask Mitch McConnell why he refuses to do anything to reduce Russian interference in elections. President Trump hasn't tried to do anything at all.

You believe Putin rather than US intel services, right? They're all under control of the Deep State, right?

- DSK

Obama refused to accept that Russia was a threat to the US , in fact he made jokes about it during his last campaign. The 80s are calling for their foreign policy back. Then this Russian interference happened, during his administration. So yeah I can see how the left thinks this is Trumps fault. 

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2 hours ago, F_L said:

Joe Biden already said if elected he's coming for our guns. Is that paranoia?

 

2 hours ago, Ishmael said:

Yes.

Just because your paranoid doesn't mean they are NOT after you (or your guns).

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6 minutes ago, F_L said:

 

Just because your paranoid doesn't mean they are NOT after you (or your guns).

Just because you can't spell doesn't mean you're a future mass murderer  

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https://dailycaller.com/2019/08/05/biden-going-to-come-for-guns/

“So to gun owners out there who say well, a Biden administration means they’re going to come for my guns,” CNN’s Anderson Cooper said in an interview with Biden.

“Bingo,” the Democrat interjected, “you’re right if you have an assault weapon.”

 

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2 hours ago, chinabald said:

Obama refused to accept that Russia was a threat to the US , in fact he made jokes about it during his last campaign. The 80s are calling for their foreign policy back. Then this Russian interference happened, during his administration. So yeah I can see how the left thinks this is Trumps fault. 

You either forget, or you're pissing out the same kool-aid.

Obama knew about Russian interference during the 2016 campaign and put sanctions on Russia. He went to McConnell and Ryan and they basically said "Yeah we know, we're winning."

Either Obama was spying on Trump for his Russian connections, or he did nothing. You can't have it both ways.

- DSK

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The biggest threat to the United States of America isn't Russia, or China or terrorists or  European hegemony.

The biggest threat to us now is our own ignorance and love of strife and left-right wanktarianism. Instead of building on our neglected infrastructure for research, transport and resources, we're instead dicking around in a national game of illogical and largely pointless blame.

We are leaderless.

The left and the right need a common cause that doesn't involve blowing up brown people. We need a new starting line of a contest of industry, cleanliness and health that we can win, one that can be a gift for our grandchildren, the way the Greatest Generation gifted us with the contemporary economy. 

I only know of one person who has demonstrated an understanding of this emerging reality.

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9 hours ago, mikewof said:

I only know of one person who has demonstrated an understanding of this emerging reality.

Thanks Mikey, that's kind of you to acknowledge that.

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