In the wake of the recent mass shootings, reasonable people have been asking whether their state is doing everything it can to prevent people with severe mental illness from getting guns.
Unfortunately, according to latest data from the FBI, the answer right now is clearly: “No.”
When someone tries to buy a gun from a licensed dealer, they have to undergo a
However, most states have failed to submit millions of mental health records into the national do-not-sell gun database – making these gun checks alarmingly incomplete.
Every missing record is another tragedy waiting to happen.
And what’s worse, leaders at the state and national levels have not told us how they
plan on closing these fatal gaps.
Find out the risk level in your state – and then share the following map with friends and family so they can take action too.
COMMENTARY: If you click on the dark maroon colored states, you will find that some of them do little or nothing to screen gun applications for individuals with mental illnesses. Many of the individuals involved in mass killings by firearms had histories of mental illness. This includes the infamous Cho Seung-Hui, a Korean student who killed 34 students and teachers and wounded countless more at Virginia Tech and James Holmes, the University of Colorado medical school dropout who shot and killed numerous moviegoers in Aurora, Colorado.
If you are concerned as I am about how easy it is to obtain a gun if you have a mental illness, violent history or previous felony conviction, then fill out the short questionnaire next to your state. This will bring this matter to the attention of POTUS Barack Obama, ex-governor Willard Romney and your own State governor. Pass the link of the map to your friends who feel the same way.
NOTE: I am NOT against gun ownership, or legislation to prevent you from owning a gun, but I am for tougher gun registration legislation and preventing the sale of guns to individuals with violent pasts, mental illnesses and felony convictions. The right to bear arms is protected by the U.S. Constitution. However, many states (marooned-colored states) have very liberal gun ownership laws. Some states like Kentucky, don't even require gun ownership registration at all.
Courtesy of an infographic titled "Demand A Plan To End Gun Violence" prepared by DemandAPlan.org