To the editor,

I keep hearing how easy it is to buy a firearm. That as long as you aren’t a felon you can buy whatever you want. That is flatly untrue – completely false.

When purchasing from a licensed dealer, these are the questions:

Are you the actual buyer of the firearm? Are you under indictment in any court for a felony? Have you ever been convicted in any court of a felony? Are you a fugitive from justice? Are you an unlawful user of any controlled substance? Have you ever been adjudicated as a mental defective OR been committed to a mental institution? Have you been dishonorably discharged from the Armed Forces? Are you subject to a restraining order? Have you ever been convicted in any court of domestic violence? Have you ever renounced your United States citizenship? Are you an alien illegally in the United States?

If the answer is ‘yes’ to any of these (except the ‘are you the actual buyer’) it’s against Federal law for the customer to receive or possess a firearm. Lying on this form is in itself a felony under Federal law, and may also violate state and/or local law.

In addition, if you are buying a handgun or a military-style semi-automatic rifle within the state of Minnesota you also need either a handgun purchasing permit or a Minnesota carry permit. The carry permit mandates a training class and both of these permits mandate a background check by local law enforcement. 

Dan Gable

Cambridge

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