A recent visit to an area gun store, Bull’s Eye Sports Shop, resulted in a conversation concerning the current wait for NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System). Although wait time often varies depending on time of year, time of day, and location, my personal experience has always been good. To date, I’ve never had to wait for a firearm but have simply breezed through the NICS check unscathed and with nary a moment lost. This has now become a “jinx” moment thanks to the fact that there are firearms waiting for me at Bull’s Eye – and the current wait time is phenomenally long.
NICS is, of course, the nationwide system in place to make sure people who buy guns are legally allowed to do so. When a possible sale takes place, the first thing a gun store like Bull’s Eye does is have the customer fill out a Firearms Transaction Record, Form 4473. That form includes spaces for everything from the customer’s full name, birthdate, height and weight to a list of questions ranging from asking whether the person is a fugitive from justice. It quickly becomes a tedious form especially when you’ve filled it out more times than you care to admit, but it does serve a purpose. Also on Form 4473 is a space for the NICS transaction number, which is the number verifying the buyer has indeed passed a NICS check. If NICS fails to provide an answer within 3 business days, the FFL may go ahead and sell the gun to the customer although they are not required to do so. Barriers to passing NICS include anyone who:
- Has been convicted in any court of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year
- Is a fugitive from justice
- Is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance
- Has been adjudicated as a mental defective or committed to a mental institution
- Is an alien illegally or unlawfully in the United States or who has been admitted to the United States under a non-immigrant visa
- Has been discharged from the Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions
- Having been a citizen of the United States, has renounced U.S. citizenship
- Is subject to a court order that restrains the person from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner or child of such intimate partner
- Has been convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence
- Is under indictment for a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year
(Taken from the FBI’s website covering NICS FAQs)
Despite the fact that it may seem like a long list, it rarely takes long for NICS to respond- although delays certainly happen. Mistakes happen, too; such as instances where a customer’s name matches the name of someone who is not allowed to have firearms and NICS fails to realize they are not one and the same person. In those cases, there is an appeals process although, interestingly, the FBI suggests giving NICS 30 days from the day you first submitted the Form 4473 before you file the appeal. Unexplainable delays sometimes take place as well. For example, I know a prominent outdoor writer who has an impeccable record and has never been denied a firearm but who does experience odd wait times. When it comes to handguns, he’s able to take them home immediately, passing NICS quickly and easily. But for long guns there’s often a wait of a few days. This baffles everyone involved- especially considering the fact that if there’s an issue it’s normally over handguns, not long guns, and also because NICS has admitted openly that there is no actual problem. They themselves cannot explain the random wait times. So no, NICS is not a perfect system. But it does typically get the job done and it’s something you’re going to go through not only at your local gun store but also at gun shows.
“Stroke of the pen. Law of the land. Kinda cool.” (Paul Begala, former President Bill Clinton’s advisor to the NY Times regarding Executive Orders, 1998)
Back to the original point: the current wait time for NICS is now pushing their 3-day limit regularly. According to Bull’s Eye, which is located in Wisconsin, things began slowing down noticeably approximately one week prior to Christmas which is not too unusual in itself. However, the rate at which it began to slow was significant and, instead of picking back up as the holiday came to an end, it has only worsened. (And if you’re thinking this is a regional problem, it is not. Tylar, the manager at On Target in Tennessee, verified that his store is experiencing significant wait times as well.) The reason for the slowdown is obvious: NICS is overloaded. It’s happened before, typically taking place immediately following mass shootings, threats from politicians to enact extreme gun control measures, and, yes, around holidays. But it’s the political angle that has gained considerable ground when it comes to firearm sales, especially since 2008. It’s been said before but it bears repeating: Barack Hussein Obama is the greatest gun salesman ever to sit in the Oval Office.
“We’ve switched the rules of the game. We’re not trying to do anything legislatively.” (Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt to the Washington Times regarding Executive Orders, 1999)
Since 2008 gun sales have experienced the usual ups and downs but, overall, the firearms industry has enjoyed a good run. Sales in general have literally doubled since Obama was sworn in. The current wait for NICS is undoubtedly being spurred by Obama’s push for far greater firearms restrictions- gun control measures he plans to implement with the help of an executive order. Executive Orders are something else Obama is good at; not only has Barack Obama managed to issue more Executive Orders than any other President of the United States, he’s found a way to issue even more without everyone realizing it. You see, there is another form of Executive Order known as a presidential or executive memorandum. A memorandum is almost exactly like an order, with one significant difference: a presidential or executive memorandum does not require a “citation of authority” while an Executive Order does.
What is a citation of authority? That’s a statement of what law the action is based upon, as in what legal precedent is being used as a basis for pushing the memorandum through. In that way, the presidential or executive memorandum allows for even more opinion and bias than an Executive Order does, and it’s just as legally binding. According to the Justice Department, the only way for future administrations to do away with a memorandum is for that administration’s president to officially and explicitly revoke them. Memorandum are not numbered like Executive Orders are and Obama leaned heavily on memorandums during his first term. While he still uses both methods now, during his second term, he seems to have lost any prior inhibitions about signing whatever Executive Order he feels like doing on any given day.
One of the simplest, clearest explanations regarding what an Executive Order is comes from “This Nation”: “Executive Orders (EOs) are legally binding orders given by the President, acting as the head of the Executive Branch, to Federal Administrative Agencies. Executive Orders are generally used to direct federal agencies and officials in their execution of congressionally established laws or policies. However, in many instances they have been used to guide agencies in directions contrary to congressional intent.
Not all EOs are created equal. Proclamations, for example, are a special type of Executive Order that are generally ceremonial or symbolic, such as when the President declares National Take Your Child To Work Day. Another subset of Executive Orders are those concerned with national security or defense issues. These have generally been known as National Security Directives. Under the Clinton Administration, they have been termed “Presidential Decision Directives.”
Executive Orders do not require Congressional approval to take effect but they have the same legal weight as laws passed by Congress. The President’s source of authority to issue Executive Orders can be found in the Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution which grants to the President the “executive Power.” Section 3 of Article II further directs the President to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.” To implement or execute the laws of the land, Presidents give direction and guidance to Executive Branch agencies and departments, often in the form of Executive Orders.”
Congress has the power to override an Executive Order. It doesn’t happen often, but it is possible. A 2/3 majority is required to overturn an Executive Order and that rarely happens in cases involving issues like foreign policy. However, when it comes to a hot-button issue such as gun control, the possibility for congressional involvement increases exponentially. Even if Congress does get involved, what are the odds of a 2/3 majority vote to do away with whatever anti-gun Executive Order Obama comes up with? Not good. For years now, the current administration has worked tirelessly creating a leftist, liberal-heavy White House, and that means far more politicians in favor of gun control.
Executive Orders have been questioned more than a few times due to the simple fact that they could easily allow a President of the United States to become a virtual dictator. After all, it’s really quite simple: an Executive Order is a presidential proclamation backed by the full strength of the law without need for congressional approval. Back in 1999 an attempt was made by none other than Ron Paul to pass H.R. 2655: Separation of Powers Restoration Act. H.R. 2655 would have required “the president to issue orders based only on statutory and constitutional authority.” A quick check on the bill’s status shows that subcommittee hearings were held on October 28, 1999, and it appears to have been permanently stalled in the 16 years since. So, who is going to hold the current POTUS in check? Well, Congress could do it, but it seems they will not which means there is no one willing to go against Obama’s wishes. No one.
On January 7th, 2016, Barack Hussein Obama will go on national television to discuss his plans for an Executive Order about gun control. He’s chosen Anderson Cooper’s show as the platform which isn’t surprising given that Cooper is on CNN, and both he and the network are overwhelmingly liberal. Obama couldn’t have chosen a more welcoming environment in which to spout his agenda.
It is the final year of Obama’s time in office. He has managed to wrangle two terms in the Oval Office despite a dirt-low approval rating – a rating that’s dropped sharply among those who once supported him. He has managed to keep getting his way, getting his people into positions of power, despite repeated examples of a complete inability to act as president. He has been sitting in that office for 7 years and in this, his final year, there is no reason he should not do whatever the heck he wants. There is no one to stop him, no one to deny him another term, no polls to worry about or voters to appease. The final year tends to be the time during which a president’s true colors finally reveal themselves, so think about this: many of us have seen Obama’s true nature for some time now because he has not bothered to hide it. What does that mean for 2016? What does Obama intend to do? He undoubtedly has a plan and you can be sure that plan involves stripping your Second Amendment rights, among other things. He has said he has no respect for our Constitution as anything but an interesting old document; he has said it, and he has made it crystal clear by his actions.
Wake up, America. If you’re concerned about Obama’s final year of presidency, you should be beside yourself with fear for what comes after. Get involved in the presidential elections. Don’t just cast your ballot, get involved. This is not a time for watching from the sidelines, it is a time for action.
Act. What are you waiting for?
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.
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