proposed laws

PA Bill Number: HB770

Title: In firearms and other dangerous articles, prohibiting certain assault weapons.

Description: In firearms and other dangerous articles, prohibiting certain assault weapons. ...

Last Action: Resolution to discharge committee from further consideration of this bill presented

Last Action Date: May 25, 2022

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Responding to Texas Incident, Biden Admits Gun Control Didn't Work :: 01/18/2022

In the aftermath of the Texas hostage incident, Joe Biden acknowledged that when criminals get their guns “on the street,” there is no way to stop them.

Regardless of the ultimate source of the handgun carried by now-deceased Colleyville, Texas synagogue hostage-taker Malik Faisal Akram, a remark by Joe Biden in the aftermath was an acknowledgment that gun control laws he and others have advocated do not keep guns out of the wrong hands.

Responding to questions from reporters, Biden admitted, “The idea of background checks are critical, but you can’t stop something like this if someone’s on the streets buying something from somebody else on the streets.”

It may have been a rare moment of candor from the Delaware Democrat, who has spent his career in Washington, D.C. pushing various gun control schemes. For Biden to acknowledge people with bad intentions will somehow obtain firearms through illicit means is news that does not follow the narrative. Perhaps that is why not all news agencies reported it. But enough of them did.

Akram was a British citizen. He took four hostages at the Congregation Beth Israel, allegedly claiming he had a bomb, though none was reportedly found. He did have a pistol, however, and Biden told reporters, “Allegedly – I don’t have all the facts, nor does the attorney general – but allegedly the assertion was he got the weapons on the street.”

Still, the president insisted background checks are “critical.” And, according to Reuters, he also quickly fell back on popular rhetoric asserting, “And it’s because of the failure of us to focus as hard as we should and as consistent as we should on gun purchases, gun sales, ghost guns, and a whole range of things that I’m trying to do.”

But none of that would have prevented Akram from having the gun if he bought it “on the street.”

Much is already known about Akram. Published reports say a man identifying himself as the dead man’s brother asserted on Facebook that Akram “had suffered from mental health problems.” He allegedly took hostages in an effort to gain the freedom of a convicted female terrorist, Aafia Siddiqui. She is a Pakistani neuroscientist who was arrested and imprisoned more than a decade ago. She is known as “Lady Al-Qaeda” and was convicted of attempting to kill U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan.

Akram was fatally shot after law enforcement entered the synagogue after the hostages were able to escape. Video showed the suspect briefly in a doorway, apparently holding the handgun after the hostages escaped. This followed a standoff Saturday night that continued for several hours.

Biden and other gun control proponents put considerable emphasis on background checks as a way to prevent criminals from getting guns. The Texas incident and Biden’s own words illustrate how that doesn’t work, and has not worked in places such as Chicago, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and elsewhere that murder rates have spiked in the past two years since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and efforts to defund police agencies and reduce police manpower following the death of George Floyd in 2020.

The embarrassing truth is that criminals do not go through background checks, and they do not obtain firearms by any means that would require a background check.

According to Fox News, police in Great Britain have arrested two teens in connection with the Texas incident, but there has been scant information about how they may be connected.

There is no small irony in Biden’s weekend remarks, considering a White House Briefing Room “Fact Sheet” released last month just before the holidays, detailing the president’s gun control efforts in 2021. Biden’s efforts, according to the statement, included work on so-called “red flag” legislation, promotion of “safe storage,” the launch of a “multijurisdictional firearms trafficking strike force,” and all sorts of other stuff, none of which prevented Akram from obtaining a gun. The origin of the pistol will doubtless be revealed shortly.

By no small coincidence, so-called “smart guns” are back in the news, and it may be only a matter of time before anti-gunners suggest that if such “single-user” firearms were mandated, the Colleyville incident might not have occurred.

According to The Hill, a company called LodeStar is planning to introduce a 9mm pistol dubbed the LS9 sometime later this year. The report said this pistol “incorporates fingerprint or face technology, radio frequency identification (RFID) and a PIN pad embedded in the grip.”

Such efforts have so far not fared well in the public marketplace, where gun buyers want firearms that will work first time every time. In an emergency, there is no room for failure.