I was reading the Chicago Tribune online this morning and came across a short Reuters article that should make us all tremble.
The article says the federal government has revoked the license of the gun store that sold a firearm to the mother of Adam Lanza, the 20-year-old who shot up the elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, last December. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms will not say why the license was revoked just days after the shooting. The news has only just come out.
The article ends by noting the guns Lanza used “were all legally purchased and registered.” Does the government shut down car dealers who legally sell cars to people who later use them in drug dealing, murders, rapes, kidnappings, bank robberies, prostitution, and other crimes?
Why hasn’t the government shut down the car dealer who sold the car that Lanza used to drive to the school to commit his crime? It’s almost impossible to imagine Lanza would have been able to get to that school without a car. Almost surely he’d have been stopped if he had been walking down a sidewalk in broad daylight carrying an AR-15 rifle, two handguns, multiple magazines for the rifle and the handguns, and hundreds of rounds of ammo.
There is no indication the gun store did anything illegal. Does law protect us anymore? Or can government punish us if the right people in the right places want to punish us, even when we follow the law? Unless the ATF produces proof of illegal firearms transactions by the gun store, we must conclude the answer to the first question is “no” and to the second question is “yes.”
Here’s the Reuters story in its entirety:
(Reuters) – The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms said on Friday it had revoked the federal license of a Connecticut gun retailer that sold a weapon to the mother of Adam Lanza, who killed 26 people at an elementary school in December.
The agency on December 20 revoked the license of Riverview Gun Sales in East Windsor, Connecticut, ATF spokeswoman Debora Seifert said. The revocation was reported in The Journal News, of Westchester County, New York, on Friday.
“We did revoke their federal firearms license,” she said. The agency did not publicly disclose a reason for the closure.
A woman who answered the telephone at Riverview on Friday, and did not give her name, confirmed the store had sold a weapon to Lanza’s mother, Nancy, and that its license had been revoked. She declined further comment.
Nancy Lanza was her son’s first victim in the December 14 attack. He shot her in their family home before driving to Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown, where he gunned down 20 young children and six adults before shooting himself dead.
The weapons Adam Lanza, 20, used in the attack were all legally purchased and registered.