President Obama Calls for Universal Background Checks—Your Thoughts?

In an address Wednesday morning, Obama also announced he would sign 23 executive orders related to gun control, public safety and mental health.

Update, 12:45 p.m.: The National Rifle Association (NRA) issued the following statement in response to President Obama's proposals:

Throughout its history, the National Rifle Association has led efforts to promote safety and responsible gun ownership. Keeping our children and society safe remains our top priority.

The NRA will continue to focus on keeping our children safe and securing our schools, fixing our broken mental health system, and prosecuting violent criminals to the fullest extent of the law. We look forward to working with Congress on a bi-partisan basis to find real solutions to protecting America’s most valuable asset – our children.

Attacking firearms and ignoring children is not a solution to the crisis we face as a nation. Only honest, law-abiding gun owners will be affected and our children will remain vulnerable to the inevitability of more tragedy.


President Obama announced Wednesday he will ask Congress to pass legislation requiring universal background checks for anyone attempting to buy a gun, restore a ban on military-style assault weapons, and limit magazines to seven bullets. 

What do you think of the president's proposals? Tell us in the comments section.

Obama also said he will sign 23 executive orders to enhance background checks, give mental health professionals more options for reporting threats of violence, and providing additional funds to schools to hire resource officers.

Repeatedly mentioning mass shootings in Newtown, CT; Clackamas, OR; and Aurora, CO, Obama said significant enhancements in gun control will come only if people from all parts of the country—including current gun owners—support the changes.

"We have to examine ourselves and our hearts, and ask ourselves, what is important?" he said. "This will not happen unless the American people demand it.”

More details on Obama's proposals can be found in the attached PDF or on a new White House website dedicated to the topic.

Bryan January 23, 2013 at 06:47 AM
Bad analogy John. I don't need a license to speed to protect my home and property. Further, if someone else speeds, I doesn't mean that I need to. It's hardly comparable to the firearm issue.
Bryan January 23, 2013 at 06:49 AM
I recently read an article that contained some interesting points. Whether you agree or disagree, it did remind me of the fact that ranchers along the Mexican border have had to arm themselves with semi automatic rifles to protect themselves from the drug lords who often come onto their property for nefarious purposes. This article I read primarily referenced the minute men who patrol the border but I know for a fact that simple ranchers and home owners have had to form a union to protect themselves from the Mexican gangs. The U.S. government has not provided any protection whatsoever. I don't think I have heard this brought up as part of any discussion at all. People often ask, who needs semi automatic weapons anyhow? Well some U.S. citizens along the gang infested border apparently do.
dexterjibs January 23, 2013 at 07:30 AM
Joe M, you mean like the hyothetical of "right to an abortion"? I have read the Constitution over and over again and never I have found the word "abortion" in the Constitution. You are very cute in your feckless argument about gun rights. Funny cheeky monkey you are.
Joe M January 23, 2013 at 02:59 PM
dexterjibs, I'll ignore your name calling and irrelevant reference to abortion. All that's left is your assumption that each article of the Constitution means exactly what it says. This is factually incorrect. I don't know if you are ignorant of this, or just pretending to be ignorant when it suits your agenda, but I'll assume the former. The Supreme Court is vested with the final authority to interpret the Constitution. Whenever their interpretation contradicts or augments a plain text reading, their interpretation prevails. You don't have to like their interpretation, but you are legally bound to it. The Supreme Court has confirmed that the government is allowed to regulate what firearms are legal, who qualifies to purchase one, and is allowed to designate the process for purchasing one. When the government does so, there are always ignorant shouts that they are ignoring the Second Amendment. We allow people to shout their ignorance because the First Amendment protects their right to do so. The rights of the government to regulate firearms is not limitless. We now know, at long last, that a citywide ban on handguns is unconstitutional. We only know that because it's what the Supreme Court decided that in DC v. Heller in 2008. If you're still reading this, I should point out that I am not really addressing these comments to you. Facts are no more likely to persuade you than name calling is likely to persuade me.
John Locatelli January 23, 2013 at 05:26 PM
Hi Bryan-- Sorry---I'm having trouble understanding what your point is. Could you rephrase it? I was simply pointing out that the basis for having any laws, rules or regulations in society is the same across all laws. Even though gun rights and regulations are a very emotional issue for most of us that is no reason to exempt them from the sound reasoning that is the basis for a society that is held together by laws.


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