Illegal possession of guns ripe target
Gun rights advocates like to emphasize support for the lawful possession of firearms, so why aren’t they calling for greater enforcement of laws restricting illegal possession of guns?
According to Bloomberg News, as many as 200,000 Americans may have lost the right to own firearms but still possess them. California is the only state that monitors and disarms gun owners who no longer qualify. Kamala Harris, California’s attorney general, wants the state to become a national model.
What do we do about the guns that are already in the hands of persons who, by law, are considered too dangerous to possess them? she asked in a letter to Vice President Biden after the Newtown, Conn., school shooting in December.
A no-gun list in California was compiled by cross-referencing registered gun owners with databases of newly convicted felons, those under a domestic violence restraining order or deemed mentally unstable. Agents last year collected about 2,000 weapons, 117,000 rounds of ammunition and 11,000 high-capacity magazines. Almost 20,000 gun owners there, however, have had convictions or have had involuntary mental-health commitments since they first registered their firearms.
FBI finessing the art of the steal
Many Americans – art lovers in particular – were likely left a bit flummoxed by the FBI’s strategy in announcing its significant investigative progress in the 1990 theft of 13 priceless works of art from a Boston museum.
We know who did it, the FBI said – exactly 23 years later. We just don’t know where the paintings are.
Reading between the lines, it seemed the feds were inviting one or more of the thieves to come forward without much risk.
The statute of limitations for the burglary itself has long since passed. Perhaps one or more of the thieves could still be charged with possession of stolen property – if they still have the paintings – but a U.S. attorney said there is a very strong possibility someone coming forward would receive immunity for that crime, too.
Another theory: An innocent person who may have seen one of the stolen works – including two Rembrandt paintings – might be more willing to call authorities knowing the feds already knew the thieves’ identity.