A bunch of gun-rights activists don't want us to tighten the state's lax rules for purchasing a firearm. Right now, there's a loophole that allows anyone to buy a gun at a gun bazaar, or purchase one directly from a stranger, without undergoing any kind of background check. So if you're a convict with a penchant for mass homicide, the door is wide open to buy a gun this way. Again, the gun-rights activists are fine with that. The state's Democratically controlled house couldn't even muster the votes to pass a background-check bill this year—even though we've seen numerous mass gun homicides in 2012, there are more than 11,000 gun homicides a year in the US, more guns are linked to more homicides, and—most important—states with stricter gun controls have fewer gun homicides.
That's why Christian Sinderman is working as a political consultant for an initiative to require background checks for all gun sales in Washington State. But, he says, "the opponents are taunting us." Sinderman's group, Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility, inserted copies of their petition into The Stranger and Seattle Times this week. Here's a picture of the petition inside The Stranger that's on the stands till tomorrow:
But Second Amendment Foundation hates this initiative. Their leaders are reportedly interested in running their own initiative to ban an expansion of background checks, and they say distributing this petition in the newspaper is a sign that gun-rights activists are desperate. “They must be having trouble getting people to sign their petition,” Phil Watson told the Seattle Times. “Otherwise why spend money on this?”
It seems Watson just doesn't want you opening The Stranger and filling out a petition. But you can. There are spaces for five signatures. So find a copy of the paper, fish out the petition, have your friends fill it out, and mail it in. As for Watson's question—why are gun control advocates doing this? Because restricting guns to people who should legally have guns will save lives.