Do you favor universal background checks for gun purchases in Minnesota?
Yes. Why allow criminals to legally purchase guns at gun shows?
65 votes (44%)
No. Gun owners should be able to sell firearms to anyone, without restrictions.
84 votes (56%)

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40 comments on this item

Have you stopped beating your wife?

Are you continuing to beat your wife?

Struggling to relate the inanity ... or is it insanity ... or simply ignorance ... with the current "poll".


Orrcountry uses cliche "loaded" questions to imply that the poll questions are loaded. Both questions accurately pinpoint what commonly, regularly goes on in gun sales. Orrcountry doesn't seem to approve of either question but I don't see how we can have a sensible, serious discussion of the extremely high gun death toll in this country and ignore key components of the problem. Silly me.

bonfire: As one who has attended numerous gun shows in Orr, Virginia and Duluth, at no time that I witness dubious characters roaming the premises. Since about 85% of all vendors at the Gun Shows are Federally Licensed Dealers and required to do a background check before selling any firearms, I question your assertion that criminals are buying firearms there. I have purchased two firearms I coveted since my youth from Gun Show vendors who were not FLD and they have a good eye for character. Why did I purchase from "private" sellers? I do not want to register my firearms, I do not want the government to know what I bought, from whom I bought it, the serial number or the address where I keep it. It is none of the government's business, anymore than how many kitchen knives my wife has or how many lawnmowers I have. I sense you are an inexperienced gun show critic and I would recommend you attend one at a location near you. I believe you will agree with me thereafter, unless of course you are just afraid of or just don't like guns.

Well, Bonfire, seems you were proven right

Oh jt, once again you have proven ignorance is bliss

I need only note the bliss in your posts.

But a question ... why, or on what grounds/logic do you feel you are right? Much of what you seem to profess and believe in is against the law. Yet I would guess that your array of guns in no way would even interest any but perhaps the most devout anti-gun folks ... and that ain't us.

Orrcountry, You seem to follow the school of thought that if one does not experience an event or action up close and personal or hear it from Fox or Tea Party groups, those events or actions simply do not happen and cannot possibly be true.

We think owning 2 pistols and 4 rifles is more than enough for us. We don't "need" and have no interest in buying any more guns nor have any desire to attend a gun show.

Thinking back to the previous 10 year ban on assault weapons, I don't remember that we gave it much thought at all. It didn't affect our gun ownership in any way and we certainly didn't worry about anyone taking away our non-assault weapons. In fact, I don't have one memory of anyone we know ever worrying about getting their guns confiscated. Were you terrified about gun confiscation from 1994 to 2004 or is this a new paranoia?

I am an independent Finn, nobody influences my opinions or observations. Not FOX News, not folks who attend Tea Parties, not the Obama network PMSNBC, nor talk radio. I do take particular pleasure when my ideas make the news at FOX or on talk radio. Shows I'm right most all the time, jt.

I was not in favor of the ban on rifles that resembled military assault style long arms. While that style of firearm does not appeal to me, it does to those who are varmint hunters, such as coyote, and are frequently used by hunters for that purpose. Using the term "assault weapons" without a full description of what constitutes that firearm is an attempt to conjure up negative attitudes toward them by the uninformed public. Inner city people, those who never had a rural lifestyle experience, are afraid of the term "assault weapons" and so the Obama/Feinstein/Schumer/Bloomberg crowd use it to scare the daylights out of the general public. I do not support the ban that is being proposed because it is full of red herrings and statistics (jt) show true assault weapons are very rarely used in killings in America.

You should attend a gun show. You will meet very nice people, see a collection of all types of firearms, including antiques. And believe this or not, the vendors and attendees don't shoot each other.

"I do take particular pleasure when my ideas make the news at FOX or on talk radio. Shows I'm right most all the time."

Tempted to send this in to Comedy Central.

Meanwhile, continuing to wait!

Oh, and Bonfire asked some things also.

My spouse and I just took the permit to carry class. I'm going to get a 9 mm. I think those with mental health issues should be the ones giving up some rights( to privacy) rather than the 99.9% of us that are law abiding and will not agree to any further restrictions on our constitutional rights.

Congratulations hard rock! Did you folks take the Utah course, which enables you to carry in all states (except Illinois for now)? Maybe you would care to share the conditions under which you tested for your permit so the underinformed participating in this blog can see how responsible we gun owners are? It's a work in progress with the anti-gunners, but we should make an effort to educate them, even the two digit IQ's.

Struggling to understand how one who preaches absolutely no limitations or controls is now espousing the legal processing, through government, of a very proper and reasonable approach to gun management.

And this "no-gunners" comment. You have zero knowledge as to whether I own any guns or not, and Bonfire already disclosed his. Seems perhaps someone indeed is ignoring the world around him.

So, Mr. Bonfire, your earlier statement is clearly born out.

And as a reminder, "What every regime considers a troublemaker is, more often than not, someone who persists in making a fuss about the trouble the regime has caused, but prefers to have swept under the rug, rather than openly examined and debated. This nation began by irrepressible troublemakers." Sydney J. Harris, Thoughts at large, Boston Globe.

I believe this is all Bonfire asked for ... and instead ...

Yes ... "examined and debated"!

And I found the Finish gun laws interesting ... but that would not apply here!!!

I'm perplexed, jt. I thought bonfire and I were having discussion. Then you have to butt in and destroy a good, productive conversation. Why don't you just butt out?

bonfire is alleging criminals are buying their guns at gun shows. I disputed that based on personal experience and attendance at gun shows. bonfire doesn't want to go to a gun show for first hand experience, instead he purports to know all about them without ever attending one. Kind of like Obama/Feinstein/Schumer/Bloomberg...they don't go to gun shows but purport to know what goes on at one. I left bonfire with the offer to attend a gun show, or several of them. He doesn't want to.

I am unaware of any law governing the finish on my firearms. I guess it truly does not apply here!!!

Do you ever, Mr. Orrcountry, consider reading your own comments and trying to make sense out of them? Might be a worthy effort.

(Start with the realization that perhaps ... just perhaps ... you have not attended each and every "gun show" to monitor the visitors and activities ... and to ascertain that indeed none were ever visited by the ladies and gentlemen you name above. Just for starters. That is all I would ask. And of course, more than I will expect.)


Evidently your own personal experience at gun shows justifies you purporting that illegal gun purchases don't happen at gun shows across the country but jt beat me to it on that sticky wicket.

Stolen guns used in crimes only amount to 10% to 15%. The most common way guns get into the wrong hands is through straw purchase sales. Ex: 20% of licensed California dealers agreed to sell handguns to researchers posing as illegal straw buyers. The next biggest source of illegal gun transactions are sales made by legally licensed but corrupt at-home and commercial gun dealers. Nearly 40% of legal gun sales involve privates sales not requiring background checks. I suppose this has not been going on for long time either because you haven't personally seen it with your own eyes. To be fair, with 60,000 federally licensed dealers alone, it would be a tad difficult for you to personally observe all of them.

A few other things that may be off your radar screen:

A large percentage of Americans, 92% CBS poll, 91% Fox poll, favor universal background checks for any gun buyer.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation, trade group for leading gun manufacturers will not oppose expansion of background checks. The president, Steve Sanetti, "From the commercial side, we're already there, and we've been there, and we were the ones that have been the strongest proponents of an effective, complete background check."

Police depts across the country are very concerned about the long waiting periods to get ammunition for gun training for their officers.

Only 4% of violent crimes can be attributed to people with mental illnesses. There is much more violent crime associated with alcohol and drugs.

2011, nearly 10 times more people shot and killed in arguments than by civilians trying to stop a crime.

For every one time a gun is used in self-defense in the home, there are 7 assaults or murders, 11 suicide attempts and 4 accidents. In one experiment, 1/3 of 8 to 12 year old boys who found a handgun pulled the trigger.

Then there is domestic violence. There is far too little discussion about the huge problem of anger issues resulting in violence. In 2010, nearly 6 times more women were shot by husband, boyfriends, ex-partners than murdered by male strangers.

For all these reasons and more, I am in favor of universal background checks along with over 90% of Americans and can't imagine how anyone can logically and sensibly be against it.

bonfire: First of all, since you have never attended a gun show, all you are saying is that other people "say" criminals are buying guns there. I reiterate that private sellers at gun shows, even though they do not have to complete a background check, size up the customer very well. If they didn't, they would then have to give up their private sales and pay the government fees to become a FLD. Several FLDs gave up their licenses when additional fees and reporting requirements were imposed on them by the government. This only left the big dealers in the market.

The black market is the source of most illegally used firearms, not the 15% of the private vendors at gun shows. Now you are right, I have attended about 6 gun shows, all in the local area. But you haven't attended one. Therefore, I assert that I am in a better position to comment on gun shows than someone who doesn't. Fair enough?

The polls by the national media vary. When the simple question of whether you support "universal background checks", the public says yes. But once the details of the "universal background check" being considered by Schumer and Feinstein are offered to the person taking the poll, the answer goes down from the numbers you cited to about 35% in approval. Once people learn that the background information will be kept forever by the government, rather than destroyed after the person clears a background check, once they learn that the feds will impose a gun registry system on all gun owners (giving the government all information about you, the gun you own, the serial number and who you transfer it to), people decide "universal background checks" isn't what they thought they would be.

Police departments having a hard time getting ammo for their departments have only themselves to thank. Once Obama/Feinstein/Schumer/Bloomberg began these bizarre gun law proposals, people rushed to stock up on ammo, thereby creating a shortage. If the Police Chiefs would only join the Sheriff's Association and refuse to support the type of gun laws being proposed, things would settle down. The ammo manufacturers could rebuild inventories, and the police will have their ammo. They are responsible for the problem they created for themselves.

I am against violent crime, but I don't share your passion to focus only on guns. We have millionaire nutcases in Hollywood producing and acting in violent films, we have violent video games (which many of the recent killers admit to having watched) that contributes to violent crimes, we have housewives with a drawer full of kitchen knives which are used to commit murders, we have the problem of mental health issues that have been ignored. Show me you are serious about stemming violent crimes by joining me in lambasting the aforementioned and their responsibility for those violent crimes.

Otherwise, it just appears to me you hate people with guns (notwithstanding yourself and your arsenal) and you want to get even with people like me that support responsible gun legislation, such as that now proposed in the Minnesota Legislature, that addresses the "straw man" purchase. You should support this legislation, but two big city democrats who chair the House and Senate committees won't give the bill a hearing. Therefore, we will not get anything passed, which I hope makes you happy. You can't have it all your way in politics, which is the art of negotiation.

Bonfire ... seems to me that since the man simply will not even discuss the topic with reason ... only fire off his salvos (oh, perhaps not the right reference in this discussion) that offering fact after fact after fact against opinion and paranoid bias is fruitless.

I say let the man rant and rave. Over and out.

Orrcountry, This is dumb of me to do this but studies have been done on violent movies connection with real world violence since the 50's. Numerous studies here and in other countries have studied violent video games and real world violence and have not found a correlation, let alone a causation between the two. Countries that view the same violent video games such as the Netherlands, Japan, Singapore has low violent crime rates. In 2011, the Supreme Court struck down a California law, 7 to 2, restricting sale & rental of violent video games to minors citing the existing research. There are very good reasons for parents to monitor media their children are exposed to but Wayne LaPierre and the NRA using violent movies and video games as scapegoats to keep raking in the dough isn't one of them.

The US has the highest personal gun ownership rate in the world. With just over 30,000 gun deaths a year costing us billions of dollar, the "more guns make us safer" contention doesn't seem to be working out very well.

Private sellers being able to "size up a customer very well" may be your experience but using intuition to size up a stranger as ok to sell to without a background check sounds like a crapshoot to me.

jt, beat me to it again. Facts, schmacts, can't be trusted. Those are just things "other people say". Gut feelings rule.

Over and out.

bonfire: when you selectively use facts from your anti-gun sources which are, of course, slanted to reflect your point of view, remember this adage:

Statistics never lie, but liars use statistics.

Be careful of the stats you use.


Harvard medical researchers just published a scholarly paper in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine, claiming that more firearm laws in a state are associated with a lower rate of gun homicides and suicides. However, examination of their data and research methods shows the opposite.

McMaster University researcher Caillin Langmann, MD, PhD noted that the Harvard authors' own best analysis:

* Does not show that states with more gun laws have fewer gun deaths

* Demonstrates that "assault weapon" bans have no effect on homicide

* Demonstrates that laws prohibiting guns in public places have no effect on homicide

Even more damning, Dr. Garen Wintemute, well known for research advocating gun control, agrees with Dr. Langmann. In his editor invited commentary Wintemute faults the Harvard authors for relying on a state gun law grading system used by the Brady Center (formerly known as Handgun Control, Inc.) and the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. Both of these organizations are dedicated gun control advocates. Using their political ploy in a scientific journal is disgraceful.

Given your adage quoted below to bonfire, seems you are doing exactly that for which you chastise him ...

"bonfire: when you selectively use facts from your anti-gun sources which are, of course, slanted to reflect your point of view, remember this adage:

Statistics never lie, but liars use statistics.

Be careful of the stats you use."


jt: Bugs you, doesn't it?

At least you admit to your own struggle with the difference between facts and opinions. Or does it? Goose ... gander???

jt: Please scroll back and post where I said I admit to my own struggle. What struggle? I quote facts and only facts, and it appears the facts hurt you.

By the way, wasn't it you that advised bonfire not to respond to my posts anymore? What are you doing, I thought you said you were through too? Can't resist, can you?

Ever since my teaching days, I have continued to struggle with dealing with ignorance (look it up ... do not presume). So, yes ... resistance is down. Mea culpa!

Next ... identify for me what you consider fact. I see virtually none. Stuff and nonsense ... but facts ... no.

And if you cannot identify where and how you have admitted ... far be it from me to try to better inform.

If you cannot see fact, perhaps I can post in CAPS.


You can't better inform...your better days are behind you.

Try once more ... must have been missed ...

"Ever since my teaching days, I have continued to struggle with dealing with ignorance (look it up ... do not presume). So, yes ... resistance is down. Mea culpa!

Next ... identify for me what you consider fact. I see virtually none. Stuff and nonsense ... but facts ... no.

And if you cannot identify where and how you have admitted ... far be it from me to try to better inform."


In 2011, the U of Montreal study was published in the Canadian Journal of Criminology and Justice showing Canadian gun legislation and drops in gun deaths. Langemann, whose study did not include suicides, is an NRA member and Against Gun Registry which explains his odd statement that the gun registry hurts and kills people. I'm guessing he means if only those people had been armed.

You can't just scratch the surface, you have to dig a little deeper. Many websites were mentioning Wintemute as if he was a firm anti-gun legislation advocate. However, those websites left out a lot of what the Boston Children's Hospital study panel including Wintemute actually stated and was printed in JAMA.

The study does not establish cause-and-effect nor which particular gun laws are effective but does suggest a positive relationship between gun control and gun violence. Dr. Eric Fleegler and colleagues analyzed firearm deaths reported to CDCP from 2007 through 2010. Dr. Fleegler said, "It seems pretty clear: If you want to know which of the states have the lowest gun-mortality rates just look for those with the greatest number of gun laws."

They conclude that further study is necessary but there is a big barrier to more study. Dr. Wintemute lamented the chokehold on funding. Even with Obama's recent executive order for CDCP to resume gun violence research that stopped in the 1990's, it is up to Congress to fund it, $10 million. Now you tell me what the chances are that the Republican House will do that.

Take a guess at which gun lobbying group was instrumental in killing research spending millions to do so.

That should be a positive relationship between gun control and gun violence PREVENTION. forgot a key word.

The Center for Disease Control should not get a nickel from the taxpayers to have doctors ask patients if they have a gun in the house or how many guns they have in the house. Obama is a nut case, hell bent to take guns away from law abiding citizens. Heck, he closed the White House for tours to exemplify his goals, even when Greg Bolling, Sean Hannity, Charles Krauthamer and Donald Trump offered to write a check so little school children can tour the White House. Obama is nothing more than an inner city Bully. So don't bring up Republicans to an Independent Finn like me. I wish to the heavens they block any further funding for the CDC until they go revert back to their mission of studying medicine...not who has guns and what they use them for.

There is no such thing as a gun lobbying group. I belong to the National Rifle Association and the Gun Owners of America, my unions, for the sole purpose of upholding my second amendment rights. They have never let me down, unlike the Steelworkers Union to which I was forced to pay dues (neither the NRA or GOA force people to pay, we are given the choice). Noticeably absent in your criticism are the lobbying groups ('bama's buddies) in Hollywood, his multi-billionaire friends that try to buy elections and influence Congress with their agenda, his big labor bosses that funnel millions of dollars of dues paying members money into his causes. Your man Obama is a crook...just like Nixon.

bonfire, you are not going to get any changes in gun laws, us little, poor people are not going to let it happen. You might as well accept that. And I will never vote for any person that is anti-gun and pro-Sierra Club, as I consider both a part of moral decay in our nation.

Furthermore, you did not state that after Florida passed concealed carry legislation, Miami saw a dramatic drop in homicides, yet Chicago, which has the strictest gun laws, has been experiencing a rapid increase in homicides on an annual basis. Guess those examples don't fit your insatiable desire to take guns away from the millions of Americans that own them, does it?

Bonfire ... it just is not worth the time and effort. I defer to my first comment way above as it seems to best fit.

And it's (jt) back again for a last word. Can't quit, you just can't quit.

jt, Yup.

White House tours....bread and circuses.

Wayne LaPierre doesn’t care if he’s called “crazy’’ by gun control advocates — because the National Rifle Association CEO says he’s got millions of red-blooded Americans on his side.

"As you can imagine, I don't get invited to many parties in this town, but that's okay . . . I didn't come here to be popular," LaPierre said in a rousing speech before the Conservative Political Action Conference Friday.

“The political eleites — they may not like it. The liberal media can keep hating on me, but I’m still standing, unapologetic and unflinching in defense of our individual freedom,” he said to applause.

"They can call me crazy, or anything else they want, but the NRA's nearly five million members, and America's 100 million gun owners, will not back down, not ever. I promise you that."

Since the Newtown elementary school massacre, LaPierre has been trashed by liberals for his refusal to back new gun control proposals as well as his call for armed security guards in every school.

But he’s refused to soften his views and reiterated to the CPAC crowd his belief that President Barack Obama’s efforts to put more restrictions on gun ownership is ineffective and a violation of the Constitution.

Urgent: Support Obama's Gun Ban Plan? Vote in Poll

He also slammed politicians as “elites’’ for suggesting self-defense classes for women as an alternative to guns.

"You keep your advice. We'll keep our guns. The one thing a violent rapist deserves to face is a good woman with a gun,’’ he said.

"They call us crazy? They call me crazy and yet the people doing the finger-pointing are saying things that are absolutely bizarre."

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Orrcountry- our carry class was held in Virginia, and cost a reasonable $75.00. Worth every penny. And yes, the class included the information to get a Utah and/or Minnesota permit.

Quote from Ted Turner's son:

Turner noted that he “mostly’’ watches Fox News but “I switch around.’’

Asked by host Steve Malzberg about criticism by CNN host Piers Morgan, a native of Britain, of the Constitution’s Second Amendment, Turner said he’s not impressed.

“Anybody who is trashing the Constitution at any point I got problems with because it’s a pretty simple document and pretty brilliant,’’ he said.

“CNN’s ratings are not great and I don’t think they’re ever going to get back to where they were.’’

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