American Gun Laws 2

12.18.12 4:00 PM ET

Did you know that you can lawfully buy a gun even if you are on the FBI terrorist watch list?

Let the NRA explain why:

[T]he “watchlist” is not limited to people guilty of “terrorism” or who are suspected of other acts serious enough to warrant their arrest. It broadly includes people “known or reasonably suspected to be or have been engaged in conduct constituting, in preparation for, in aid of, or related to terrorism,” including those only “being preliminarily investigated to determine whether they have links to terrorism” and those “for whom the FBI does not have an open terrorism investigation.”

The NRA is further concerned that the watch list might be extended to include "right-wing" extremists, including:

  • Americans who disagree with the policies of the Obama Administration and who encourage others to disagree with such policies, or who believe in federalism;
  • Americans who post their political opinions on the Internet;
  • Americans who oppose gun control and who, in anticipation of a new push for federal gun control, buy firearms and ammunition;
  • Americans who disagreed with the Brady Act and semi-automatic firearm ban, and the FBI’s and BATFE’s actions at Ruby Ridge, Idaho, and Waco, Texas, in the 1990s; and
  • Americans whose religious beliefs hold that there will occur a time of hardship accompanied by the rise of unscrupulous or evil political leaders.

The NRA's case here is a fascinating demonstration of the way in which American law works hardest to keep guns in the hands of those least to be trusted with them.