Thursday, February 28, 2013

Those Darned Paperwork Errors

Someone named Nathan Smit is in a snit because he has picked up the idea that the rights of American citizens are under some kind of threat right now. This is because a Federally-licensed gun shop had to shut down because the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms decided, after an audit, to strip them of their license.

Something in that audit caused the Feds enough alarm to warrant taking this step; they shut down the gun shop precisely because those errors were egregious enough to survive an appeal that the owners of the gun shop weren't willing to file. Milan Hart wrote about how more guns will make American safer back in August; I disagree, but I don't disagree with his right to make a living selling guns.

My personal belief is this--every single small business owner in this country is struggling to survive right now, and shutting them down is not what the government should be doing unless there is a public health or safety issue or if that owner is a crook. I don't think they should have shut down Hart Brothers unless there was something really, really bad in there. They should have given them a chance to fix their issues and continue selling guns. But, I come down on the side of safety. If Southern Minnesota is safer by putting them out of business, then so be it.

So, no one should question Hart's right to sell guns or advocate on behalf of owning guns. It is perfectly legal for Americans to own guns and sell guns; but if you can't abide by Federal regulations when it comes to selling guns, then, like everyone else, you can expect to have to surrender your license. The fact that Hart was not fined or charged with anything (at least nothing has been mentioned in the news about such things) should tell you that the violations were not criminal in nature or severe. They were, however, severe enough to warrant losing the license.

Mr. Smit just wants to blow off steam and say something vague and Tea Party-ish about the Obama Administration. Apparently, during the Bush Administration years, Hart's business went through some audits as well. Perhaps the President of the United States is not so focused on shutting down a family-owned gun shop in rural Minnesota.

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