If you follow gun stuff, you’ve been hearing a lot about universal background checks. So let’s get the lay of the land. This article is especially for people who are roughly aware of the issue but don’t know the details of it, or the details of why it’s a debate at all.
And yeah, why is it a debate? The question “Would you favor or oppose background checks on all potential gun buyers?” really does poll at 90% support. That’s surprising. You can’t get 90% of people to agree on a flavor of ice cream, let alone a gun law.
What’s going on here? There are three key questions to answer:
If universal background checks have 90% support, why haven’t they already become law?
Why does each side insist on a path that the other side genuinely believes is insane? Why does each side only try to win by force?
Is there a law that will give everyone what they want at the same time? What would that look like?
Let’s answer them one by one.