A coalition of gun control supporters in Chicago have filed a lawsuit against the surrounding communities of Lyons, Riverdale, and Lincolnwood for not infringing deeply enough on the rights of citizens who want to purchase firearms.
Two mothers who lost sons to gun violence joined ministers and an activist Tuesday in a lawsuit against three Chicago suburbs, alleging that weak oversight of gun shops has allowed criminals to easily obtain weapons flowing into a city besieged by gun violence.
The lawsuit accuses Lyons, Riverdale and Lincolnwood communities of violating the civil rights of residents in Chicago’s largely African American neighborhoods by failing to take concrete steps to make sure gun stores are not selling weapons to people who shouldn’t be allowed to carry them.
“Those illegal firearms are flowing into a pocket of communities violating the civil rights of the individuals who reside there, who are afraid to go near their windows or let their children play in the park, much less their own yards,” said Kathleen Sances, a member of the Coalition for Safe Chicago Communities, one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit.
Five individuals – including two ministers and two mothers whose children were victims of gun violence – joined the lawsuit that demands the communities to improve the oversight of the businesses and implement security measures the stores must implement.
Let’s look at just how absurd and frivolous this lawsuit is as a matter of law.
To buy a gun in Illinois, one must first obtain a Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card, which is issued by the Illinois State Police only after federal and state background checks. FOID cards are only issued to Illinois residents who have a valid Illinois driver’s license or state-issued identification card. Those under the age of 18 who wish to apply for a FOID card must have a parent’s signature on the application, and the parent must be eligible for a FOID card as well. Once obtained, the FOID card is good for ten years, and enables FOID card carriers to to purchase, possess, and transport firearms and ammunition.
Citizens must have their FOID card to buy firearms or ammunition at gun stores in Lyons, Riverdale, and Lincolnwood, just as they do anywhere else in Illinois.
Illinois residents may not do so much as pick up a firearm in an Illinois gun store without first presenting an Illinois State Police-issued FOID card to the clerk. Residents with a valid FOID card above the age of 18 can purchase a rifle or shotgun after a 24 hour waiting period. Residents with a valid FOID card who are 21 or older may purchase a handgun, and have to wait 72 hours to take possession of it.
Each and every sale made by a Federal Firearms License (FFL) holder, the purchaser must complete ATF Form 4473, which collects personal identifying information about the prospective purchaser. Despite the constant lies of gun control supporters, FFLs must have a Form 4473 filled out of every gun they sell, without exception, wherever they sell firearms. It doesn’t matter if they sell a gun inside a retail gun store, from their homes, or at a gun show.
Yes, folks. The “gun show loophole”is entirely a myth. The same rules apply there as everywhere else.
Once the Illinois resident presents their FOID card and fills out a Form 4473, the FFL will use that information to conduct background checks, as required by law. On the federal level, the FFL calls the FBI NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System) Operations Center, provides their FFL number, and then submits the customer’s information for a federal background check administered by the FBI. This same information is also used on the state level, as the Illinois State Police—the same people who ran state and federal background checks to issue the FOID card in the first place—run another background check to ensure that the purchaser hasn’t become a prohibited person since their FOID card was originally issued. Purchasers must keep their receipt after purchase for a period of ten years, or violate another Illinois law.
Put in the bluntest possible terms, this is a frivolous lawsuit. The apparent goal of the suit is to harass these communities until they pass Chicago-style ordinances that make it impossible for gun shops to do business within these suburbs.
Its very plain to see that the FFLs in Lyons, Riverdale, and Lincolnwood are complying with federal and state laws to the letter, despite onerous regulations imposed on FFLs and purchasers by the state of Illinois.
This bizarre civil rights lawsuit has no merit, and should immediately be dismissed with prejudice by the judge who receives this case.