Poll in anti-gun bastion doesn't go anti-gun way

AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File

There are reasons to be concerned with polls, but they’re still somewhat useful. They’re about the only decent gauge we have on how the general public feels about certain things. That doesn’t mean our rights should be set aside because of those results or anything, but it’s good to know how people feel about a given thing.


Recently, ISO decided that gun stores should get their own code that credit card companies can use to track purchases.

This hasn’t gone over well with the gun rights community for what should be obvious reasons.

However, as the NSSF notes, it’s not going over well with a lot of people.

The recent news about major credit card companies tracking purchases at firearm retailers is ruffling feathers. That is, with everyone except the nation’s largest gun control groups and supporters.

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) announced late last month it created a firearm-specific Merchant Category Code (MCC) and it’s gone over like a lead balloon. In the nation’s Capitol, a news station tried to gauge support for the code. What should’ve been a slam dunk in one of the country’s strictest gun control cities, the exact opposite happened.

Law-abiding Americans see it as nothing more than overreach, even though gun control schemers are praising the code. There has been no definition by the code’s backers as to what “suspicious activity” means. No word on what the financial institutions will do with the information and what stores will specifically be coded. Americans see the ruse.

In Washington, D.C., FOX 5 News polled their audience on the new MCC. They asked, “Do you think credit card companies should track gun sales?” In a city that has some of the country’s most strict gun control laws, and whose citizens overwhelmingly vote for gun control-supportive politicians, the response was resoundingly clear.

All told, 75 percent of respondents voted “No.” That’s crystal clear. Americans understand the code isn’t about safety at all. It’s about tracking them.


Now, this is a small poll, all things considered. Just one city, though a major one.

However, if anti-gun Washington, DC is against something like this, then where do they actually think a move like this will be popular? The short answer, of course, is that it’s not.

Why would it be?

Yes, I know ISO has codes for dozens of other businesses besides gun stores, but the truth is that no one cares about those purchases. There’s no push to control hair dressers or hotel stays. There’s no reason to be concerned about any of those purchases.

Those codes can, however, be helpful in assisting a consumer look at where their money is going. It can serve as a budgeting tool, meaning there’s no real downside for the consumer seeing these purchases tracked, but there can be an upside.

Gun sales are different, especially when the reason stores have their own code is explicitly so those sales can be tracked and potentially reported to authorities. Remember, this wasn’t some random decision that they just happened to make out of the blue, it was reached after politicians and activists pressured ISO to make this change because they wanted to track those purchases.

And the kicker is that even now that they’re doing it, the stated reason is so they can prevent mass shootings isn’t going to pan out. There’s nothing particularly suspicious about mass shooters’ gun purchases at the time they’re making them. It’s only later they appear ominous.


So I’m glad to see this is polling poorly. In truth, it should be.

Join the conversation as a VIP Member