From almost the time it opened in 1998, Shawano Gun and Loan has been in trouble with federal authorities.The story goes on to describe the similarities between these guys and the Badger gang. What I can't understand is how truly legitimate gun owners can support this nonsense. Don't these guys give all of you a bad name? I, for one, keep saying so. Don't you think other people see it that way?
After repeatedly warning the store about missing records and other violations, the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives took the unusual step of revoking its license in 2007.
Nearly three years later, the case is tied up in federal court in Green Bay where an appeal could grind on for years.
And the store continues to sell guns - thousands of them each year - with the ATF's blessing.
What's more, the owner told the ATF that he might transfer the operation to his nephew. That could keep the store operating and erase the violations and revocation - similar to the scenario that unfolded in 2006 at the West Milwaukee store that has sold every gun used to wound six Milwaukee police officers in the past 2 ½ years.
The delaying tactics, stretching out the court appearances so as to continue the illegal practices, are the tactics of criminals not legitimate businessmen. Blatantly violating rules and guidelines and simply relinquishing the licence so your nephew with a clean record can take over the business is the trick of a white-collar criminal.
When the misguided gun owners who defend and support these practices actually result in weaker and less effective laws, everyone suffers, everyone pays for that.
Straw buying is a crime - for the buyer and the clerk who knowingly makes the sale. It is a federal felony but remains a misdemeanor in Wisconsin after the Legislature failed to pass a law making it a felony this year.
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