Your Voice | Getting gun laws right

A Wharton professor responds to claims made by CeasefirePA's director

· February 28, 2012, 9:58 pm   ·  Updated February 28, 2012, 10:01 pm

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In an article on Feb. 8, Max Nachman, director of CeasefirePA, defends Philly’s Stolen Handgun Reporting Law by asserting that people selling or giving away guns illegally cannot be prosecuted. This is patently false. In Pennsylvania, all handgun transfers must be executed via a federally licensed dealer (FFL). Not doing so constitutes a felony, for which one can be prosecuted. Nachman also asserts that the NRA’s efforts to prevent municipalities from passing their own gun laws is an effort to “change the rules “ just for the NRA. False again. The Pennsylvania constitution states that “ No county, municipality, or township may in any manner regulate the lawful ownership, possession, transfer, or transportation of firearms …” (18 Pa. C. S., sec. 6010). What the NRA wants is uniform enforcement of the Pennsylvania consitution across the entire state. Nachman should read up on existing gun laws before advocating new ones.

Nicholas Gonedes is Wharton professor. His email address is gonedes@wharton.upenn.edu.

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