Bill Aims to Remove Race, Ethnicity Question from Gun Form

Bill Aimes to Remove Race, Ethnicity Question From Gun Form
The FIREARM Act would make the race/ethnicity question on BATFE Form 4473 optional instead of required.

If you've bought a handgun in the past few years, you've had to fill out a 4473 Form, on which you've had to check boxes next to questions about your race and ethnicity. A new bill introduced in the House of Representatives would removed these reporting requirements on BATFE background checks for firearms purchases.

Introduced by Reps Diane Black and Ted Poe, the FIREARM Act (Freedom From Intrusive Regulatory Enforcement of Arbitrary Registration Mandates) would make those questions optional on the ATF Form 4473, removing what supporters of the bill call a "back-door" form of gun control, according to this story on FreeBeacon.com..

"You shouldn't have to answer 20 questions to Uncle Sam in order to get your firearm, it should be your Second Amendment right to do that," Black said. "The race and ethnicity requirement on the background check is not necessary."

The BATFE insists they don't do anything with the information, according to the story.

"ATF does not collect that information," said Corey Ray, a spokesperson for the bureau. "We do not compile it, review it, analyze it, or store it in any capacity, in any way. And we have no plans to."

If firearms dealers don't make sure the sections are filled out, the form is technically considered incomplete.

Black says firearms dealers can lose their licenses if they don't make sure the information is filled out. But the BATFE says there is a long process of warnings and communications before a license would be revoked, and the revocations are rare, with less than one percent of the 10,429 firearms compliance inspections made last year resulted in a license revocation.

Black does raise a very valid point, however:

"They say they don't use that information for anything in particular. So if that's the case, then they don't really need to have the information," she said.