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A brand new gun background check bill that is currently undergoing review, could make Hawaii the first state in the United States to implement a new measure that would list down the names of all gun owners into the FBI database. This new system could them automatically alert the authorities if a registered owner has been arrested anywhere else in the country.
The new “groundbreaking” measure, as described by the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence staff Attorney, could become something that might propagate into the other states should it become successful in the island state. Allison Anderman mentions that if the bill is passed, it could make Hawaii the leader in safe gun laws in the United States.
Currently, no other states enter the names of gun owners on any databases, and gun owners only have to go through a background check when they register a new firearm. Police have no way of knowing if someone has been disqualified of owning a firearm at any given time. The only way they would know is if the previously disqualified gun owner would register a new firearm. Honolulu Police Department head, Maj. Richard Robinson, explains that the new system would greatly benefit their department.
“We were only discovering things by accident. They happen to come register another firearm, we run another background check, and then we find out they’re a prohibited person.” Robinson explains.
The bill of course still has a lot of hurdles to go through before it is passed into law. The bill needs to undergo a legal review process by different departments, including the Attorney General’s Office, before Gov. David Ige signs it into law. According to the bill, the cost of the new system which will input names into the database will be shouldered by the gun owners through a yet to be defined fee during the firearm registration process.
Some gun owners have expressed their concerns regarding the new bill and mentions that it would actually infringe on their constitutional right.
“This is an extremely dangerous bill. Exercising a constitutional right is not inherently suspicious. Hawaii will now be treating firearms as suspect and subject to constant monitoring.” said Amy Hunter for the National Rifle Association. ”