Saturday, April 13, 2024

New buyers rush to obtain guns

Bruce Polvi fields calls at his shop.

Nearly 40,000 people who bought firearms in Oregon last weekend were driven to gun stores to beat a proposed new law that makes it harder to acquire handguns and rifles, according to a leading dealer in Lincoln County.

Senate Bill 348, which has many of the same restrictions of a successful ballot measure currently stalled in court, appeared to be headed toward approval by the Oregon Legislature at press time.

“Together, these laws have expedited putting a million firearms into the hands of Oregonians who never planned to buy a firearm but thought they should because they felt their rights were being taken away from them,” commented Bruce Polvi, a licensed firearms dealer at Lincoln City Sporting Goods. “This is an end run around the courts, and in many ways it’s worse than Measure 114 that passed by less than a percentage point.”

By Tuesday afternoon, the backlog of background checks from a busy weekend of gun sales in Oregon had dropped to 13,858 from 40,000, reported Polvi after hitting a few keystrokes on his computer to connect with the Oregon State Police. The OSP is responsible for reviewing purchasers who fill out the seven-page application.

“The thing politicians don’t get is a lot of these buyers are first-time firearms owners coming to us after being told the sheriff or police aren’t going to respond in a timely fashion because of cutbacks or officer shortages,” Polvi said.

In addition to requiring permits and completed background checks to buy a gun, Senate Bill 348 includes Measure 114′s large-capacity magazine ban. It would be effective retroactively to Dec. 8, 2022, the date the measure was set to take effect.

The bill goes further than Measure 114, however, by raising the age for gun buyers, creating a new waiting period of 72 hours to obtain a gun and increasing the fees to obtain a gun permit. Polvi said the current waiting time for most purchases at his store is about two hours.

Senate Judiciary Committee chair Floyd Prozanski, D-Eugene, the author of the bill, claimed the wait would address “impulse buying” of guns and reduce potential suicides and domestic violence-related shootings by providing a “cooling-off period” before a customer would get a gun.

The proposed law would also raise the age to get a permit and buy a gun to 21, although buyers aged 18-20 could buy certain hunting rifles and shotguns without a permit until July 2026 as long as they have completed a gun safety course. A seller couldn’t transfer a gun to a customer without waiting 72 hours after receiving a state police approval number following a completed criminal background check.

“All I can say to that senator from Eugene is ‘thanks’,” commented gun clerk Drew Atherton as he serviced a line of buyers three-deep at his counter. “Business has never been better.”

Rick Beasley
Rick Beasley
Special to Homepage, Rick Beasley is an award-winning journalist across newsprint and digital media. Also founder of the Depoe Bay Beacon and Beacon Media.

19 COMMENTS

  1. Well, I think 18 is too young to own a semi-autorifle. We already have background checks, so getting a permit to buy a gun is just stupid. Anyone with
    any worries has already bought what they wanted when 114 passed last Nov.
    Gun control twits are the best gun sales persons around, I just need more space
    for the ammunition .
    A “cooling off” period? Give me a break, I can stay pissed a long time.

    • I owned my first semi-auto .22 at age 12. I shot safely wth friends long before I was 18. Don’t forget men and women in the mililtary who must train on auto and semi-auto weapons and face them in combat. Age is no factor in firearms deaths but criminal actions and mental health crises are. We don’t need more gun control we need more crime control. It’s already against the law to shoot people. (Well, at least most of the time.)

  2. Really if we are a us citizen why do we need a permit? Ok I know a lot of hard core criminals that own guns…. They don’t go by laws or worry about permits….. There is millions of guns in the us and guns don’t kill people…. people kill people…..pull your head out folks…. More laws and rules on top of already present laws ain’t going to work…

  3. The 2nd amendment doesn’t give people permission to own any firearm, it gives you the right to own any firearm you want. Government does not have the right to make decisions like these for the people of the United States. We make our own decisions.

  4. When this passes, until it’s found unconstitutional you will have to get permission from the government to exorcize your constitutional right to own a gun

  5. Second Amendment Right to Bear Arms
    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    “I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery.” – Thomas Jefferson, letter to James Madison, January 30, 1787

    “The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…. Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” – Thomas Jefferson, Commonplace Book (quoting 18th century criminologist Cesare Beccaria), 1774-1776

    I see no place for any law that allows any state in infringe on the right to own a firearm or the means to its use.

  6. This so called fast tracked democratic push for gun control is big brother ruling over the citizens rights. It’s done to save their butts to stay in control of our political system

  7. If you are a free U.S. citizen, you already have a protected right. If people truly were concerned about safety, they would have a permit system and training to have a child, have sex, etc. oh wait. A registration to to exercise a guaranteed right is straight up communism.

  8. Arrest the criminals rather than harassment the law abiding ones. Jail those who commit crime while in possession of firearms and make sure they stay gun free….

  9. I can’t say enough good things about Bruce, his family, and business. I’ve been dealing with Bruce for decades. If you need a gun, ammo or accessories, Lincoln City Sporting Goods is the place. Bruce is doing his part to further 2nd Amendment Rights daily. Bruce is an asset to our community and country. Keep up the great work, Bruce and crew!

  10. Another anti-freedom move by tyrannical Democrats. Put people that commit crimes with a gun in jail. That is the only way to lower gun violence. Penalizing honest citizens only shows a desire to disarm the people. Something tyrants want. Not a government set up as a republic.

  11. Passing this bill will have a huge amount of unintended consequences. Many people will become criminals overnight and many more will realize all too late that rights no longer apply in the state of Ory-gone. Do you really think the hundreds of thousands of “high cap” magazines will simply disappear? Like POOF we’re all safe? Delusional at best, outright lies at worst

  12. I know a felon who has been caught twice with a weapon and has served no jail time and has only gotten probation. I have asked the Atorney general why and has refused to answer the question

  13. I have better ideas about how to keep the populace safe, raise the voting age
    to 21, then you can take the cars away from quite a number of people.
    I know we have always had crime, but it wasn’t like this until recently, and you
    can draw your own conclusions about what has changed in the last 20 years.

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