Bill Could Mandate Background Checks For Gunpowder


A bill sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) would mandate background checks on anyone attempting to buy traditional gun powder, commonly known as black powder.

The move comes as Democratic Senators react to the Boston Marathon bombing. Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), on whose behalf Reid introduced the bill, said requiring the checks “is a small price to pay to ensure the safety of our communities.”

While gunpowder is no longer used in the majority of modern consumer ammunition, it’s still used for explosives, fireworks and muzzle-loading weapons. Other types of munitions powder, including modern smokeless powder, would also require background checks for amounts exceeding 50 pounds.


Personal Liberty

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

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  • vicki

    What about background checks on propane bottles? Were they not used in the times square bombing attempt? And as we well know background checks should be required for all gasoline purchases since the most devastating mass murder was done with a bottle of gasoline ( It will only be a minor inconvenience. Right?

  • Old Wolf

    Would also have to mandate background checks for fireworks, gasoline, and many other explosive compounds that can easily be made or manufactured. Black powder is only one of the easier manufactured materials, far more destructive compounds can be easily made out of household materials, or farm goods. Seems they’re straining at the gnat and swallowing the camel, as background checks are no indicator of future behavior. Nor do background checks affect the most common cases of criminal behavior who have no criminal background whatsoever. This is just another end run against the second amendment. Dry up the ammunition supply, then dry up the reloading gear, primers, powder, and lead.