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Fears pack Chantilly’s Gun Show, says gun dealers | News

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Fears pack Chantilly’s Gun Show, says gun dealers

CHANTILLY, Va. (WUSA9) -- Recent news of President Obama’s executive action plans on gun control had lines stretching down the sidewalk at both entrances at the Nation’s Gun Show in Chantilly, Va. on Saturday.  

A few gun dealers and the gun show’s director told WUSA9 many gun owners are now afraid of proposed executive action, in addition to threats from ISIS and frustration over changes to Virginia’s conceal and carry permits.

One gun dealer said he’s not happy with the president, but at least for now, he is thanking him.

“Obama is the best gun salesman in the world,” said Robert Starer. “People are scared to death that they’re not going to be able to protect themselves.”

Starer is an exhibitor at the Nation’s Gun Show whose company specializes in firearms training. He told WUSA9  they had 175 people sign up for Virginia concealed firearm permit classes on Friday alone and with Saturday’s numbers, by the show’s end he’s expecting to have double the people signed up for this weekend as they had the last gun show in November.

Of the proposed executive actions on guns, one of them is said to require non-licensed sellers to become licensed and perform background checks. It’s been dubbed the “Gun Show Loophole” because at Gun Shows like the Chantilly one, private sellers are not legally required perform background checks when making a sale.

“I have quite an extensive collection,” said hobbyist and hunter, Larry Dever, who had a table set-up at the show with several double-barrel shotguns and ammunition for sale.

Dever told WUSA 9, “I’m just a private citizen. And I can sell a hammer, a person can be killed just as quick with a hammer, and we don’t need a license to sell a hammer as they do a firearm.”

If not a hammer, some brought up vehicles arguing a person selling their personal vehicle is not required to become a licensed dealer.

“The obvious issue you have is, ‘how do you balance individual property rights against society’s need to be protected?” said Starer.

Starer is one of many who laughed saying such an executive order would not stop the criminals who want one, from obtaining a gun.

The Owner and Director of the Nation’s Gun Show equated this to an attack on all law-abiding gun owners.

“They want to register them all and they want them to have to go to through a federal firearms licenses so they can get their little list and they can show up pretty soon and knock on your door, happen in about a decade, they’ll knock on their door and confiscate them,” said Annette Elliot.

Elliot and many others accused President Obama of ignoring mental health.

“The issue itself is the human being, the mental state, no structure in the family homes,” said Dick George, a man at the Saturday show who identified himself as a Vietnam Veteran.

“I brought a .22 to shoot squirrel with and it took me about three hours to buy it,” said George, "It’s just irritating, it really is. I mean, I put 22 years in the service to be treated like crap half the time, half our benefits are disappearing, it’s just – it’s upsetting, it really is.”

“Child abusers, wife-beaters … perhaps we need more conscientious observation of how that is because it is the crazy people who do what they do,” said Mark McConnell, who told WUSA9 his father was an ATF Assistant Director in the 70s. McConnell told WUSA9, he understands some legislation and is a proponent of gun safety.

“Why not just do a vote? Instead of executive order, why not put it up for a national vote so all of us go to the polls and give us our opinions.”

Our media partners at The Washington Post reports the Obama administration has been weighing other proposals, including requiring federally licensed gun dealers to report any lost and stolen guns to the National Crime Information Center; providing guidance on restricting dangers individuals from carrying guns within a specified distance of a school; clarifying that convicted abusers are prohibited from having guns regardless of the marital status and instructing federal law enforcement to identify and arrest criminals who attempted to buy legal guns.

President Obama is expected to meet with the U.S. Attorney General, Loretta E. Lynch, on Monday to finalize about half a dozen or more gun control measures. 

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