A Breakdown of the Biden Administration’s First Step Towards Gun Control

Allison Gould, Print Editor-in-Chief

On Apr. 7, 2021, the Biden Administration announced six new gun control executive orders in response to the recent uptick in mass shootings and overall gun violence. In 2021, at least 194 mass shootings occurred in the United States, accompanied by uproar for change. Below is a breakdown of the six executive orders Biden passed.

  • Ceasing any sale or purchase of “ghost guns”: In order to evade previously established gun control regulations, many individuals purchase kits containing all of the individual parts or multiple kits in order to make a complete firearm. In order to reduce the use of ghost guns, this executive order requires serial numbers to be stamped on each part, allowing officials to track the weapon used in a crime to the offender.
  • An increase in community violence interventions: Based on factual evidence, community interventions regarding gun violence in urban areas will increase as a way to deter gun violence without incarceration. The funding for this executive order comes from a proposal from the American Job Plan to invest $5 billion over the course of eight years. In order to start these programs, five different federal agencies have allocated funds to support the community violence interventions as quickly as possible.
  • Updated guidelines on stabilizing braces: As a way to increase the accuracy of shots of pistols and alter them to make them similar to rifles, many individuals use stabilizer braces. This executive order raises requirements for attaining one and a more in-depth application process.
  • New “red flag” laws: This specific executive order encourages the Justice Department to contrive a model applicable to all states to make it easier for states without these laws to adopt them. “Red flag” laws allow law enforcement or families to attain a court order that would prevent an individual from purchasing a firearm when in distress or if they pose a threat to themselves or others.
  • Annual reports of firearm trafficking: The Justice Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (AFT) have to collect and publish updated data about firearm trafficking in order to provide legislators with accurate information to target the issue. The last report on firearm trafficking took place in 2000; thus, the information that legislators currently use is out of date. 
  • President Joe Biden’s appointment of David Chipman as the Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives: Chipman has a background with the AFT and gun control and safety, thus prompting Biden to trust him with this position.

Although the Biden administration is taking action to combat the complex issue of gun violence, much more needs to be done at both the federal and state levels in order to ensure that fewer people lose their lives to guns.