Social media networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are being used for gun sales. These online forums are meant to build communities, bridge distances, connect friends and family. What started as an enterprise to connect students on college campuses eventually turned out not to be just for individuals. Today, you have global corporations, world leaders, and anyone with access to the internet using social media networks.
According to a Daily News article, “social media networks are an increasingly popular phenomenon being used as a marketplace for prospective gun vendors. Gun owners post a picture of their firearm, add a caption with a description of the gun, set a price, and wait for the highest bidder on their products.”
Unlike eBay, which has policies restricting the posting of firearms on their website, however, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have no such policy. Users of these websites are free to promote gun sales. The sales are made without any background checks of the potential buyer of a gun. Basically, anyone can login to Facebook and purchase a gun of your choice even with a criminal record.
Background checks are necessary to prevent guns from ending up in the wrong hands. The shooting at the naval base recently in our nation’s Capital is a good example of what could happen with a gun in the wrong hands. One violent impulse may possibly turn into a national tragedy.
Congress refuses to pass a federal law making it mandatory to have background checks to have a firearm. The market for background-check-free guns is still on the rise. Social media makes it convenient for people. As a result, an online petition was created by an unknown individual pressuring Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to change their user policies to prevent gun sales without background checks.
Their policies only require users to comply with federal and state laws. Most states don’t have any laws restricting online gun sales without background checks. Some individuals believe the enabling of gun sales without a background check can and will save lives. It can possibly prevent more tragedies from happening.