Interesting development. It’s another attempt at an end run around the 2nd Amendment:
“I’m pleased that the ISO voted to advance a key step to prevent the next tragedy,” Lander said in a news release. “American Express, Mastercard, Visa and other credit card companies now have a responsibility to implement the new merchant category code, so that financial institutions can do their part to flag suspicious activity and save lives.”
Credit card purchases of firearms in the US can now be tracked and purchases deemed suspicious can even be shared with law enforcement, according to a new measure approved by an organization that sets parameters for business transactions.
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) voted in favor of creating a merchant code for firearms stores, according to Reuters.
Visa’s decision will allow banks to make decisions with enhanced information on whether they will allow purchases at gun shops on their cards.
Visa’s adoption is significant as the largest payment network, and with Mastercard and AmeEx, will likely put pressure on the banks as the card issuers to adopt the standard as well. Visa acts as a middleman between merchants and banks, and it will be up to banks to decide whether they will allow sales at gun stores to happen on their issued cards.
Gun rights advocates argue that tracking sales at gun stores would unfairly target legal gun purchases, since merchant codes just track the type of merchant where the credit or debit card is used, not the actual items purchased. A sale of a gun safe, worth thousands of dollars and an item considered part of responsible gun ownership, could be seen as a just a large purchase at a gun shop.
“The (industry’s) decision to create a firearm specific code is nothing more than a capitulation to anti-gun politicians and activists bent on eroding the rights of law-abiding Americans one transaction at a time,” said Lars Dalseide, a spokesman for the National Rifle Association.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, on Wednesday morning, also tweeted in support of an MCC.
“Together we can help stop gun trafficking & keep New Yorkers safe,” she posted.
Opponents of the measure included the National Rifle Association and the National Shooting Sports Foundation.
In a statement to The Center Square, Mark Oliva, the organization’s managing director for public affairs, slammed the move, saying the creation of the code was “flawed on its premise. Those who believe it will help law enforcement do not provide details on what should be considered suspicious purchases.”
“This decision chills the free exercise of Constitutionally-protected rights and does nothing to assist law enforcement with crime prevention or holding criminals accountable,” he said. “The Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics consistently shows in their own reporting that 90% of felons convicted of their crimes involving a firearm admit they illegally obtain those guns through theft or trading on the black market. Attaching codes specific to firearm and ammunition purchases casts a dark pall by gun control advocates who are only interested in disarming lawful gun owners.”
I have three takeaways:
- Continue using cash whenever I can (online is still going to be a card).
- Encourage others to use cash.
- Publicize and advocate boycotts for banks that refuse to let their cards be used for the exercise of 2nd Amendment rights.
Make this work both ways. They want to use it to cast a chilling effect on the exercise of constitutionally protected right. We can use it to out the enemies of the constitution and freedom. And by using cash you enable others to avoid paying our oppressors more tax money.
Update: This is a good article on the topic which includes more from the civil rights viewpoint.