(UnitedVoice.com) – One of the biggest concerns for gun owners is the possibility the government will decide to seize their weapons. That’s the reason many of them are vehemently against the ATF creating a federal database of gun owners. Second Amendment activists have successfully fought off any attempts by Liberals to create a national gun registry. However, a new problem has arisen over the last year.
A private company is going to start tracking gun owners’ purchases.
On February 18, Reuters published an exclusive article reporting Discover Financial Services revealed that its network will be allowed to track gun store purchases beginning in April. The decision followed the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) launch of a Merchant Category Code (MCC) dedicated to firearms stores.
A spokesperson for the credit card company told the news organization that it was focused on “protect[ing] and support[ing] lawful purchases … while protecting the privacy of cardholders.”
Critics aren’t buying it. They argue that by creating an MCC dedicated to gun store purchases, the credit card company is violating the rights of its customers. The Firearm Industry Trade Association (NSSF) wrote a blog post about the new rule and accused Discover of failing to live up to any of its past slogans because the company is “selling out its customers” who just want to make legal purchases at firearms retailers.
In 2022, reports indicated VISA was also going to start tracking when its customers purchased items at gun retailers. The blowback was immediate. Republican lawmakers raised concerns about a private company running a surveillance operation on its customers.
POLITICO reported Rep. Roger Williams (R-TX) warned that anti-Second Amendment activists were going to encourage financial “institutions to flag every single transaction with a gun [code] to law enforcement.” Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis (R) threatened to “deplatform” financial institutions doing business in the Sunshine State because of the “harm or irreparable harm they’re doing.”
Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) called the push for gun MCCs a threat to the Second Amendment.
The backlash to the VISA reports was so loud, the company issued a statement saying it was not going to use MCCs to track gun purchases as a means to combat firearm violence. “That’s not what [MCCs] are designed for, nor should they be,” the company stated. The codes do not allow VISA or anyone to see what exactly a customer is purchasing and do not believe “companies should serve as moral arbiters.”
Discover is the first of the major credit card companies to give a date for when the MCC policy will go into effect.
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