Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden's campaign has chosen to label gun violence in the US not as a safety or some similar concern, but as “a public health epidemic.”
It's these days no doubt a fashionable way of branding issues and garnering a great deal of attention – but this particular “epidemic” apparently won't be solved by wearing masks or maintaining physical distance.
Instead, Biden's plan to tackle the problem, laid out in a document posted on his campaign website, seems to be to continue to take on the National Rifle Association (NRA) as he has done in the past, but also go for issuing executive actions in order to limit the right to own guns.
Gun control is a popular and long-standing talking point among US Democrats, and one of the more controversial ones in US politics and society, so it's no wonder it's cropped up ahead of these elections as well.
However, in this day and age there is another front where this battle is to be fought, that was not nearly as prominent back in the day, and that is the internet. And now Biden's policy writers are proposing how to curb the weapons manufacturing and trading industry online as well.
The lengthy “Plan to End Gun Violence” campaign write-up refers in passing (once) to the Second Amendment of the US Constitution – that protects the individual right to keep and bear arms. While Biden makes lip service to that by saying it would be “respected” – he immediately dismisses it as anyway. In the same breath, he promises to push on with previous attempts to hold gunmakers “accountable” by changing the laws that now protect them.
As for the role of the internet, Biden would push the National Instant Criminal Background Check System to close “gun show and online sales loophole” and stop so-called 3D printed ghost guns by requiring purchasers of gun kits or 3D printing code to pass a federal background check.
Biden's plan is also to “end the online sale of firearms and ammunitions” and “enact legislation to prohibit all online sales of firearms, ammunition, kits, and gun parts.”