Credit Card Companies Capitulate To Anti-Gun Lobby

Credit Card Companies Capitulate To Anti-Gun Lobby

Credit Card Companies Capitulate To Anti-Gun Lobby

Credit card companies will now have a specific merchant code for any purchase made at a gun store.

If you buy a gun with plastic, your credit card company is going to know about it.

As obvious as that sounds, it wasn’t until this weekend that the big three credit card companies — Visa, Mastercard and American Express — agreed to adopt a new merchant code that specifically carves out gun sales from the “general merchandise” category.

Other types of purchases, everything from plumbing equipment to florist supplies, already have their own codes. But this one’s been years in the making.

Gun control advocates, blue state public pension fund leaders and Democratic policymakers say the subtle, arcane adjustment in how transactions are coded could stop illegal gun trafficking and help law enforcement identify dangerous purchases by would-be mass shooters before they ever pull the trigger.

“The creation of [a] new merchant category code for firearms is a major step forward that will help give law enforcement the tools they need to stop a tragedy before it happens,” New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said in a statement released by Amalgamated Bank on Friday. “I’m grateful to the business leaders who stepped up and joined the fight to protect public safety — here in New York and across the nation.”

Of course, the anti-gun lobby is dancing a jig over this. Using the ‘everything else you purchase has a merchant code, so this is no big deal’ gambit is quite telling. If you look through the entire list of current merchant codes, one will see that STORES are listed. In fact, even sporting goods stores such as Cabela’s or Scheels already have their own category. But what the credit card companies are doing now is a SEPARATE code for actual gun and ammunition purchases. 

Supposedly this will be THE MAGIC BULLET that will stop that next mass shooter from killing people. Knowing your purchases are tracked, all future shootings of any kind will magically disappear. 

“By creating a new MCC for gun and ammunition retailers, credit card companies and financial institutions can better monitor suspicious activity, like straw purchases, and, in turn, help save lives,” said Representative Dean. “Our nation’s gun crisis requires all of us to act, and I urge companies like MasterCard, American Express, and Visa to support Amalgamated Bank’s request for this code.”

The inference there is that any significant purchase of a rifle, pistol, and or ammunition means A. Someone is planning a mass shooting, or B. That purchase was made on behalf of someone else who IS planning a mass shooting. Never mind the fact that all gun purchases are required by law to have a background check conducted, buying lots of guns and ammunition will supposedly mean a mass shooting is being planned. 

Exactly. How many shootings in Chicago are with legally purchased weapons? Very few if any. 

What does this mean for all the civilians who are buying more guns and ammunition than ever because their cities and neighborhoods are no longer safe due to Democrat ‘appease the criminal’ policies? This survey, finalized last year, is highly illuminating. 

“Given that 31.1% of firearms owners have used a firearm in self-defense, this implies that approximately 25.3 million adult Americans have defended themselves with a firearm,” English wrote in a preprint report on the study published on the Social Science Research Network (SSRN). “Answers to the frequency question suggest that these gun owners have been involved in a total of approximately 50 million defensive incidents. Assuming that defensive uses of firearms are distributed roughly equally across years, this suggests at least 1.67 million defensive uses of firearms per year in which firearms owners have defended themselves or their property through the discharge, display, or mention of a firearm (excluding military service, police work, or work as a security guard).”

As the survey also points out, that doesn’t mean someone actually fired their weapon in every single instance. For many, just the mention of their weapon or the showing of it defused the situation. 

Since mid-2020 people all over the country became first time buyers of guns and ammunition. That trend has continued. Why? Because of months of riots. Because of cities such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, Denver, Chicago, Philadelphia, New York City and other Democrat-run cities are letting criminals walk, no matter the crime that was committed.

People don’t feel safe. They are using their Second Amendment right to protect themselves. Firearms training and concealed carry classes are full within minutes of schedules being posted. Stores have had a very difficult time keeping both weapons and ammunition on the shelves these last two years due to the rampant crime and the woke policies of activist district attorneys. 

A new merchant code that tracks gun and ammo purchases won’t stop the next mass shooting. But it will supposedly facilitate the collection of data to identify future domestic terrorism extremist threats. 

Professor Jacobsen sums it up perfectly. 

There is a thin line in society, between food and anarchy, freedom and repression, liberty and tyranny, safety and street violence. It’s thinner than we want to admit, and it’s being pushed to its limits on purpose by ideologies that want to deconstruct our society. Tearing down society is a dangerous game.

This move by the credit card companies is yet another tear in the fabric of our Constitutional Republic. 

Welcome Instapundit Readers!

Feature Photo Credit: Original artwork by Victory Girls Darleen Click 

Written by

  • Lloyd says:

    The government continues to look for “snitches”….First Red Flags, and now this. America has a new form of :secret police!”

    • Darleen Click says:

      The “American Stasi” is reality.

    • GWB says:

      Here’s the thing: they aren’t getting everything you bought in the transaction.
      If I buy a candy bar and a soda at the local range – I bring my own ammo and don’t have to pay for range time, being a member – that would also get flagged as a “gun store” purchase by this vendor code. They won’t know if I bought an AR, a holster, some ammo, a hot dog with sauerkraut, or a pair of “tactical” shorts – they will just know I bought something from “those people”.

      This isn’t intended (IMO) so much for snitching as it is for putting these folks out of business at some point, by denying those transactions.

  • GWB says:

    OK, note that it is the clearinghouse governing body that is adopting the code. It is not the CCs, directly. The clearinghouse companies are the ones that identify the various vendors who use their services, and will assign this code to their customers. Yes, the CC companies caved into this, and could stop it if they wanted it. But this was done as a cutout by a non-governmental body that coordinates all the clearinghouses so they all report the same info.

    The concept is really non-inflammatory if you look at it from 25 years ago. The codes help them determine what people are buying in aggregate, and help you manage your money by putting that information (this was for groceries, this was for paying utilities, this was for sporting goods, this was for hardware…) in your CC or debit transaction list.

    Now, the other thing it can be used for is setting different rates for using the service. You can charge “grocers” less because people have to eat (and gov’t cards for WIC and welfare!), and charge more for, say, electronics stores. Alternatively, you can charge more for “utilities” because you can get away with soaking people for that.

    a major step forward that will help give law enforcement the tools they need to stop a tragedy before it happens
    That’s utter bullshit. The only way they could do that is to set up an extra-legal monitoring system (spying on Americans) with some sort of threshold amount to trigger an (also extra-legal) call to the authorities.
    Of course, the tragedy they want to prevent is armed, responsible citizens.

    a SEPARATE code for actual gun and ammunition purchases
    Again, understand, this is NOT a code for specific purchased items. This is a vendor code.
    They want to know when you buy stuff from the shop that sells triggers and AR-15 lower parts, or the guy that sells firing pins. Or, yes, ammo. They already have numerous ways to track your purchase of a firearm. They aren’t really looking at tracking you, so much as (IMO) setting you up to shutdown the vendors by cutting them off from the CC system.

    all future shootings of any kind
    And the only citation they can bring to bear is the dude that shot up the Pulse nightclub, because he bought tens of thousands of dollars worth of guns and ammo soon before the event. NO other event actually looks like that.

    financial institutions can better monitor suspicious activity, like straw purchases
    Absolute lie. They can’t check straw purchases at all with this. At least not any more than they already can by noticing a lot of NICS checks for one person. (They are also the people I would most expect to use cash in their transactions, BTW.)

    Never mind the fact that all gun purchases are required by law to have a background check conducted
    This is about shutting down all the non-complete-firearms businesses, not about buying full-on firearms, IMO. This is because I think they know their revised 80% rule will die in court. It is also to add to the ability to control us through some sort of social credit.

    But it will supposedly facilitate the collection of data
    And, in a different time, when most of us (in western civilization) were Christians or pretended to be, that collection of data was useful and not really harmful. But, as the Founders were leery of monarchs because some are good and some are bad, so – as Progressivism leaked into institutions across our land – we went from collecting the data for benign purposes (because it was useful to customers) to nefarious purposes (enacting a global progressive utopia).

    (BTW, this was started at least as far back as financial management software in the 80s/90s. You could assign certain categories to your transactions, and the software would track it for you and make pretty graphs showing how you spent your money. Of course, you could already write that into your bank book, but software allowed you to make pretty graphs – and lots of people really like pretty graphs. The credit card thing just started centralizing that – like everything else in our connected age – so you had a handy, already built, set of categories to use. Note also that all of the financial management software now is … online.)

  • NTSOG says:

    Does this provision mean that staff of non-government organisations will potentially have access to information about owners of firearms, specifically names, addresses, types of firearms, etc.? Recently [March 2022] in the state of Western Australia a ‘smart’ politician [Police Minister] authorised the publication of a map showing where gun owners lived in the state. Identifying details were supposedly removed, but computer experts quickly identified street addresses of gun owners. As an owner of firearms in Australia I am required to ensure the security of my firearms at all times and, when travelling with them, ensure that they are secure and out of sight in my vehicle. Otherwise I can be prosecuted. I would be horrified if some non-government agency and its staff had access directly or indirectly to information about me and my legally purchased firearms. If someone can leak a document from the US Supreme Court, then nothing is now sacred and safe from progressive zealots and skilled hackers.

    The NRA published an article about the Australian debacle:

    • GWB says:

      They already do have access, to some extent, to firearms information: the background check forms we fill out have the serial number and description of the firearm on them.

      This code won’t tag specific items in any one transaction, they will merely tag it as a “gun store” transaction. And it will track all the other items currently not tracked in the US: triggers, parts, barrels, upper receivers, ammo, holsters, etc. And it will tag transactions even if there are no firearm parts in it – if you buy a cookie and a coke at the “gun store” it will get tagged as “gun store” purchase.

      I don’t think this is to track so much as it is to allow them later (as they did with marijuana shops) deny transactions with that code because “those aren’t good people.”

  • legioinvictus says:

    This is the first step to a China model (which the left loves) of a centralized digital currency and social credit system regime in the US. It’s coming and the radical left and Democrats (but then I repeat myself) with the collusion of the so-called conservative bitches of China (can you say Mitch McConnell) are totally ok with.

    Wake up folks. They are serious.

  • Goatroper says:

    Since anti-gun folks haven’t been able to legally force gun registration, they are resorting to other, less obvious means. This is registration, but it is registration from another angle. As the article points out, vendor codes will not indicate exactly what you purchase, and that isn’t really the point. This will lead instead to a CCP-style social credit score; it will register behavior. Doesn’t matter what you buy — if you’re buying from one of those places, your choice of “right” or “wrong” vendors will be noted. That behavior record is of course expected to be useful at some point in the future.

  • markedup2 says:

    Cash will not be banned until politicians stop taking bribes, so never.

    I switched to plastic so I could be honest with the beggars: “Sorry, I don’t carry cash.” I’m switching back and now I just lie.

  • John says:

    Gun stores should pass on the credit card fee to those who pay with cash – encouraging the cash transaction and denying fees to the credit card companies…

  • […] The big credit card companies are coming for your guns. Looks like guns and ammo will be cash only purchases for a lot of folks from now on. This bit of boot-in-the-face brought to you by Senators Elizabeth Warren and Diane Feinstein. […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Become a Victory Girl!

Are you interested in writing for Victory Girls? If you’d like to blog about politics and current events from a conservative POV, send us a writing sample here.
Ava Gardner