After publishing a lengthy investigation showing that guns used in crimes can be traced to a relatively small number of gun dealers, the Washington Post today editorialized that Congress should repeal the law that keeps that very data from the public. Even though the federal government collects such data, Congress barred public disclosure of those data in a little noticed amendment to a 2003 spending bill.
The Post concludes by noting the implications of such secrecy:
Those with a high number of “crime gun” sales should be inspected frequently, and penalties for dealers who allow illegal transactions should be swift and stiff. That isn’t likely to happen, though, as long as the public is kept in the dark about the extent of the problem and who the wayward dealers are.
Sounds about right.