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Rules of giving guns as Christmas gifts

More gun background checks were conducted on Black Friday than on any other day in U.S. history, FBI statistics show. It is believed some of those gun purchases will likely be used as Christmas gifts.

“There are a series of questions that they have to fill out truthfully,” Guns & Gear General Manager Michael Loy said. “Then they have to sign at the bottom certifying that everything they said is correct.”

Loy said there is a very good reason for the increase in gun gifts and sales, and it is not political.

“The primary reason we are seeing an increase in gun sales, nationwide, is because there are people participating in the shooting sport than ever before,” Loy said. “We definitely saw an increase in people giving firearms as gifts this year.”

Those people who do make the gun purchase for someone else will be asked a series of questions. Loy said every question asked has to be signed off as true on federal documents by the purchaser.

Buying a gun as a gift comes with a host of moral, ethical and legal ramifications. For example, it is a crime to commit what’s called a “straw purchase” for someone who cannot legally own a firearm.

Elden Arnell, who is in charge of ATF compliance at Guns & Gear, said most gifts are legal as long as there is no money exchanged.

“As long as there is no monetary give or take, there is no problem whatsoever giving a firearm as a gift,” said Arnell.

It is a federal felony to give a gun to someone you know legally can’t have one, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Guns & Gears suggests rather than purchasing an actual gun as a gift, that you get an idea of the cost of gun your loved one wants and buy a gift card instead.

A new Gallup Poll shows the biggest factors in gun ownership are fear, gender and whether you’ve been a victim of crime in the past year.

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