A New York City gun sting was probably among the last things in the world vendors at an Arizona gun show thought they had to worry about, but that’s exactly what they were in involved in on January 23rd. The sting, considered part of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s anti-gun program, revealed that undercover operatives (and presumably some less trustworthy individuals) could still purchase a semi-automatic weapon even after they indicated that they could not pass a background check.

As an actual initiative to stop the flow of guns into New York City, investigating an Arizona gun show is rather ineffective. But that isn’t what Bloomberg was going for.

The second paragraph of the press release laid it out. “This country must take two simple steps to stop more of the 34 murders that occur with guns every day: make every gun sale subject to a background check, and make sure the background check system has all the required records in it.  Congress should act now…” Tucson was mentioned.

If the Bloomberg Administration wanted a headline that would spread their message on gun control across the country, visiting where they did when they did was a perfect move. Bloomberg is using the story in Arizona to suggest that rather than changing the freedoms of gun ownership, Congress should focus on enforcing the current legislation.

The sting also serves as a powerful reminder that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link- If a gun can be easily bought in Arizona, it can be easily brought to New York. Sending law enforcement across the country to buy guns illegally at supposedly legitimate venues makes a powerful argument for stricter standards being set at the federal level.

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