It Took Seven Minutes For This Reporter To Buy An Assault Rifle Just Like The One Used In The Orlando Shooting

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This is incredible!!

Helen Ubinas is a reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer, and she was so motivated by the horrific nightclub shooting in Orlando over the weekend, that she decided to test the system and make a statement in her own way.

That is, she wanted to prove a point about gun control laws by walking into a gun shop and buying a weapon — the exact same weapon that was used in what is now the deadliest mass shooting in American history.

Related: Orlando Survivor Pens Powerful Letter To Shooter: ‘We Are Stronger Than Your Hate’

Only, Ubinas didn’t count on one thing during her trip: it was so simple to purchase the gun that it even left her absolutely shocked at just how quickly she was able to do it.

Seven minutes.

That’s right. It took her SEVEN MINUTES to buy an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle.

She recounted her story today in a horrifyingly jarring piece in Philadelphia’s Inquirer, in which she wrote:

“Seven minutes. From the moment I handed the salesperson my driver’s license to the moment I passed my background check. It likely will take more time than that during the forthcoming round of vigils to respectfully read the names of the more than 100 people who were killed or injured. It’s obscene.”

While Ubinas laments the fact that it’s just too easy to buy a weapon that is capable of mass destruction like this, she also notes how this almost certainly won’t be the end of gun violence in this country, writing:

“There will undoubtedly be a next one. This has been said, but bears repeating and repeating and repeating some more. If nothing changed after children – babies – were slaughtered inside their school, do any of us really believe anything will change following the deaths of people so many fear and loathe simply for trying to live their truths? The gunman was apparently enraged over seeing a same-sex couple kiss. Think about that. Love enraged him. Love made him kill.”

Ugh. So sad, but so true — and we have to confront it.

It’s even more illuminating just how low-key the process is to purchasing a firearm of this magnitude as Ubinas notes.

Related: Here Are The 49 Orlando Nightclub Shooting Victims

She points out her own motives in her piece, but finds it doesn’t matter when she actually walks up to the gun shop in Philly:

“I need to come up with some plausible story, I think. What if I’m asked why, a day after this massacre, I want to buy the very type of gun used to slaughter people at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando. I consider my options: I’m a woman who wants a rifle for safety reasons? I’m a gun enthusiast with a soft spot for military-style rifles? I’m a card-carrying member of the NRA who is afraid the government will be coming for my guns? Turns out I don’t need a story. The AR-15 is on display in the window of the gun shop. It is being promoted as the gun of the week. What will it take to buy one, I ask the sales guy. Did I have identification? Yes. Was I a U.S. citizen? Yes.”

And that’s it. Gun bought.


Related: Lin-Manuel Miranda Delivers A Sonnet About Orlando Shooting

Ubinas felt so dirty about the situation — and didn’t want the gun any more to begin with than just to prove the point of how easy it is to acquire — that she went and handed it in at a local police station immediately.

But the point stands: it’s way, way too easy to get a weapon for too many people who are inclined towards evil.

The entire piece is touching, heart-wrenching, and worth a read. Click HERE to read it.

[Image via KXII.]

Jun 14, 2016 4:09pm PDT

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