Over the last several weeks, gun control groups and Congressional Democrats have been razor focused on pushing credit card companies into regulating firearm purchases through new merchant codes.
They’ve proposed new merchant codes for “suspicious” purchases made at sporting goods stores. The goal, according to those pushing the legislation, is to allow law enforcement agencies “to track suspicious firearm and ammunition purchases.”
And now it looks as though we’re one step closer to the anti-gunners’ wishes coming true.
The New York-based Amalgamated Bank brought the merchant code proposal before a subcommittee of the International Organization for Standardization after NYC Mayor Eric Adams and Sen. Elizabeth Warren pushed for the financial move, Reuters reported.
“We all have to do our part to stop gun violence,” Priscilla Sims Brown, the president and chief executive of Amalgamated Bank, told the New York Times. “The new code will allow us to fully comply with our duty to report suspicious activity and illegal gun sales to authorities without blocking or impeding legal gun sales.”
According to Amalgamated Bank, they are “America’s socially responsible bank” that helps with “building a more just and sustainable world.”
Of course, Everytown for Gun Safety, Moms Demand Action, and Shannon Watts were quick to applaud the move.
What This Means for Gun Owners
Now that the ISO approved the new merchant code for gun sales, other credit card companies are moving toward adopting the code.
“We now turn our focus to how it will be implemented by merchants and their banks as we continue to support lawful purchases on our network while protecting the privacy and decisions of individual cardholders,” Mastercard Inc. told Reuters.
American Express is working with various third parties to implement the code change.
“We are focused on ensuring that we have the right controls in place to meet our regulatory and fiduciary responsibilities, as well as prevent illegal activity on our network,” American Express told Reuters.
Visa indicated to the NYT that they’re not a part of the ISO. It’s unclear whether or not they will implement the code change as well.
As I’ve said before, there are serious issues with this move. If you purchase camping or fishing equipment at a place like Cabela’s or Sportsman’s Warehouse, your purchase will be listed under the new gun merchant code. If you’re spending large sums of money, you will likely be flagged and sent to local law enforcement officials for “suspicious activity.” And the only reason? Those companies sell firearms and ammo. The merchant codes make the assumption you’re purchasing large volumes of guns and ammo.