Some Utah cops think lawmakers should impose a psychological exam before a person can buy a gun. People who buy guns currently only need to pass a background check, but if it was up to Utah police officers they would need to pass a lot more. Officers say that this extra step could potentially help with making Utah a safer place.
There has been different opinions from gun owners about the topic. Konrad Chen, says that the exam could be beneficial.
“I think its a good idea to make sure that they are sane and that they are capable mentally to handle fire arms, and if there are any signs of issues that they can go ahead and take care of that before issuing a firearm,” says Chen.
Chen also says the exam could serve as another filter to make sure that people who buy guns know how to safely use them.
Chen said, “It would allow the general public to get educated with the fact that those who have guns are going to be mentally stable to have them.”
There are also gun owners who don’t like the idea of creating another legal hoop to jump through that could potentially be used by the government to restrict gun sales.
Range Masters Shooting Range owner Steve Darling says, “It’s also pretty invasive and I think it goes against our constitutional rights. That can be debated extensively; I just think its a little overboard. ”
Opponents of the possible regulation claim that a background check is enough, because it can already show any red flags about someone.
“Typically, if an individual has extreme circumstances in their background, that stuff is going to preclude them when they go for a background check anyway, because as it stands now, they’ve already been required to pass a background check with the state to obtain a firearm,” says Darling.
Some gun owners claim a psychological test could reduce violent crime,where others claim it will only make it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to buy guns.