Hearing about the many dangers in the country likely encourages you to think about the entities in place that are designed to promote safety. One of those entities is the ATF, otherwise known as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. Despite the entity's mission, you may wonder if it really keeps you safe. While only you can determine how you feel about the ATF, taking some considerations into account can help you to formulate your opinion.
The Reality of Safety
You absolutely must determine what you mean by safety in order to assess how safe the ATF keeps you. In other words, it is virtually impossible at the current time to live in a world that is 100 percent safe from the dangers of alcohol, tobacco, firearms, and explosives. Instead, the goal is to live in a place that is as safe as possible, according to CBS News. If you want the ATF to keep you entirely safe from these substances and items, the answer is then that the bureau fails. However, if you want the ATF to keep you as safe as possible, the bureau may then succeed.
One way to determine if the ATF really keeps you safe or not is to take a look at the bureau's track record. FastBound A&D is a company that provides ATF Compliance Software for FFLs. According to their article, the ATF has a 95% success rate in the District Court and a 100% success rate in the Court of Appeals. The high level of success at the court level suggests that the entity is a powerful one. Whether or not these statistics indicate that the ATF keeps you safe is another question, but the figures are favorable.
You also must take into account the way that this bureau has to prioritize concerns. For example, if you live in a community that is overrun with violent crimes, the focus may then be on explosives and firearms as opposed to alcohol and tobacco. One way to assess if the ATF is keeping your community safe is to look at crime rates in the past years. When crime is on the decline, you might have the ATF to partially thank. When crime is on the upswing, you may wonder how much you can really believe that the ATF keeps you safe.
Known and Unknown Success
Also important to remember is that you might not always know when the ATF has been successful. Government entities do not always release full details because they have to be concerned with compromising current investigations, according to this article by The Trace. On the other hand, you likely want to know about successful efforts in the community. It's possible that the ATF is keeping you safe but that you don't know about it.
An objective answer does not exist as to whether the ATF really keeps you safe. You have to answer this question for yourself based on some individual factors, but you can use these criteria to help.