The closing of this loophole is progress - as is the fact that Pennsylvania State Police have begun turning over mental-health records of people banned from buying guns to a federal database. In other times, we would be feeling more relieved by these actions. But in a month in which gun violence is still leading the news around the country, it's hard to feel much safer.
Monday, a gunman shot two dead before being killed at a Wilmington, Del., courthouse.
Before that, masked gunmen assassinated a prosecutor in Texas. A young woman in Chicago, fresh from performing at President Obama's inaugural ceremony, took a drive-by bullet and died.
Also in Texas - a former Marine at a Texas shooting range shot and killed two men, including Chris Kyle, a Navy SEAL, decorated war hero and best-selling author of American Sniper.
The murder of the decorated SEAL poses a unique challenge to the National Rifle Association, which lately has insisted that the best way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun. We don't know how much better of a guy you can get than Kyle - decorated hero, counselor to troubled vets and perhaps the most proficient man with a firearm in history.
It's been a tough stretch for NRA spin doctors. No sooner does the NRA announce that armed police officers are the best way to safeguard a building than an unarmed, heavily guarded man walks into a Gloucester Township, N.J., police station, disarms a police officer and uses the gun to shoot other officers.
Just days after the Texas Legislature proposes to solve the campus-security problem by issuing carry permits to students, two armed students at the state's Lone Star College start shooting at each other, wounding two others in the cross fire.
Nothing, however, exposes the simple-mindedness of the NRA's white-hat/black-hat Old West view of gun-barrel justice like the case of Christopher Dorner.
He's a war veteran and former LAPD officer who took a workplace grudge and turned it into a bloody rampage that targeted police and their families. In the end, four people were killed. In the wake of his attacks, confused L.A. cops - the good guys -- wounded civilians by shooting blindly into trucks matching the description of Dorner's vehicle.
(On Tuesday, Dorner was believed to be barricaded inside a mountain cabin - then a single shot was heard and the cabin went up in flames.)
Meanwhile, Congress remains divided on acting on gun-control legislation. How many more bodies does it need?