After the adoption of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1878, most States turned to “facially neutral” business or transaction taxes on handgun purchases. However, the intention of these laws was not neutral.
An article in Virginia’s official university law review called for a “prohibitive tax…on the privilege” of selling
handguns as a way of disarming “the son of Ham,” whose “cowardly practice of ‘toting’ guns has been one of the most fruitful sources of crime…. Let a negro board a railroad train with a quart of mean whiskey and a pistol in his grip and the chances are that there will be a murder, or at least a row, before he alights.”
In the 1990s, “gun control” laws continue to be enacted so as to have a racist effect if not intent.