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Bumpstocks: If You Can’t Win, Change the Rules

Bump Fire stock

Bumpstocks have been on the hit list for some time now. Not because they are intrinsically dangerous in the hands of hundreds of thousands of gun owners, but because one miscreant, a murderer, decided to use one in a horrific crime. Politicians and anti gunners, as usual, have decided to blame the implement and not the criminal. As a result, under the direction of President trump, the Department of Justice has reclassified bump stocks as machine guns. The ruling becomes official when it is placed on the Federal Register, likely this Friday, December 21, 2018. At that time, it will kick off a 90-day clock to either destroy or surrender your scapegoat bumpstock.

Bump Fire stock
On the urging of President Trump, The DOJ has reclassified bump-style stocks as machine guns.

Previously, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) had classified bumpstocks as an accessory. Due to the recoil of the firearm, the trigger was depressed and reached reset. Therefore, it was not considered an automatic weapon or machine gun. However, President Trump called on the Justice Department to ban bump stocks. As a result, the Justice Department took a “fresh look” at the case law, technology, and the devices and their functionality “in light of modern developments.” Lo and behold, the Justice Department magically concluded that bump-fire stocks, “slide-fire” devices, and devices with certain similar characteristics all fall within the prohibition on machine guns by allowing a “shooter of a semiautomatic firearm to initiate a continuous firing cycle with a single pull of the trigger,” and therefore, they are illegal under federal law.

The question was posed, “How many of bump fire-style devices are out there?” Since they were not previously regulated, no one actually knows. As one official said, “bump stocks aren’t widespread, but they are not uncommon. Isn’t there something about “in common usage” that might apply here?

 Surrender or be Destroyed

“A current possessor may destroy the device or abandon it at the nearest ATF office, but no compensation will be provided for the device. Any method of destruction must render the device incapable of being readily restored to its intended function.”

President Trump said he would never go against the Second Amendment. Do you consider this an infringement against the Second Amendment? While bump-style stocks are not the most important thing on my wish list, any infringement is a step too far and a slippery slope in my opinion. I am sure many of you feel the same. However, before the Trump bashing gets out of control, think of the alternative had Trump not been elected—President Hillary Clinton. This is a loss in my opinion, but we are still way ahead with President Trump as far as the 2A fight goes.

This ban is not unexpected. In October, President Trump told the National Rifle Association that “bump stocks are gone.” A spokesperson for the NRA said in October 2017 that the ATF “should review bump-fire stocks to ensure they comply with federal law,” but made clear that the NRA opposed the broader gun-control legislation raised by some in Congress.

Pro Second Amendment groups are surely lining up to file suit to block the new bump stock ban. Which group or groups do you think have the best chance at overturning the DOJ’s ruling? Do you think bump-style stocks should be classified as machine guns? Share your answers in the comment section.

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Comments (45)

  1. Bump stocks are pricy, all but useless devices that require some modification of the firearm on which they are installed and totally useless, except on certain styles of weapons. That being said, this is just more over-reaching of a bloated federal government. Anything that infringes on the rights of legal firearm owners is to be opposed. In the same vein, ‘add on devices that can cause semiautomatic weapons fire as automatics, almost all semiautomatic rifles can be turned into ‘full-auto’ by using a bootlace. I’ve done this and it works quiet well, no overpriced devices needed. Wikihow has/had a page on google showing how this can be done. What next; make owning bootlaces illegal?

  2. Yeah, I’ve got one. I’ve “played” with it three times. It sits in its box, waiting for the next time I can afford to play with it. Hey, they’re welcome to it, if they’d like to compensate me for it, as in the 4th amendment. It was cool at first, like all toys, but now languishes at the bottom of the “toy box”.
    Its not about the device. Its about the constant “chipping away” of our rights. If the left had their way, they’d abolish the entire constitution. They consider it outdated, and a racist document, written by rich white slave owners. REALLY!!!! WTF!!!! I only wish that throwing them a bone, in the shape of a bumpstock ban, would shut them the hell up. But, alas, it will only fuel their fire of violent resistance and give them an “I told ya so” moment that they’ll ride to death, then ride it some more.
    As for me, if possessing one makes me a felon, so be it. If they want it……buy it.

    As always
    Carry on

  3. I am no fan of bump stocks and don’t own one, but I do respect ALL the amendments. This may or may not be a violation of the 2nd amendment, but certainly of the 4th amendment which prohibits taking of property without just compensation. I think legal action might have more success based on that amendment.

  4. President Trump is a smart man and he knows two things about bump-stocks; they are stupid and they are legal. Though I have no use for these worthless accessories, I don’t want any new gun laws and I don’t think the president does either.. What’s going to happen is someone is going to challenge this rule, it will be struck down in court, bump stocks will be still be legal, and President Trump gets to say to all the Libs, “Hey, I tried, but you know, 2A and stuff. Oh, and thanks for the Wall money you traded for a bump stock ban, dumb ass!”

    1. Well…many people have no use for even firearms themselves, believing them to be worthless or even harmful. Contrary to what you and some “sour grapes” inflicted gun enthusiasts have said about bump stocks, my extensive, frame-by-frame video examination of previously available Youtube postings indicated that bump stocks can achieve an accuracy level and rate of fire comparable to M16-A1 rifles and many other machine guns. I’ve never fired a bump stock but nearly all of the world’s armed forces find such performance from small arms to be valuable and worthwhile. I’m going with what they say! Furthermore, in reading the writings of the founders of the U.S. and the U.S. Constitution itself, it is obvious to me that the founders intended for a ubiquitously armed populace (which they knew as “the militia”) to keep and bear arms that are comparable and equivalent to what the government possesses. They knew it was necessary to the security of a free state (the security of freedom itself, as embodied in a state).

  5. I’ve owned guns of some sort since I was old enough to hold a .22 rifle without falling over. My father (a former Marine) taught me basic firearm safety by the time I was five, and the Army picked up where he left off.

    Bump stocks run afoul of those long-learned lessons. They sacrifice proper control of the rifle in trade for allowing a fast spray in the general downrange direction. They have no legitimate place anywhere — in civilian hands for the same reason that full-auto weapons are regulated, or in military hands because they’re a kludge approach toward something they can already do better.

    If this is the hill that 2nd-Amendment groups opt to die on, then die they shall.

    1. If you read it, you will realize this is setting us up. No grandfather, no buyback, only 90 days to prevent being a felon…. When will this be for AR-15s? I’m definitely not a bump stock fan, but I am smart enough to see the slippery slope. Where is your line in the sand? Hope it’s not too late……

    2. There is no fighting this ruling it is done and most likely has been “done” for sometime, and remember once defence becomes the only option we have to protect any of the amendments … we already lost the battle. The truth of the matter everyone is this … All 50 states better all get on board with the legilazation of pot because it is gonna take a lot of government weed to make people forget about this one.

    3. This entire episode reminds me of the ruckus made over JARTS. They were fun, until some idiot got hurt. Now, all of us are denied having them. Same with bumpstocks. They’re fun. Many of my friends weren’t in the military, and haven’t had the exposure to automatic weapons I have. It was fun to see their faces as they ripped thru 30 rounds. But, alas, now that simple pleasure, just having fun with friends is being legislated away, just like jarts.
      They weren’t meant to be accurate, nor compete with a fully automatic weapon. They were, in my eyes, meant to be fun. Quit being so offended by stuff. EVERYBODY that shoots, wants to shoot a machine gun at least once. We did. Now it sits in its box.

      As always
      Carry on

    4. Saying that bump stocks have no legitimate place anywhere because 1) they don’t lend themselves to precise aimed fire, and 2) you don’t like them, is just the same as saying since you only shoot rifles that handguns should be banned.

      The point is, you don’t get to decide what RKBA provisions and devices are legitimate, and which aren’t. Bump stocks were a LEGAL shooting device, kind of a silly thing that I didn’t own, but a legal device to allow rapid plinking.

      If the government can simply make it illegal, and demand that you turn it in without compensation, then tomorrow they can do the same thing with your rifle. If you allow one you’re giving them the authority to ban the other, that’s the incredibly obvious point you’re missing.

      The biggest enemies gun owners have aren’t the gun banning, pro-criminal, anti-self-defense, unilateral victim disarmament bunch, like Feinstein, Newsom, and Schumer, it’s supposed pro-gun people raised with guns like yourself, who are quick to toss their fellow gun owners under the bus, because they don’t happen to like the gun or gun accessory they own.

      I remember when the AR-15 came out, and guys with Bastogne walnut wood stocked Winchester Model 70’s fell all over themselves condemning “plastic” guns.

      Gun banners love gun owners like that.

  6. Like all the other NFA regulations, this is just another feel good, window dressing law which will, in the majority of cases be enforced against citizens made criminals only thru the enactment of this restriction. And, as we all know, who respect the constitution as an iron clad restriction of government’s power over free citizens, another unconstitutional restriction of the 2A.

    Having stated that; I’m not a fan of bump-stocks, as I’m just to cheap to squander ammunition by indiscriminately blowing off hundreds of rounds. I’ve had the opportunity to fire automatic weapons and run fast boats, but it is a lot more fun when the government is paying for the ammo and the fuel.

    Who can predict future court rulings, especially in light of a recent refusal of an appeals court to accept a case re magazine capacity restriction.

    Let’s face it; these courts of appeal exist solely to protect citizens from government over-reach. When they decline to review these cases they are engaging in an in-your-face refusal to perform their raison d’etre. A brazen and cowardly act of an activist bench. Willfully disregarding their oath of office.

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