Tag Archives: Machinegun

Theoretically Speaking

There is a semi-known NRA apologist who has been advocating for the NRA position of preemptive surrender on bump-fire stocks. I’m going to quote him, but I’m not about to give him free traffic with a link. Nor will I name him, as he seeks his little moments of fame. I only use his words at all because he’s the perfect example of poor thinking on the subject. (You can copy/paste the quotes into a search engine to find the blogger and post to which I refer.)

“I’m very sorry our great-grandparents abandoned Machine Gun Hill in the 1930s. None of us alive today were there. A lot of people seem to want to die on Bump Stock Hill. It’s not that I don’t want to fight, it’s that I’m not going to fight for something I can’t win or can’t defend successfully. I’m going to strengthen my lines against attacks on my flanks and leave that indefensible position to those foolish enough to fight for it.”

He may have forgotten that the NRA abandoned Machinegun Hill. And why is the bump-fire hill worth losing as well?

“The overriding goal is to save semi-automatic firearms as an entire class (i.e. they don’t get to just ban scary looking semi-autos) . We have to fight that with everything we got.”

But that is exactly what he’s giving up.

Every bump-fire ban bill in DC has specifically addressed rate of fire. Every state and local bill I looked at did the same.

The current Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on classifying bump-fire stocks as machineguns also addresses rate of fire.

In every case, bump-fire stocks (and trigger cranks and “Multi-burst Trigger Activators”) are bad merely because they assist the shooter in approaching the firearm’s inherent theoretical maximum rate of fire. The semiautomatic rate of fire is the problem.

Take away the bump-fire stock, crank, or multi-burp shoulder thingy, and the evil — to the gun ban bunnies — rate of fire remains.

Does anyone reading this honestly doubt that establishing the precedent of the theoretical rate of fire being the problem is exactly what they want?

The NPRM would make bump-fire stocks (“bump-stock-type devices” -snerk-) “machineguns” because the rifles fire fast. “Oh, look; it still fires fast, without the BSTD. Still a machingun, folks. Turn ’em in.”

All the proposed rules and legislation ban anything that assists in approaching the theoretical maximum rate of fire. It was never sloppy language in Feinstein’s proposal that would include aftermarket springs and triggers. They can assist in approaching that theoretical max.

So do quick-change detachable magazines. And fixed auto-feeding magazines.

The “problem” is that semiautos fire quickly, therefore they will be classed as machineguns, too. Eventually. That’s the slippery slope that Pelosi advocated, and that spoiled brat Tarr.

Mr. Forget-that-hill-follow-me-to-this-one is giving away the sloped hillside they need. Congratulations, NRA-boy.

“I believe in our current political situation, the ATF classification is the path of least damage to the overall gun rights movement.”

In fact, it’s worse than the legislation, for two reasons.

1) Legislation requires at least two votes and the President’s signature, which would give us someone to fight.

2) The ATF rule proposal is based on an outright lie about how bump-fire stocks work (continuous fire with a single operation of the trigger). That sets a second precedent, that they can lie with impunity. As Michael Z. Williamson noted, “this opens the floodgates for ANY bureaucrat to declare ANYTHING illegal.” By bureaucratic fiat. No vote. No “throw the bastards out” in midterms. With no recourse but to the Supreme Court which has been refusing to hear any RKBA appeal.


Carl is an unpaid TZP volunteer. If you found this post useful, please consider dropping something in his tip jar. He could use the money, what with truck repairs and bills.

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