Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) introduced gun control aimed at law-abiding Americans on Tuesday. His bill has nine Republican co-sponsors, which means nine Republicans are willing to punish every law-abiding American for the behavior of one criminal in Las Vegas.
And they are doing all this to ban bump stocks, a product the ATF evaluated and approved in 2010.
The ATF approved the stocks because they are accessories for semiautomatics rather than conversion devices that turn semiautomatics into fully automatic weapons. Curbelo’s bill gets around the ATF’s approval by explicitly banning certain accessories for AR-15s, even if those accessories “[do] not convert the semiautomatic rifle into a machine gun.”
And like the Democrat bill–put forward by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)–Curbelo’s bill is already broader than bump stocks alone. In other words, it is a ban that will keep on giving for the Democrats and other gun control proponents.
Here are the nine Republicans who are co-sponsoring Curbelo’s bill:
- Rep. Peter King (R-NY)
- Rep. Leonard Lance (R-NJ)
- Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-PA)
- Rep, Ed Royce (R-CA)
- Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ)
- Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-MN)
- Rep. Ryan Costello (R-PA)
- Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL)
- Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA)
The push to ban bump stocks is especially rich in light of the fact that using the devices probably made the Vegas attacker less effective than he would have been without them. After all, bump stocks are made for novelty rather than precision. For this reason, U.S. Army Sergeant First Class special forces soldier Tony Cowden suggests the Vegas attacker could have been deadlier if he had shot slower with a rifle not outfitted with a bump stock:
— Justin Miller (@justinjm1) October 4, 2017
Moreover, the effect one achieves with a bump stock can be achieved with an index finger and a belt-loop; no bump stock device needed. So what will Republican gun controllers do if they ban bump stocks and realize that people are still having fun with their rifles via blue jean belt loops? Will they ban belt loops?
In summary–Bump stocks are accessories, not conversion kits. They are novelties that reduce accuracy by producing a short, rapid-fire effect that can be achieved using nothing more than a finger and belt loop. For these reasons, Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) stresses that bump stock gun control is part of a larger misdirection that creates a “slippery slope” Democrats can exploit for more gun control in the future. Yet Reps. Peter King, Leonard Lance, Patrick Meehan, Ed Royce, Chris Smith, Erik Paulsen, Ryan Costello, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, and Charlie Dent are rallying behind Curbelo’s gun control bill.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of Bullets with AWR Hawkins, a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.