Do Bump Stock Bans Make Sense?

You are doubtless aware that a bump stock ban has been adopted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco * Firearms effective March 26, 2019.  Doesn’t Congress have to pass a ban?  The way BATF did this was by redefining a bump stock to be a machine gun, requiring you to destroy it or turn it into BATF.  What?

The federal law definition of a machine gun is a gun that fires multiple rounds by one function of the trigger.  Now the Obama Administration approved bump stocks because each time the trigger is pulled, it fires one round, even though you only pull the trigger once.  Within the strict reading of the law, a bump stock is not a machine gun.  But watch videos of bump stocks in use and tell me that isn’t a machine gun!  In the spirit of the law, if not the letter a bump stock is a full auto weapon.

Now, I think the current ban on manufacture of new machine guns for private ownership is both stupid and unconstitutional.  So why not fight this ban?

  1. Because every semi-auto long gun can become a machine gun. Can you think of an easier way to simplify bans on modern sporting rifles?
  2. This is a regulation, not a law. A later administration could relax or repeal it.  Not likely, but much easier than getting a law repealed.


The other reason not to get too upset is that you do not need a bump stock.  You can achieve the same result with something unbannable, cheap, and without a serial number: a rubber band.  This video shows how.  It is fiendishly clever.  If push comes to shove and we the deplorables need automatic weapons to defeat the fascists, we can be pretty sure the NRA (National Rubberband Association) will be there, protecting our right to keep and bear rubber bands.

Clayton E. Cramer teaches history at the College of Western Idaho. His most recently published book is Lock, Stock, and Barrel: The Origins of American Gun Culture.

Click Here to buy a copy on Amazon.

Clayton Cramer

Clayton Cramer – Conservative. Idaho. Software engineer. Historian. Trying to prevent Idiocracy from becoming a documentary.

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