Let the ATF do it

U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan says the Trump administration should quickly move to ban “bump stocks,” the devices used in the Las Vegas mass shooting that allows semi-automatic weapons to fire more quickly.

Suspected Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock had equipped a dozen of his weapons with bump stocks, approved as legal by the government in 2010. Paddock is believed to have killed 58 people, leaving 500 injured.

A regulatory ban would be a smart, quick fix, Ryan says, easily done by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The NRA and most congressional Republicans agree, but Democrats and a handful of Republicans are calling on Congress to ban then through legislation, saying the ban would be more permanent.

In 2010, a company that manufactures bump stocks asked the ATF to rule whether the devices were subject to the 1986 gun law that banned civilian purchase or sales of any automatic weapons made after that date. The ATF at that time ruled the stocks were legal.

We are left to wonder whether the Democrats’ insistence on a legislative remedy is only a ploy to festoon such legislation with anti-gun add-ons threatening Second Amendment rights. It certainly would not be the first time that particular camel has tried to poke its nose into the tent.

If bump stocks are to be regulated, it seems to us, the ATF should take care of the matter. Leaving it to Congress just invites mischief.





One Response to Let the ATF do it

  1. Jim Schradle October 11, 2017 at 9:14 pm

    We go through this every time something happens. The Left says “ban everything,” the Right says “it’s a shooter problem, not an equipment problem.” But, this time the people who portray themselves to be on the Right are offering things to be banned. Very disconcerting situation.


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