I don’t own a bump stock. Quite frankly, I never saw the point. It’s a tactical toy. A convenient way to dump lead down range. Whatever joy that is gleaned from bump firing is, at least in my mind, offset by the cost of all the ammo used (Mag dumps are only fun when someone else is footing the bill).
But let me be clear. This is not about me or my personal feelings. This is about gun rights. Period. The ATF is currently seeking public comment on whether bump stocks should be regulated under the NFA as “machine guns.” This is our opportunity to tell the agency that bump stocks are NOT machine guns.
What’s funny is that the ATF already knows this. On two separate occasions, the agency determined that bump stocks do not fit the definition of machine guns. First in 2010, and then again in 2012. Basically, we are reminding the agency to uphold an almost decades-old standard.
The best explanation on why bump stocks fall outside the definition of machine guns comes courtesy of Rick Vasquez, Former Assistant Chief and Acting Chief of the ATF’s Firearms Technology Branch. In a document titled, “Slide Fire Analysis,” he wrote:
The Slide Fire does not fire automatically with a single pull/function of the trigger. It is designed to reciprocate back and forth from the inertia of the fired cartridge. When firing a weapon with a Slide Fire, the trigger finger sits on a shelf and the trigger is pulled into the trigger finger. Once the rifle fires the weapon, due to the push and pull action of the stock and rifle, the rifle will reciprocate sufficiently to recock and reset the trigger. It then reciprocates forward and the freshly cocked weapon fires again when the trigger strikes the finger on its forward travel.
After lengthy analysis, ATF could not classify the slide fire as a machinegun or a machinegun conversion device, as it did not fit the definition of a machingun as stated in the GCA and NFA.
That first sentence couldn’t be more clear. “The Slide Fire does not fire automatically with a single pull/function of the trigger.” While a user may be able to fire a rifle more quickly with a bump stock, it’s still one round per one trigger pull. There is no full auto fire. Case closed.
The deadline to weigh in is Jan. 25. Thousands of gun owners have already submitted comments. Now it’s your turn. Click here to get started. It’ll take only a few minutes.
If ATF does classify bump stocks as machine guns, this would set a dangerous precedent. Many other commonly owned and widely popular triggers and accessories would suddenly be on the chopping block. Don’t let that happen. Speak up!