For many Americans, the tragic killing of 58 Las Vegas concert-goers in October 2017 made all too vivid the dangers posed by bump stocks, attachments that convert semiautomatic firearms into automatic weapons. Although the Las Vegas shooter’s motive remains unclear, there’s no doubt that these devices in the hands of someone seeking to cause harm—whether based on personal grievances or domestic or international extremism—present a grave threat to security here in the homeland. U.S.
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This week saw law and common sense unite in opposition to the widespread availability of dangerously untraceable, undetectable guns.
Cody Wilson’s legal battle to post his plastic gun schematic is awful, pitting speech values against human lives, raising the specter of more mass shootings, and casting a dark shadow on what should be the bright new technology of 3-D printing. In times like these, it's tempting to wish that a few magic words could make the schematic—and all its legal and moral baggage—simply disappear.
As three-dimensional printers have become widely available in electronics and appliance stores, they have begun to raise hard legal and regulatory issues related to firearms. The laws that govern firearms were not written with 3D printers in mind, and it remains to be seen how widely available self-made firearms will be treated by our firearm regulatory rules.
Today, the Senate will vote on proposed gun control legislation. While it is unclear if Senate Democrats will be able to garner enough support from Republican colleagues to pass any of the Democrat-backed proposals—which are being presented as amendments to the Commerce, Justice and Science appropriations bill, which was already on the floor—here, we offer a round-up of the various proposals.
I. Preventing the Sale of Guns to Suspected Terrorists