GOP Senators Introduce SHUSH Act: A Push To Deregulate Suppressors

(AP Photo/Lisa Marie Pane)

The dichotomy between the two major parties is borderline laughable, particularly when it comes to the right to keep and bear arms. Last week Tom Knighton reported on democrats’ push to outlaw silencers and now we’re talking about renewed efforts to deregulate silencers. The SHUSH Act was introduced in the last congress, and it was announced on April 16, 2021 that it is being introduced again. From a press release, we have the following:

Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Mike Lee (R-Utah), and John Cornyn (R-Texas) this week introduced the Silencers Helping Us Save Hearing Act of 2021 (SHUSH Act), a bill to eliminate the unnecessary regulation of suppressors. The House companion legislation is sponsored by Rep. Bob Good (R-Va.).

When so-called common sense gun laws are discussed, honestly, the deregulation of silencers or suppressors fall into that category. Not a mythical “common sense” that exists only in freedom hating Utopian society, but real common sense; like “glowing cherry red metal is hot”. Suppressors make firearms less dangerous. It’s that simple. The sound that emits from a gun shot is over one million times louder than that of normal conversational speech. Suppressors can lower those decibels to a level that is still dangerous to hearing, but much less. The onerous paperwork and tax associated with the procurement of suppressors, and outright prohibition of them in some states, really does need to be overhauled. Believe it or not, the UK actually does a better job of regulating suppressors than the United States, as a 2014 American Rifleman article pointed out:

The reason UK shooters are so keen on moderators really boils down to common sense and courtesy…Even with the small calibers, UK shooters are quite concerned about controlling noise, and thus their reliance on suppressors. Plenty of rural country remains, but most is home to small farms and scattered residences so that shooting and hunting necessarily occur within earshot of others. Brit riflemen want to be neighborly, and that consideration may prove important in preserving the rights they still have.

Not everyone is pleased by this prospect though. Beyond Senator Bob Menendez and Representative Bonnie Watson Coleman’s cleverly named HEAR Act, posing to outlaw these items, there was further outcry by anti-freedom zealots, as reported:

Nancy Halden, Communications Director at the Gun Violence Prevention Center, disagrees.

“They’ve been trying to deregulate silencers for several years now and we are opposed to that, and the reason is that silencers have been successfully regulated since 1934… During that time, silencers and machine guns were regulated, and if you wanted to own one, you have to undergo a background check and you have to be fingerprinted and the government has to know that you have one,” she explains. “And that’s because they were used to terrorize people, and they still can be.”

According to Halden, mass shootings occur almost daily now, and you never hear about a mass shooting with a silencer.

“That is because they are successfully regulated. That law has been successful and it shouldn’t be undone,” she states.

I think we’re comparing apples to oranges here. “Mass shootings”, whichever definition one chooses to elect to use are usually gang related or so deigned to be acts of terror. Silencing shots would not fit the modus operandi of a terrorist.  The lack of proliferation of suppressors is falsely stated, with a black market that is flourishing on the internet. If someone wants to get a suppressor, they can do so very easily, in some cases all one needs to do is be scrolling through their social media page. One such instance lead to the arrest of a New Jersey man that thought he was purchasing fuel filters, but instead they were incomplete suppressors, and landed him in hot water.

I would be remiss if I did not ask Halden if murder is not successfully regulated in her opinion, one of the oldest laws in recorded history on the books. The deregulation of suppressors will not only be “neighborly” as described above, remove a black market, and also be safer for the user and those nearby.

Senators Cruz, Lee, and Cornyn need to be saluted for stepping up to the plate and bringing forward this legislation.  While this measure and similar ones have been introduced in the past, the only way they will ever see the light of day is if they keep being brought up, and support from constituents. If you believe in protecting your hearing and being neighborly, contact your legislators to tell them to support this measure. Further, reach out to Senator Bob Menendez and Representative Bonnie Watson Coleman’s offices and tell them to keep New Jersey’s crummy polices and laws in New Jersey, perhaps focus on meaningful legislation that will lower crime in cities like Newark, Camden, and Trenton. It’s safe to say whatever Menendez thinks will work, won’t.