So-called “ghost guns” are any firearm without a serial number. Anti-gunners have been focused on less than 80 percent receivers and 3D printed firearms as those seem to be the ones keeping them awake at night, though we still lack any hard numbers as to just how prevalent the “problem” of such weapons actually are. Instead, we get vague comments about how the problem is supposedly growing, but little in the way of actual facts.

However, this comes from people who think you can regulate away any problem with firearms. They seem to believe we’re really just a bit of legislation away from a gun-free Utopia.

Yet that’s not true. It’s not even close to true, actually.

For one thing, 3D printer files are already out “in the wild,” so to speak. Anyone who wants to build a weapon with such files already can. You’re not putting that genie back in the bottle.

But, even if you could, that doesn’t stop people like this individual charged for something police found on them during protests in Seattle.

Federal authorities in Seattle have filed their first criminal case stemming from violence during recent protests.

A Seattle police sergeant said he found a homemade firearm – called a “slam fire” gun – on Devinare Parker after Parker threw a beer can at the officer’s head on May 31, according to a criminal complaint filed in US District Court in Seattle late Tuesday afternoon.

An agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) determined “that the improvised firearm functioned as a firearm,” that is capable of firing shotgun shells, according to the complaint.

Parker is charged with Unlawful Possession of a Destructive Device.

This particular gun was made out of pieces of pipe held together with plumbing couplings. In other words, you can buy every item used to make it at Home Depot or Lowe’s.

I’ve long argued that anyone with a competent knowledge of machining could build an AR-15 from raw materials and that it wouldn’t be feasible to try and regulate manufacturing down to that degree. However, I overlooked these more simple improvised firearms that can be just as deadly. In fact, the gun in question measured just 13 inches, making it much easier to hide than many other weapons.

These kinds of weapons don’t require a competent level of any kind of knowledge. All it requires is someone with the most basic of skills.

That means these kinds of weapons can be produced by pretty much anyone. The only reason we don’t see more of these is that guns are easy enough for criminals to buy off the black market. They’re better quality firearms with multiple shots available. Yet if all of those disappeared, we’d start to see these kinds of guns appearing more and more often.

What then?

Would we start to regulate plumbing supplies? Would we have to undergo background checks for pipe? Would only licensed plumbers be allowed to buy them, thus ending DIY projects for millions of Americans?

Honestly, you’re not going to stop bad people from getting guns. This case in Seattle should prove it quite well.