AP Photo/Allen G. Breed, File
The bump stock ban is stupid. However, it’s the law. More specifically, it will be on Tuesday.
On that day, anyone with a bump stock will violate federal law. Not counting those attached to rifles lost in tragic boating accidents, that is.
Well, not anyone. One Utah man will be the exception. It seems he will be allowed to hold onto his bump stock while the rest of the country has to destroy or turn theirs in.
Come Tuesday, bump stock owners across the country will have to give up their firearm accessory or face the possibility of jail time and fines.
All of them, that is, except for at least one: noted Utah gun rights advocate and Utah Shooting Sports Council chairman Clark Aposhian.
A federal judge recently denied Aposhian’s attempt for an injunction that would allow him to keep his bump stock — a firearm attachment that modifies semi-automatic weapons to fire like a machine gun — until his lawsuit against Department of Justice and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) was settled.
The lawsuit, filed in January, argues that banning the bump stock, which was used in the 2017 Las Vegas massacre, is unconstitutional because it amounts to the executive branch rewriting laws, which the lawsuit sates is the job of Congress.
Aposhian’s attorneys appealed U.S. District Judge Jill Parrish’s March 8 decision to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, and Thursday that court issued a temporary stay, meaning Aposhian will get to keep his bump stock until his lawsuit is resolved.
Unfortunately, it looks like Aposhian is the only one impacted by the stay.
In theory, this signals there is a possibility of blocking the reclassification of bump stocks. That would probably be a good thing.
Unfortunately, I have a concern. It’s not about bump stocks, mind you. After all, there’s nothing about them that should be classified as machine guns. However, I think we all know that Congress would take action. In particular, the House would jump on board and issue a legislative ban. Based on the numbers shortly after Las Vegas, Republicans wouldn’t be our saviors.
The problem with this is that legislation that looked likely to pass was only sidelined because of the potentiality for a move from the Trump Administration to cover more than bump stocks. It included things like binary triggers and even competition triggers.
Should the bump stock ban be overturned, we’d have that fight to look forward to and I don’t want to trust the GOP on that front.
Still, this is good news, and I’m thrilled for Aposhian. It’s going to be interesting to watch him go on as the only legal bump stock owner in the nation, at least for a time. I fully expect he’ll have some difficulties as people try to report him for having an “illegal” device, only for police to learn he’s the exception to the rule.
Maybe, in time, the ban will be overturned, and we’ll stop trying to turn law-abiding gun owners into felons because of the actions of a third party.
I know, I know. A guy can dream.