The oldest federal gun control laws is the National Firearms Act, a law which controls the lawful sale of machine guns, among other things.
It’s long been touted as a successful bit of law. In fact, if you cherry-pick the statistics sufficiently, it’s kind of hard to argue otherwise. Then again, that’s true of any cherry-picked statistic.
But the truth of the matter is that like any other gun control law, if someone wants a machine gun and isn’t interested in doing it lawfully, there will be a way for them to get one.
A man in Texas was just sentenced for doing precisely that.
A 22-year-old Lubbock man was sentenced Thursday to two and 1/2 years in prison after admitting to ordering parts to convert AR-15 rifles into machine guns.
Christopher James Garcia faced up to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty in July to a count of possession of a machine gun.
U.S. District Judge James Wesley Hendrix sentenced him to 30 months in prison.
The charge against Christopher James Garcia came April 27 and resulted from a Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that began when United States Customs agents in Louisville, Kentucky, intercepted a package from Hong Kong, China bound for Lubbock, according to a criminal complaint filed by ATF agents.
An ATF agent inspected the contents of the box and recognized them as drop-in auto sears, which when installed into an AR-15 allows the weapon to fire more than one round with a single trigger pull. The package contained 10 drop-in auto sears, the complaint states.
Under the Gun Control Act and National Firearms Act, the parts are considered machineguns.
The package also contained the “leg” of a Glock Machine Gun Conversion device that allows a Glock pistol to fire more than one round with a single trigger pull.
Now, Garcia admitted to carrying guns while conducting drug deals, which means he wasn’t exactly a law-abiding citizen in the first place.
As such, no one should be surprised that he ended up finding a way to get his hands on conversion kits for either AR-15s or Glock handguns. After all, if he’s willing to break one set of laws, why would we be shocked he’d break another set of laws?
And that’s how it goes with any gun control. Those who are law-abiding will be inhibited from doing whatever is restricted while the criminals will still find a way to break the law.
That’s true of assault weapon bans, prohibitions on concealed carry, magazine restrictions, or literally anything else you care to name.
Garcia was a criminal before he started trying to get his hands on machine guns. He’s not the first criminal who decided to get his hand on a machine gun in spite of the law. He will not be the last, either.
Yet some people look at this and shrug it off, all while ignoring that the law keeps most of us from lawfully getting machine guns despite the fact that none of us are criminals.
Then they wonder why we’re not willing to let them tread over the rest of our gun rights. It’s a shocker.