The National Rifle Association is giving in. Following the tragedy in Las Vegas, the largest mass-shooting in American history, the powerful gun lobbying group is open to further regulations on guns.
Because Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock used what’s known as “bump stocks” to carry out his killing spree, the NRA has announced its willingness to support measures to curtail the use of the gun enhancement.
The group put out the following statement: “The NRA believes that devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully-automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulations. Despite the fact that the Obama administration approved the sale of bump fire stocks on at least two occasions, the National Rifle Association is calling on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) to immediately review whether these devices comply with federal law.”
So what are bump stocks? They help any semi-automatic gun fire in a more rapid fashion. Here’s how The Washington Post describes them: “They essentially move a gun back and forth rapidly against a shooter’s trigger finger so that one pull of the trigger can fire dozens of rounds in seconds.”
You can see a picture of a bump stock below:
This openness to further regulation comes at a politically fraught time. Our country just saw the deadliest mass shooting ever committed by one individual on our soil. Politicians from both sides of the aisle have come out in favor or enacting further regulations, or straight up banning, bump stocks.
— Emily Sinovic (@EmilySinovic) October 5, 2017
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) October 5, 2017
Even the White House has said it’s open to a “conversation” on banning bump stocks:
White House doesn’t come out for or against a ban on bump stocks, but says “we’d like to be part of that conversation” on a possible bill. pic.twitter.com/WCihz9aUGd
— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) October 5, 2017
The NRA also likely sense where the political winds are blowing. Not even a day after the Vegas attack, Hillary Clinton put the group on blast:
Our grief isn't enough. We can and must put politics aside, stand up to the NRA, and work together to try to stop this from happening again.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) October 2, 2017
If I were the NRA, here’s my political calculation: Many Americans want action taken after the massacre in Vegas. Bump stocks aren’t crucial to the functionality of a gun – they’re an enhancement. If you let Congress regulate them further, it will appease those who demand steps be taken to prevent a disaster like this from happening again. In the end, the right to own firearms in general is not impacted.
Of course, not everyone is happy with this capitulation. Gun Owners of America has come out against the regulation:
Gun Owners of America OPPOSES any restrictions or bans bump stock devices https://t.co/MjXG8Euwdc
— GOA (@GunOwners) October 5, 2017
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