following alert is from Gun
Owners of America:
Thursday, February 22, 2007
The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
has been on a tear under the administration of Attorney General
Manufacturers of various products have been told in writing that
their products are not a firearm and that they can be marketed
outside the federal paperwork system for selling firearms. Then,
months or years later, BATFE sends another letter reversing the
The Congressional Research Service found in 2005 (ATF Firearms
Procedures) that BATFE has no written procedures for determining
what is a firearm. The "process" is arbitrary, and the
string of reversals in recent months shows how capricious a BATFE
Historic Arms received a letter of determination in 1995 that
its BM-3000 was not a firearm. Indeed, Historic Arms had designed
the product as an accessory for a machine gun to fire different
kinds of ammunition than the gun had originally been designed
to fire. For 11 years, the company manufactured their product
without incident. But in 1996, Historic Arms received a second
letter determining that the product was actually a machine gun!
As in other cases, BATFE wanted all the company's products sent
to Washington along with all the names of the customers who had
purchased the item.
In 2004, the BATFE determined that the Akins Accelerator was a
"non firearm" accessory that allowed a shooter to bump
fire a semi-auto and considerably increase the rate of fire. This
year, BATFE has determined that the trigger finger which is bumping
the trigger is itself a machine gun! Again, send in all the product
and customer names.
For years, Centerfire Systems had a parts kit that it sold for
machine guns. Now, six years later, BATFE has reversed itself
on this company. And, the Bureau has put Centerfire Systems through
the same drill -- send in their products and their customer lists.
In a related matter involving the definition of what makes a gun
a "gun," KT Ordnance was raided by BATFE last year and
its products were confiscated. What were the dangerous items?
A parts kit for customers to legally make their own (unregistered)
firearm. Again, BATFE wanted the customer list.
The capricious activities by the BATFE wreck economic chaos on
these companies, in addition to violating both theirs and their
customers' rights protected by the Second Amendment.
It is time for the BATFE to put their procedures for determining
what is a firearm, and what is a machine gun, in writing.
This latest bait and switch is but another backdoor effort on
the part of the federal government to attack gun ownership. This
time the attack is on manufacturers.