Ghost gun laws appear to be getting an overhaul at the hands of the justice department following an executive order from President Joe Biden. Driven primarily by ignorance about firearms and fear mongering based on that ignorance, this new direction in the enforcement of existing laws seeks to change the definition of firearms and how they are regulated without the approval of congress, where our elected legislators have refused to further curtail second amendment rights. If you’ve been considering purchasing a ghost gun kit, your right to do so is in danger.
The Reason Behind The Change
With the election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, along with a supporting cast of representatives and senators providing the executive branch a slim legislative majority, most of us expected that new gun control initiatives would be a priority. We weren’t wrong. While the narrow majority may not allow simple passage of laws in congress carte blanche, it does provide the executive branch more leeway to make administrative rulings on how laws are interpreted, which is what the executive order that effectively creates federal ghost gun laws does.
The Fear And Confusion Around Ghost Guns
The term “Ghost Guns” is not an official designation, but slang used to describe weapons that don’t carry a serial number. Law-abiding citizens use it to mean homemade firearms produced by second amendment enthusiasts who enjoy building their own weapons. More unsavory elements of society often use it to refer to guns that have had the serial numbers removed, an illegal act that renders them harder to trace. Media and some activist law enforcement agencies use the terms interchangeably, because “ghost guns” sounds scary, and combining the two for larger numbers has a more dramatic impact.
To be clear, there is no evidence that common criminals, not known for their work ethic, are using homemade guns from ghost gun kits to carry out a large number of crimes. Unfortunately, by lumping both “types” of ghost guns into a single category of non-serialized firearms, it is also hard to determine the exact numbers of homemade firearms used in crime. Since Criminals are already ignoring the law when they remove a serial number, they are unlikely to pay attention to any new regulations, making the only way the incoming administration can be seen to be doing something about “ghost guns” is the act of passing rules that restrict the right of law-abiding firearms enthusiasts.
What The New Rules Mean For Makers
The proposed rules that cover ghost gun kits are left intentionally vague. When you’re talking about parts kits, you’re not talking about a completed firearm, and rather than set a solid metric manufacturers can use to determine if their parts kits now qualify as firearms that must be serialized and shipped to FFL holders, the proposed rules apply to those kits that can be readily made into a functional firearm. To alleviate potential confusion from this vague terminology, readily is defined as “a process that is fairly or reasonably efficient, quick, and easy, but not necessarily the most efficient, speedy, or easy process.” While additional factors will be addressed, such as how to measure the further vagueness in this clarification, they remain largely subjective in interpretation, leaving ghost gun laws muddled, ghost gun kit manufacturers in uncertain waters, and homemade gun hobbyists at a loss about how to proceed with their projects.
What Other Laws Are On The Horizon?
While these rule changes may be getting the lion’s share of attention, they aren’t the only threats to your second amendment rights. Initiatives pushed by anti-gun organizations, hostile government officials, and fellow citizens reacting out of fear and ignorance are spreading across the country. With the attention being generated by federal regulatory actions, expect more state-level pushes to curtail established rights as well.
What You Can Do
While the future of ghost gun laws may look tenuous, there are steps you can take now to protect your rights.
- Make Sure Your Voice Is Heard Directly – The proposed rules are posted in for public commentary until August 19th, 2021, which means you still have an opportunity to log your opposition.
- Contact Your Elected Officials – Your federal representatives have a duty to act as a check on the executive branch’s power. While it may be difficult with a minority in both chambers of Congress, they should still know you want them to stand up for the second amendment. State and local elected officials need to understand that ordinances or bills brought forward under their governments also need to respect your right to self-defense and legal pursuit of second amendment hobbies.
- Stay Informed – Keeping abreast of developments in ghost gun laws and broader second amendment issues is the surest way to avoid being blindsided by regulatory changes. There will be opportunities to speak out as new rules are introduced, passed, and entered into practical enforcement. Blogs like our own and organizations such as Defense Distributed are working to make sure you know about emerging threats as they become known.
- Make Sure Your Projects Are Completed While They Are Legal – While the rules may become more strict for manufacturers and sellers of ghost gun kits, those rules won’t affect kits already bought and in legal possession of the enthusiast who is making their own firearm. If you’ve had your eye on an 80% lower, now is the time to get your order in.
Order Your Parts And Kits Today
Now is the time to get prepared before changes in ghost gun laws go into effect. We carry a full line of legal parts, kits, and tools to help you explore the American tradition of homemade firearms. Build your next gun with JSD Supply.