Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Delaware's Attack on Second Amendment: Making Your Own Gun to Be Banned

Individuals have been making their own firearms for the entire history of the United States and before. Homemade guns are not as popular as factory made guns, because factory made guns are easily and cheaply available in the United States. The Second Amendment has guaranteed that right.

It is a part of the right to keep and bear arms to be able to procure arms. A basic and fundamental way to procure arms is to make your own. Most home manufacture of firearms is for hobby or experimental purposes, although considerable homemade guns are produced in localities with extreme restrictions on the ownership of guns.

Delaware is in the process of passing a statute to make it illegal to make your own firearms, or to even possess a piece of metal that is intended to be used to make a receiver. From the proposed statute, HB 277:
( ) “Unfinished firearm frame or receiver” means a firearm frame or receiver that requires further machining or molding in order to be used as part of a functional firearm, and which is designed and intended to be used in the assembly of a functional firearm.

( ) “Untraceable firearm” means an unlawfully manufactured firearm for which the sale or distribution chain from a licensed retailer to the point of its first retail sale cannot be traced by law enforcement officials.
 The law makes it illegal to make your own firearms:
§ 1463 Untraceable firearms; Class E or D felony.

(a) A person is guilty of possessing an untraceable firearm when then person knowingly possesses an untraceable firearm.

(b) A person is guilty of manufacturing an untraceable firearm when the person knowingly manufactures, assembles, causes to be manufactured or assembled, sells, or transfers an untraceable firearm.

(c) A person is guilty of manufacturing or distributing a firearm using a three-dimensional printer when the person does any one of the following:

(1) Uses a three-dimensional printer or similar device to manufacture or produce a firearm, firearm frame or receiver, magazine, or major firearm component when not licensed as a manufacturer.

(2) Distributes by any means, including the internet, to a person who is not licensed as a manufacturer, instructions in the form of computer-aided design files or other code or instructions stored and displayed in electronic format as a digital model that may be used to program a three-dimensional printer to manufacture or produce a firearm, firearm frame or receiver, magazine, or major component of a firearm.

(d) Possession of a untraceable firearm is a Class E felony.

(e) Manufacturing an untraceable firearm or manufacturing or distributing a firearm using a three-dimensional printer is a Class D felony.
The law, if passed, will be challenged in court, on both First and Second Amendment grounds. The law applies to people without any criminal record. People with felonies are already forbidden from owning firearms. This law is to prevent people who are not criminals from making their own firearms.

It is very new law to forbid law abiding individuals from making firearms for their own use. Such a law has only been passed in the last two years, to my knowledge.

It is a direct violation of the First Amendment to forbid the transmission of knowledge on how to make firearms with digital code.

This sort of law is common in countries without a Bill of Rights to limit the power of the government. It is an easily followed path of logic. The government forbids most people from buying guns. The people start to make their own. Then the government forbids the buying of gun parts. Then i forbids the buying or transfer of information of how to make guns.  It may forbid the ownership of machinery that can be used to make guns. Some raids in India, for example, show confiscated drills, welders, and files.

Nothing in the Second Amendment allows the government to create a registry of guns or to require them to be traced to the first retail sale. Such a thing is of virtually no use in solving crimes. Its sole purpose, it appears, is to pave the way for a registration system.

If Delaware passes this law, it will be following the steps of California (requires state serial number (following state manufacturing requirements), New Jersey (flat out ban), New York (firearm parts may only be sold to authorized buyers),  Washington (bans "undetectable" guns), Connecticut (requires a state issued serial number). These five states, and Delaware, if it passes the law, are all treading new ground with laws passed in just the last two years.

The Washington state law may not be precisely in this group, as the law bans "undetectable guns", and the vast majority of homemade guns are easily detectable.

I have yet to see any court challenge to these laws. There was a court challenge on the legal ability to make your own machine guns, in Arizona, in the 1990's. The Ninth Circuit upheld that right, and the Supreme Court refused to hear the case. However, the case was complicated by other factors, and the Supreme Court had not yet decided Heller.

It is not surprising the five states above, sans Washington, all heavily infringe on the exercise of Second Amendment rights, by refusing to allow legal carry of firearms by most of the population. They all have "may issue" laws, aggressively preventing most people from carrying firearms for self defense.

©2019 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch


Anonymous said...

Has any one read the tenth amendment lately? states have no constitutional authority to limit federally guaranteed rights. How many people need you have Shall Not be infringed explained to them? Or federal law is superior to state law. The USSC has ruled that the second amendment covers more than firearms to any thing that can be used in self defense. Another issue, lower courts (state courts) can not over rule the supreme court.

Anonymous said...

Ignore the tyrants and their diktats, make your firearms if you wish, and keep yer mouth shut about it. Armed Civil Disobedience frightens the despots in state government into inaction.

ScienceABC123 said...

Every year cars kill more people than guns. So are we going to ban kit cars now?

Tom Ray said...

In US v Stewart, Mr. Stewart was charged with making his own machine guns for personal use. The Supreme Court held the petition in that case until they decided Gonzalez v Raich, in which Ms. Raich was charged with growing her own cannabis for personal use. Having determined that Raich was affecting interstate commerce, the Supreme Court sent the Stewart case back to the 9th Circuit with a nice note saying they should reconsider the case in light of the Raich result. This resulted in the most sarcastic compliance ever from Judge Kozinsky, and the 9th held that making your own machine gun for personal use is a federal matter that affects interstate commerce.

Carl "Bear" Bussjaeger said...

HB 277 is worse than you think.

Dean Weingarten said...

Tom Ray:

Thanks for the reminder about Raich. Terrible decision.

Anonymous said...

most of the morons running for office could not pass a high school civics final exam an act is not an amendment. just like the recent impeachment effort. the house has sole authority to impeach/ indict , collect the evidence and testimony. after the house votes to impeach on that evidence and testimony the senate has sole authority to judge that evidence and testimony. there is no senate authority to add anything to what the house votes to pass. the articles of impeachment presented is what the senate is required to judge, Civics, a study of the constitution stopped being a required course and became an elective in 1970. the age of the last people required to take civics is 66.

Anonymous said...

The morons keep yelling plastic undetectable guns. show me a plastic gun that does not have a metal barrel? Metal cartridges? metal springs and screws? Firing pin? The plastic gun shown has a metal barrel. They are not undetectable.

Anonymous said...

Think about it Interstate commerce is a federal; ISSUE. the pot is not crossing state lines. There is no interstate issue. Home made guns are not to be sold there is no question of commerce, In state or interstate. There is no way to incorporate the commerce clause because it is against federal law to sell home made guns that do not leave the place of origin..