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Bump stocks ban: should it be part of gun control reform?

Screen shot from CBS Evening News' YouTube video: How Las Vegas gunman might have turned a rifle into a rapid-fire weapon
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In the wake of the Las Vegas shooting something appears to be happening that has not happened in decades. There is a bipartisan movement on gun control. Both parties have indicated that they could possibly reach an agreement on the banning of bump stocks. While this is not the sweeping gun control reform that many have dreamed of, it is a small first step towards possibly reaching a common ground.

What are bump stocks anyway? Well they are a gun accessory that lets a semi-automatic rifle fire like an automatic one. It allows the recoil from the gun shot to help make the gun fire faster. It bumps the stock of the gun into your shoulder and allows the pressure on the trigger to continue firing the gun.

The problem with bump stock is that guns that use them become inaccurate. The recoil from firing forces the user’s torso backward causing the shooter to miss a target more often. The only apparent good thing about bump stocks is that it lets you put a lot of bullets in the air, which is a possible reason the Las Vegas shooter used them.  According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, he had twelve guns modified with bump-fire stocks. It would appear that he was not interested in accuracy, just volume.

The volume of bullets put in the air is the main reason people want to see bump stocks banned. Some argue that hunters use them, but others wonder why any hunter would need to fire that fast with that many bullets? Those opposed to the use of bump stocks see their removal as increasing the security of the community and making mass shootings less likely to happen. If by chance mass shootings continued to happen, then at least the carnage would be lessened.

The people who want to retain bump stocks as an option see them as being protected by the second amendment. They are also quick to point out that the Obama administration legalized bump stocks. To them, the attack on bump stocks is a hypocrisy by people who supported the administration that legalized them. Another reason they feel that bump stocks should not be banned is it would be a waste of time. Bump stocks have been on the market for years, so there would be no way to prevent there use again in a mass shooting. To bump stock supporters, this is nothing but playing politics with a tragedy.

In this video CBS news shows how the Las Vegas gunman may have turned his rifle into something similar to an automatic weapon.

The Issue

Should bump stocks be banned? Are bump stocks nothing more than a device good for mass murder, or is this an attempt by politicians to score cheap political points by going after a law abiding person’s second amendment rights?

In support of banning bump stocks

Many people in favor of banning bump stocks believe they are basically devices to turn legal riffles into illegal riffles. Bump stocks don’t help hunters shoot better, they make them shoot worse. They are a tool used by mass murderers and should be banned.

In opposition to banning bump stocks

Those who don’t want bump stocks banned view such a ban as an attack on second amendment rights, and an act of political hypocrisy. Banning bump stocks is a giant wast of time since there are so many out there already. Even if they are banned from this point forward, it will not prevent them from being used in another mass shooting.

So, where do you stand on the banning of bump stocks?

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