Why a Suppressor is Not a Silencer

An Opinion By William J. Ellis, Guest Contributor. September 18th, 2017

1: How Semantics Are Defeating Sensible Gun Legislation

The Hearing Protection Act of 2017 is still awaiting a hearing in Congress. (Editor's note: We since have on the table the "Sportsmen's Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act", which seeks to incorporate suppressors - see item 9/12/17). The bill seeks to lift the restrictions placed on the use of suppressors put in place by the National Firearms Act of 1934. This earlier act requires additional, lengthy background checks on those who would like to buy a suppressor, and imposes a $200 tax on their sale. It also proposes that suppressors no longer be counted as equivalent to handguns, as per the Gun Control Act of 1968, lifting the requirement for a NICS check during the purchase of suppressors.

Though the bill is eminently sensible, debate about it has been characterized by a stunning level of ignorance by those who oppose it. It seems that some Democrats, in particular, have never actually used a suppressor, but are nevertheless absolutely sure that they oppose them.

If you’re reading this, I’m betting that you’ve used a “silencer”, and what I am about to say will not be news to you. However, in case there are any liberals reading, let me enlighten you: guns fitted with suppressors are still incredibly loud.

The debate about the bill is sadly an example of one of the long-standing problems about discussions of Second Amendment rights in the US. Those who actually use guns on a daily basis, and know how they work, argue reasonably that certain restrictions should be relaxed. .......

There are many - mostly the anti-gun groups, who are convinced that a suppressor reduces sound totally. From this misconception they progress to insisting that a ''silenced'' firearm is totally deadly and the tool of a killer. One thing they seem to forget is the increase in overall size when a suppressor is fitted, apart from which, as we know, the criminals will use what they want regardless.

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