Suppressors and "Common Use"

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Gridley, Apr 12, 2019.

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  1. Gridley

    Gridley Member

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    Standard-capacity magazines being items in "common use" apparently helped win the recent California battle on magazine limits (not a total victory, to be sure, but still a win).

    I've been seeing suppressors more and more recently; are they already in "common use" from a legal standpoint? Headed in that direction?

    If those of us who live where suppressors are legal buy them (in compliance with the NFA and all other applicable laws), might it drive us to a threshold where they become items in "common use"?

    As I said on another thread, I'd be a lot more likely to jump through the hoops to buy a suppressor if I thought it would make it easier for me to buy more down the road.

    Posing this mostly as a legal question so I stuck it here rather than activism or NFA items.
     
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  2. <*(((><

    <*(((>< Member

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    I'm doing my part ;)
     
  3. crestoncowboy

    crestoncowboy Member

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    I really really need to do my part. And I know the sherrif and can get everything done. But the problem is that many of us are hoping for less restriction, money, and hassle so are waiting. I know from seeing co-workers get their ccw that it costs about 1/3 of what it did 15 years ago and with way less running around. I think a lot of us are waiting and watching to see if suppressors do the same. I'd definitely get it done if I thought it would help deregulate things though for the future, and younger folks
     
  4. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    The hopes around the Hearing Protection Act or other congressional de-regulation got pumped up way beyond what was reasonable... and when that went nowhere, it really let a lot of air out of this segment.
     
  5. Gridley

    Gridley Member

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    I was thinking more of a court challenge. Agreed that, sadly, Congress is unlikely to do anything reasonable any time soon.
     
  6. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    I know, I just think that the common-ness of use actually got set back a little bit by the HPA hype/bust.
     
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  7. Texas10mm

    Texas10mm member

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    It's amazing you can get a ticket for not having a muffler on your vehicle but have to jump through hoops to get one for your firearm.
     
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  8. pdsmith505

    pdsmith505 Member

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    Recently, the 10th Circuit opined that silencers were not "arms", only accessories since they are not essential to the function of an arm, and thus fall outside of the 2nd amendment.

    That is the first hurdle. "In common use for lawful purposes" need not apply if the item isn't an "arm" to begin with, regardless of whether federal law classifies them as firearms for the purposes of the NFA.
     
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  9. alfsauve

    alfsauve Member

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    It's very doubtful there will be any move to loosen any existing restrictions on the national level. It seems to be about all we can do to mitigate any new restrictions.

    "Court" is an iffy thing and a big risk, because the court can come down against you.
     
  10. AlexanderA
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    AlexanderA Member

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    There are almost 200,000 registered, transferable machine guns. And many more suppressors and SBR's. Numbers like that could support a finding of "common use" -- if a court was inclined to go that way. The problem is that courts don't like to get that far out ahead of public opinion.
     
  11. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    The common use argument could be used to defeat a ban, perhaps--as it was in CA (temporarily)--but there's no ban on silencers and Heller tacitly acknowledged that it was ok to place restrictions (including registration) on gun ownership as long as those restrictions didn't amount to an effective ban.

    Remember that Heller was about a guy applying to register a handgun in DC and being refused because DC pretty much refused all applications to register handguns. Heller said that they had to let him register a handgun unless there was a legal reason to prohibit firearm ownership. In other words, Heller was all about making DC let Heller register a handgun. So it's hard to see how one could try to use the common use argument in Heller to undo a registration scheme.

    If the common use argument could made to reasonably apply to machineguns, that might work as there is effectively a ban on adding any new machineguns to the registry--similar to the ban on adding any new standard capacity magazines to the CA total. But I don't know that it could be made to reasonably apply. Even if one could argue that they are common in ownership--which is a tough sell all by itself--it would be very difficult to demonstrate that they are in common use.

    Probably academic as I don't think anyone's likely to expend effort in that direction.
     
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  12. GEM

    GEM Moderator Staff Member

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    The congressional leadership could not wait to ditch progun legislation. If those passed , that would negatively impact the fund raising. Trump’s election supposedly reduced NRA finances as he was a gift to the cause. Oh, well.
     
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  13. giggitygiggity

    giggitygiggity Member

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    If the Republicans were worth a darn, they would have stuck it to the Democrats by passing the HPA after the Las Vegas shooting, just to prove that emotions, political BS, and the actions of a single mad man will not impede pro-gun legislation. Instead, as is typical, the Republicans chose not to pursue the HPA in the wake of the Las Vegas shooting and we are now back to wishful thinking. I know pro-gun legislation is not the top issue for most politicians, but the Republicans squandered an opportunity to ramrod pro-gun legislation through while they controlled the presidency, house, and senate. Instead, they just caved to the cries and demands of the liberals and accomplished next to nothing. Now the Democrats are unapologetically rolling out loads of anti gun bills in the hopes that something will stick.
     
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  14. boom boom
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    boom boom Contributing Member

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    GEM, You are too young to be that cynical. :eek:
     
  15. harrygunner

    harrygunner Member

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    "Common use" is the cousin of mass rule.

    I didn't see anything in the Constitution about human rights not being protected if not commonly used.

    Apathy, government suppression, ignorance have historically lead to less common exercises of rights.

    The fact that that California judge focused on that, IMO, doesn't mean we should embrace it.
     
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  16. AlexanderA
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    AlexanderA Member

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    It's not in the Constitution. Justice Scalia used that term ("common use") in the Heller case as one of the criteria for guns that are protected under the 2nd Amendment. That's why we're focusing on it.
     
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  17. Theohazard

    Theohazard Member

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    On a side note, knowing your sheriff hasn’t been helpful since July 13th, 2016 when the law enforcement signature turned into simply a law enforcement notification. If your chief law enforcement officer doesn’t like the fact that you’re buying a silencer, he can’t do anything about it unless you’re a criminal.
     
  18. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator Staff Member

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    All too speculative. What's sufficient "common use"? What other criteria are applicable?
     
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