The head of the ATF, Steven Dettelbach this week openly called for a new ban on so called "assault weapons". However during his confirmation hearing he admitted he didn't even know how to define them. I wonder if we could now see a new "rule".
Hey everybody, how's it going? Welcome back to Copper Jacket TV. So, how do you ban something that doesn't exist? Well, I'm not sure, but that's what the ATF director, Steven Debach, would like to do. He's calling for a so-called assault weapons ban but doesn't even know what one is.
Mr. Debach, in your 2018 campaign for attorney general, you called for a ban on so-called assault weapons. What is an assault weapon? Could you define it for me?
Senator: I, uh, when I was a candidate for office, I did talk about restrictions on assault weapons. I did not define the term, and I haven't gone through the process of defining that term.
Okay, so let's go and talk about what's going on here. Again, Steven Deach, the head of the ATF, the same agency that's recently created multiple rules infringing on our constitutional rights, has decided to call for a so-called assault weapons ban. During his confirmation hearing, he didn't even know what one was. He mentioned relying on experts at the agency and using whatever definition Congress came up with.
Let's take a look at the exchange between him and Senator Josh Hawley. Why is it so hard to define assault weapons?
Director Debach: Well, I think, Senator, what I told you, which is that you don't want it to be so narrow as to be meaningless and you don't want it to be so broad as to infringe on the rights of law-abiding Americans unnecessarily. Congress took an effort at that definition in 1994.
Senator: What did you think of that definition that Congress used?
Director Debach: I don't know enough about that part. That's a definition I'm not particularly familiar with, and I haven't studied the data on how on that particular definition. I've heard comments on both sides of that, Senator. I acknowledge that's a very difficult issue. Is it because there's really not a category of weapons known as assault weapons? I mean, there are rifles, shotguns, pistols. Can you go into a federally licensed firearm dealer and find the category of weapons labeled on the wall as assault weapons?
Director Debach: I don't believe that's a category of weapons that's labeled on the wall of retailers. It's not necessarily what retailers call it that would affect the decision of a legislative body.
So, Josh Hawley pretty much nailed it. There's no definition because they don't exist. It is a name that people in Washington gave them to make them seem scarier than they actually are. The fact that Debach doesn't even know what the 94 ban was about is telling.
He's now calling for an assault weapons ban, saying it's the job of Congress to define assault weapons. However, he contradicts himself by admitting there is no definition, and Congress hasn't created one yet. He's essentially calling for a ban on something that doesn't exist.
This is concerning because if they can make it seem like a legitimate category, they can create a definition and ban whatever they want. The ATF, instead of just enforcing existing laws, is creating new rules and definitions. It's something to keep an eye on as the more support they gain, the more meaning the term "assault weapons" may end up having.
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