The House Is (Finally) Taking Up the Hearing Protection Act

 

Good.

Since the re-introduction of the Hearing Protection Act by Rep. Duncan and Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) in January (H.R. 367S. 59) the American Suppressor Association (ASA) has met with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) on multiple occasions to discuss technical amendments to the language. As a result, we were able to create several technical amendments that were incorporated into the current draft of the SHARE Act. These include:

Sec. 1702: Removing suppressors from the National Firearms Act, subjecting them to the same instant NICS background check as long guns, and issuing a refundable tax credit to anyone who has purchased a suppressor since the HPA’s original date of introduction.

Sec. 1703: Ensuring that suppressors will remain legal in all 42 states where they are currently legal, after suppressors are removed from the National Firearms Act.

Sec. 1704: Preempting states from levying taxes or registration requirements on suppressors. However, this will not make suppressors legal in any state where state law currently prohibits them.

Sec. 1705: Granting the ATF 365 days to destroy all suppressor related records from the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record (NFRTR).

Sec. 1706: Developing a “keystone part” definition, and requiring that such keystone part is serialized on every suppressor. This will ensure that individual suppressor parts, like pistons and endcaps, will not require serialization.

Sec. 1707: Imposing a 10% Pittman-Robertson excise tax on the manufacture of each new suppressor, a tax that is currently imposed on all Title I firearms

I myself like that bit in Sec. 1702 that talks about tax credits for NFA stamps, because when this becomes law, I’ll be getting $200 back from the Sig Sauer suppressor I bought earlier this month. The Hearing Protection Act (or HPA) is an important piece of legislation for gun owners for a number of reasons, because it’s the first step in rolling back the antiquated and oppressive measures of the 1934 National Firearms Act (or NFA). Poorly-conceived and poorly-enacted, it’s confusing morass of very technical definitions and legal loopholes.

For instance, according to the NFA, this is considered a pistol,

and this is a rifle.

Understand that? Me neither.

The Hearing Protection Act is one of those few pieces of legislation that actually does what it says it does: It will help protect the hearing of people shooting guns, and those around them as well. I wear hearing protection every time I shoot a match or go to the range, but the fact remains that if I pulled off the muffler from my car and attached it to my gun, I’d be breaking the law.

Twice.

American gun owners have been playing defense for far too long. We have yielded the high ground to gun control crowd again and again and again, and it’s time for that to end. We’re winning. Americans are still buying guns for self-protection in record numbers, and people are starting to realize that they are, and always have been, their own first responder.

The modern-day fight against gun control has been a long one. After the horror at Sandy Hook, gun owners were terrified that the Obama administration would not let that crisis go to waste. However, the murders of innocent children to impinge upon the rights of law-abiding Americas backfired on the Democrats, and no new federal gun laws of any significance were passed after that horror. The opposition threw everything they had at the right to keep and bear arms, and they came up short.

That was our Midway. Our El Alamein. They came at us, and we stopped them in their tracks.

It’s to take back some of our freedoms. It’s time for Guadalcanal. For Kasserine Pass. Rather than cower in fear and try to limit the damage to our individual rights, let’s restore the freedoms of American citizens to the God-given rights that they always have been.

If not now, when?

Published in Guns
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Members have made 7 comments.

  1. Profile photo of cirby Member

    I have two pistols with unthreaded barrels.

    Of course they’re going to pass it now.

    • #1
    • June 19, 2017 at 12:35 pm
    • Like4 likes
  2. Profile photo of Stad Thatcher

    Two comments:

    I’m all for allowing supressors simply because it means I can do more shooting in my yard (I live in the country) without having to worry about some nimrod calling 911 to say, “There’s gunfire in our neighborhood.”

    Hollywood has foisted the myth that gunfire is virtually undetectable with a silencer. The “pfut pfut” you hear in movies and on TV is fabrication (except maybe with subsonic rounds-Kevin can straighten me out on this).

    I think it’s smart to call it the “Hearing Protection Act.” Also, I like the idea of comparing a silencer to a muffler. If a loud noise is harmful, muffling it is a necessary thing to do.

    • #2
    • June 19, 2017 at 1:49 pm
    • Like4 likes
  3. Profile photo of Kevin Creighton Contributor
    Kevin Creighton Post author

    Stad (View Comment):

    Stad

    Hollywood has foisted the myth that gunfire is virtually undetectable with a silencer. The “pfut pfut” you hear in movies and on TV is fabrication (except maybe with subsonic rounds-Kevin can straighten me out on this).

    Yeah, pretty much. The CRACK of a supersonic round is plenty loud. Like you-still-need-hearing-protection-becuase-it-hurts loud.

    But with subsonic ammo? It’s just silly fun. I shot a suppressed Walther P22 awhile back with subsonic rounds, and the loudest noise was the pistol slide racking back and forth and the “thwack” of the bullet hitting the target.

    • #3
    • June 19, 2017 at 3:32 pm
    • Like2 likes
  4. Profile photo of Tex929rr Coolidge

    My only suppressed firearm is an M&P 15/22. Subsonic ammunition makes a very subdued pop but won’t cycle the action reliably; regular ammo makes a louder pop but is still quiet enough that my rural neighbors won’t hear it.

    • #4
    • June 20, 2017 at 5:51 am
    • Like1 like
  5. Profile photo of Kevin Creighton Contributor
    Kevin Creighton Post author

    The hearing for the Hearing Protection Act and SHARE Act was cancelled after the attempted massacre in Alexandria. No word on when it will be rescheduled, but I expect it to be quite soon.

    • #5
    • June 20, 2017 at 9:21 am
    • LikeLike
  6. Profile photo of Arizona Patriot Member

    Kevin, could you give us a more basic explanation of this law? I take it that suppressors (meaning silencers, right?) are legal in 42 states, but subject to very stringent federal regulations, which the Hearing Protection Act would relax.

    • #6
    • June 20, 2017 at 5:02 pm
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  7. Profile photo of Kevin Creighton Contributor
    Kevin Creighton Post author

    Arizona Patriot (View Comment):
    Kevin, could you give us a more basic explanation of this law? I take it that suppressors (meaning silencers, right?) are legal in 42 states, but subject to very stringent federal regulations, which the Hearing Protection Act would relax.

    What the Hearing Protection Act does is take a safety device (a suppressor) off of the highly restrictive and expensive National Firearms Act registry process and drops it into the same background check process used to buy guns, the good ol’ 4473.

    The process of buying a silencer (or a short-barreled rifle or shotgun) is kinda silly: It takes a long, long time to process, there is scads of paperwork involved, and it costs $200 for a tax stamp to the ATF for the right to own a muffler for your gun.

    The Hearing Protection Act would NOT remove the background check requirement for owning a silencer: You’d still need to fill out a form and get the OK from the ATF. If anything, it brings the process of buying a silencer kicking and screaming into the 21st century.

    • #7
    • June 20, 2017 at 7:24 pm
    • Like1 like