ATF Redefines 40-Year-Old Law on Gun Transfers!

This is a discussion on ATF Redefines 40-Year-Old Law on Gun Transfers! within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Here we go....AFT at it finest! This does not bode well....... ATF Redefines 40-Year-Old Law on Gun Transfers Opinion by National Shooting Sports Foundation (20 ...

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Thread: ATF Redefines 40-Year-Old Law on Gun Transfers!

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    ATF Redefines 40-Year-Old Law on Gun Transfers!

    Here we go....AFT at it finest! This does not bode well.......

    ATF Redefines 40-Year-Old Law on Gun Transfers
    Opinion by National Shooting Sports Foundation
    (20 Hours Ago) in Society / Guns

    Reversing an interpretation of the Gun Control Act that has been on the books for more than four decades, ATF today posted a ruling declaring any shipment of a firearm by a manufacturer (FFL) to any agent or business (e.g., an engineering-design firm, patent lawyer, testing lab, gun writer, etc.) for a bona fide business purpose to be a "transfer" under the Gun Control Act of 1968. As a consequence, legitimate business-related shipments will now require the recipient to complete a Form 4473 and undergo a Brady criminal background check. In many instances, these requirements will force shipments to a third party, thereby lengthening the process and the time that the firearm is in transit.

    ATF officials have acknowledged this is a radical change from ATF’s long-standing interpretation that this was not a "transfer" under the Gun Control Act that was set forth in a 1969 ruling ("Shipment or Delivery of Firearms By Licensees to Employees, Agents, Representatives, Writers and Evaluators.") and further clarified in a 1972 ruling. In other words, ATF is now saying its long-standing rulings, issued shortly after the Gun Control Act was enacted, were wrong. ATF should be required to explain why it took 42 years to decide that its original understanding and interpretation of the Gun Control Act is now somehow wrong. ATF appears to be under the mistaken impression that the Brady Act of 1993 changed what constitutes a "transfer" under the Gun Control Act. Even if this were true - and it is not -- then ATF should be required to explain why it took 17 years to figure this out. ATF itself admits that neither the Gun Control Act nor the Brady Act defines "transfer." There is simply nothing in the Brady Act or is there any other legal reason that compels ATF to now reject 40 years of precedent.

    For more than four decades manufacturers have shipped firearms to agents for bona fide business purposes. ATF is unable to identify a single instance during the past 40 years where a single firearm shipped in reliance upon ATF's rulings was used in a crime. This unwarranted reinterpretation of the law will cause significant disruption and additional costs for industry members and increase the cost of doing business, while doing nothing to advance public safety.
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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    Yet another symptom of the ATF becoming a law unto themselves.
    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    There's a reason ATF was never even on my radar when I started looking for Federal LEO positions...
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    Member Array muzzleloader's Avatar
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    Am I missing something? Does ATF have any authority to interpret any law?

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    a little more info:
    Why did ATF suddenly redefine firearm transfers?


    Courtesy Oleg Volk, A Human Right

    "ATF Reverses Interpretation of GCA; Redefines 'Transfers' of Firearms," reads the May 27 post on the National Shooting Sports Foundation's NSSF Blog.

    Reversing an interpretation of the Gun Control Act that has been on the books for more than four decades, ATF today posted a ruling declaring any shipment of a firearm by a manufacturer (FFL) to any agent or business (e.g., an engineering-design firm, patent lawyer, testing lab, gun writer, etc.) for a bona fide business purpose to be a "transfer" under the Gun Control Act of 1968.

    As NSSF observes:

    In many instances, these requirements will force shipments to a third party, thereby lengthening the process and the time that the firearm is in transit.

    The thing is, ATF has been operating under a completely different interpretation without incident:

    There is simply nothing in the Brady Act or is there any other legal reason that compels ATF to now reject 40 years of precedent...

    ATF is unable to identify a single instance during the past 40 years where a single firearm shipped in reliance upon ATF's rulings was used in a crime.

    Here's the May 20 ruling, issued under "authority" of Deputy Director Kenneth E. Melson:

    Atf Ruling 2010 1 | Scribd


    It seems to me strict interpretation of this clause could cause problems not just for shipping firearms to contractors or evaluators, but also within a store:

    Temporary firearms assignments to employees are different from temporary firearms assignments to non-employee contractors, agents, and representatives because the FFL exerts a higher level of control over its employees than its contractors or agents.

    Would that not eliminate the ability of a store to retain staff via a temporary agency?

    And here are a couple sections that stand out for me:

    Neither the GCA nor its implementing regulations define the term “transfer"..A “transfer” includes any change in dominion or control of a firearm, whether temporary or permanent, commercial or noncommercial.

    and

    [T]he temporary assignment of a firearm by an FFL to its unlicensed agents, contractors, volunteers, or any other person who is not an employee of the FFL, even for bona fide business purposes, is a transfer or disposition for purposes of the Gun Control Act, as amended, and, accordingly, the FFL must contact NICS for a background check, record a disposition entry, and complete an ATF Form 4473. [Emphasis added-DC]

    I know the perceived intent here involves shipping guns to contractors, evaluators and the like, but if I just read these words on their own as written, I can see it being interpreted that such transfers could even include renting guns at shooting ranges. I find the timing curious, because the antis have recently begun referring to this as a "federal loophole" and using anecdotes to stir up the hysteria to close it.

    It's not like we haven't seen arbitrary rulings and reversals before. Can anyone say for certain they know how ATF will treat past accepted practices under this new ruling, and if the interpretation will be the same a week, a month, a year from now...?

    And what concerns should we have that bureau rulings are issued by administrative edict under signature of an unelected acting official, without opportunity for public comment and apparently outside the scope of Federal Register rule development protocols and protections?

    How did Clinton aide Paul Begala put it?

    Stroke of the pen, law of the land. Kinda cool!
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. If I have a gun, what do I have to be paranoid about?" -Clint Smith

    "An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." -Jeff Cooper

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    Ex Member Array azchevy's Avatar
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    The ATF needs to be dissolved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by muzzleloader View Post
    Am I missing something? Does ATF have any authority to interpret any law?
    no...they just do whatever the heck they want and change the rules along the way to meet whatever "criteria" they pull out of their on any given day
    "My God David, We're a Civilized society."

    "Sure, As long as the machines are workin' and you can call 911. But you take those things away, you throw people in the dark, and you scare the crap out of them; no more rules...You'll see how primitive they can get."
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    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    They can't write new law, that is the job of congress, but they do seem to have a very large amount of leeway in deciding what the law means, and making it retroactive.
    Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zacii View Post
    Yet another symptom of the ATF becoming a law unto themselves.
    "Becoming?" Their agents have acted like it for many long years.

    The Constitution authorizes Congress to make law, not bureaucrat fiefdoms such as the BATFE. Try telling a BATFE "agent" that, and see how far it gets you. And yet, a ruling by BATFE is effectively every bit a law, as evidenced by the cuff-and-stuff at the point of a gun and related imprisonment if you screw up following their dictates.
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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccw9mm View Post
    "Becoming?" Their agents have acted like it for many long years.

    The Constitution authorizes Congress to make law, not bureaucrat fiefdoms such as the BATFE. Try telling a BATFE "agent" that, and see how far it gets you. And yet, a ruling by BATFE is effectively every bit a law, as evidenced by the cuff-and-stuff at the point of a gun and related imprisonment if you screw up following their dictates.
    +1. I stand corrected. They get away with murder.
    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccw9mm View Post
    "Becoming?" Their agents have acted like it for many long years.

    The Constitution authorizes Congress to make law, not bureaucrat fiefdoms such as the BATFE. Try telling a BATFE "agent" that, and see how far it gets you. And yet, a ruling by BATFE is effectively every bit a law, as evidenced by the cuff-and-stuff at the point of a gun and related imprisonment if you screw up following their dictates.
    But.....but....it is for the CHILDREN!
    Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.

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    VIP Member Array automatic slim's Avatar
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    I believe this is refered to as "change you can believe in".
    "First gallant South Carolina nobly made the stand."
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    Write to your Senators & Reps...again.

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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    What's ATF stand for?

    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    It is an attempt by the present administration to placate Ms Brady and her blissninnies.

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