State Senate Passes Bump Stock Ban, GOP Warns of Slippery Slope
By a vote of 29-20, the Washington state Senate passed a bill that come July, will outlaw the sale, purchase or ownership of what are called 'bump stocks.'
These are modifications that allow a semi-automatic weapon, such as an AR-15, to achieve a high rate of fire, but not as fast as a truly automatic weapon. Democratic Senators claim these modifications have been used in a number of crimes around the nation including the Vegas shooting. However, authorities still have not proven or found evidence such a modified weapon was actually used in the Vegas incident.
An automatic weapon does not require an individual pull of the trigger each time you want to fire.
Senator Mark Schoessler of Ritzville, who voted against the bill says it's a "slippery slope," and the first step towards confiscation. The ban will go into effect in July of this year, and one year from then in 2019, it becomes a felony to possess one or have it on a weapon. Schoessler says a felon cannot have a gun, and if you don't surrender it, you lose your gun rights--even without a criminal record.
Democrats were celebrating the victory, but critics say it's another step towards what appears to be a goal of taking guns out of the hands of citizens in the state of Washington.
Democrats have introduced numerous bills over the years in attempts to limit, remove or curtail gun rights of citizens in Washington state.
Critics of such bills say banning weapons, modifying laws and taking guns from people will not stop disturbed people who are bent on causing harm to others. They say more resources need to be put into mental health programs, detection and law enforcement rather than taking guns out of normal responsible citizens' hands.