Tasmania Police are looking to further define what a firearm is – The Loose Canon

Federal Elections are scarcely over, and already I am hearing anti shooter rumblings about firearms law changes. Tasmania Police are looking to further define what a firearm is by the by establishing a set of ‘subjective criteria’?

Now, I would have thought that a list of criteria would be ‘objective criteria’, but those of us who enjoyed Woody Allen films before his fall from grace shall recall that ‘objectivity is subjective’ so I won’t push the issue.

Whatever one could say of Woody’s sexual preferences, he had a keen mind, which is more than I can say for most of today’s crop of Politicians.

Anyway, what this ‘’bureau babble’’ means, is that they want to create a definition like that in the US Clinton Administration’s failed assault rifle laws that would class as a schedule 1 firearm, and thus a firearm that could not be registered, any firearm that has a pistol grip, a shroud, an extended magazine or an adjustable, skeletonised or folding stock.

What makes it worse than the Clinton definition is that instead of using a series of features to form a definition, one feature will be enough to justify the banning of the firearm.

Action related to firearm cosmetics is not new, indeed the Firearms & Dangerous Weapons Act regulations 1973 in NSW precluded firearms on cosmetic grounds.

However, there are particular dangers with nominated criteria.

For example:

  • Does an adjustable comb on a stock mean that the stock is an adjustable stock?
  • Similarly do stocks that come with extension pieces that allow the length of pull to be lengthened or reduced fall foul of the test or is it only those that telescope?
  • What is a pistol grip- remember most guns other than English style straight gripped shotguns have a pistol grip of one form or another?
  • What is an ‘extension magazine’ if a rifle is sold with a factory five shot magazine and one purchases an after- market 10 shot magazine, does that constitute an ‘extension magazine’.
  • Is a ‘chassis stock’ a skeletonised stock?

Another issue, despite a ‘politicians promise’ not to do otherwise, the ban on the five round Adler shotgun, which was expected to expire on August 7 has been extended until the end of the review on the National Firearms Agreement.

All Legislation should receive proper and timely reviews, however, in the case of the National Firearms Agreement there is no proper review into its efficiency and effectiveness being undertaken.

The situation is scandalous. Shooters need to write to their MP, and to Senators in their particular states.




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