November 13, 2003

Build Your Own Machinegun

No, I'm not joking. The US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has just ruled (pdf link) that a homemade machinegun is not within the power of the federal government to regulate as the laws regarding this were always constructed under the commerce clause and in this particular case (United States v Stewart) there was no actual commerce but a true homemade creation.

Thanks to Eugene Volokh of the Volokh Conspiracy for pointing this out.

The implications are both liberating and frightening. Liberating because it sets the groundwork for technological progress in home manufacturing to remain legal even after the politicians figure out that this turns us all into potential armorers. It's frightening for the exact same reason.

Posted by TMLutas at November 13, 2003 05:04 PM