Homemade guns set a terrible precedent



August 1, 2018 - 10:27 AM

Tuesday evening a federal judge issued a last-minute ruling forbidding today’s planned release of online instructions for how to make guns at home with a 3-D printer.
The heavy-duty plastic gun — the “Liberator” — is the brainchild of Cody Wilson, a self-described anarchist from Texas.
Wilson first devised the plastic gun in 2012, prompting Wired magazine, a technology-based publication, to list him as one of the 15 most dangerous people in the world, along with Islamist terrorists.
For five years running, the Obama administration prevented Wilson from making the plans readily available, saying it would violate arms trafficking regulations. In June, the Trump administration not only gave Wilson the go-ahead to release the files online, but reimbursed him $40,000 for his  legal fees.
On Tuesday, however, President Trump was given pause by the decision, tweeting, “I am looking into 3-D Plastic Guns being sold to the public. Already spoke to NRA, doesn’t seem to make much sense!”
Why Mr. Trump consulted the NRA, and not federal law enforcement authorities, says all we need to know about how tightly he is in their grip.
On Monday, nine states, not including Kansas, sadly, asked for a restraining order to stop Wilson’s organization, Defense Distributed, from posting the files online.
Authorities say the guns are extremely dangerous because metal detectors cannot detect them, they do not contain serial numbers so they can’t be traced to their owners, and they can be produced by anybody, regardless of their age, mental health status or criminal history.
Wilson said he also intends to produce blueprints for rifles and pistols with the goal of getting as many guns into as many hands as possible.
According to news reports, Wilson posted the do-it-yourself plans for the Liberator on Friday, with more than 1,000 copies having been downloaded over the weekend.
If the plans are allowed to be made public this becomes not only a national problem, but one for the entire world.
Where we go from here is anyone’s guess. But it doesn’t feel safe.
Clearly, Congress needs to enact laws that ban the production of armaments in the privacy of one’s home.
There’s no time to lose.
— Susan Lynn

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