In a move that immediately drew the ire of gun owners and Second Amendment advocates alike, President Joe Biden on Monday announced, according to Reuters, a new rule designed to curtail access to privately made, often untraceable firearms.
As Fox News noted, the Biden administration unveiled a rule that would reclassify gun assembly kits as firearms pursuant to the Gun Control Act. As such, their manufacturers would need to be licensed, and the would be compelled to add serial numbers to the kits themselves.
In addition, those selling gun kits in a commercial setting would be responsible for conducting background checks on prospective purchasers, according to the outlet.
These so-called “ghost guns” have historically lacked serial numbers, and thus prove difficult, if not impossible, for law enforcement officers to trace when they are used in the commission of crimes, with Biden himself declaring during a Rose Garden event detailing the initiative, “These guns are weapons of choice for many criminals.”
Biden’s “ghost-gun” crackdown is a smaller part of a broader attempt by the White House and the Justice Department to address growing concerns over gun violence and to thwart mass shooting incidents of the sort that inevitably spark calls from the left for new gun control measures.
In anticipation of Monday’s announcement, New York Sen. Chuck Schumer (D) declared, according to The Hill, “It’s high time for a ghost gun exorcism before the proliferation peaks, and before more people get hurt – or worse. My message is a simple one: No more waiting on these proposed federal rules,” adding that these types of weapons are “too easy to build, too hard to trace and too dangerous to ignore.”
Those who champion the rights of gun owners, on the other hand, were far less enthusiastic about Biden’s announcement, with the National Rifle Association (NRA) leading the way in criticizing the move.
“An administration that’s truly sincere and resolute about curbing violent crime rates would do one thing: take violent criminals off the streets immediately,” opined Andrew Arulandandam, NRA public affairs director. “Yet, the Biden administration allows these criminals who kill and maim with callous and reckless abandon, again and again, to roam the streets of Baltimore, Philadelphia, Chicago, New York, San Francisco and other cities large and small across our country without fear of punishment.”
Perhaps setting the stage for future legal battles over Biden’s controversial gun gambit, Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) tweeted on behalf of Second Amendment defenders on Sunday, saying, “The Constitution does not authorize the federal government to prevent you from making your own firearm. This is a fact that has been recognized for 200+ years.”