Recently, the anti-gun legislature in California passed a laundry list of firearms restrictions that will turn law-abiding citizens into instant criminals. One of those restrictions requires “bullet button” equipped rifles, such as the AR15, to be registered as “assault weapons.” The registration scheme accomplishes several things for the State. First, it informs the State that you have the rifle. This is something the State may not already know. Second, it restricts what you can do with that rifle and opens up the possibility of further restrictions down the road. Third, it creates a database of rifles and rifle owners that can be used in the future to confiscate those rifles. It’s very difficult for government thugs to confiscate something if they don’t know who has it and where it is. Fourth, it brings the State money in the form of fees.
With that bit of background in place, it should come as no surprise that hardly a day goes by without somebody asking me this question, “Should I register my AR15?” Well… right out of the gate, my simple one word answer is, NO! There is no compelling reason for a government to register firearms except as a necessary step toward confiscating them. We have seen this same progression in other countries, such as Australia and England. There is no reason to believe that anti-gun government officials will act any differently here in the United States. If they know you have it, they will do whatever they can to deprive you of it.
Now that I’ve cleared the air on that, I’ll explain the other reasons why I do not plan to register my AR15. Right away, I have to acknowledge that the government already knows I own an AR15, regardless of whether I choose to register it. I’m the host of an internet show and I’ve produced videos using my rifle. I’ve also admitted to owning the rifle on this blog. So, why not just register it? After all, the government already knows that I have it. If they don’t, they could easily figure it out. Even so, I actually have some good reasons for not registering my rifle. Here they are:
- There are currently legal ways to avoid having to register the rifle. Among them are: move the rifle out of the state of California; and alter the rifle so as to render it “featureless” under California law. It is my understanding that a “featureless” rifle is not considered an assault weapon in California and does not need to be registered. It also doesn’t require a “bullet button.” All I have to do to render the rifle “featureless” is replace the collapsible stock with a straight one, replace the flash hider with a muzzle break, and install a “fin” on the grip. It won’t look as cool, but it will work just as well. Once the rifle is “featureless” I can also install a regular magazine release and ditch the bullet button. That’s an added bonus.
- Once the rifle is registered, California will place additional restrictions upon it. For example: I will no longer be able to sell the rifle, give it to a family member or will it to my children or grandchildren in the State of California.
- If I choose to move the rifle out of California at some later date, I don’t want to be grilled by California gun Nazis who want to know where I took it.
- Likewise, if the federal government should regulate AR15s at some point in the future, I would prefer that California be unable to provide the federal government with a database that includes my name and the particulars of my rifle.
- I don’t want to pay the fee. California already taxes and fees me to death. I prefer not to pay any more fees than I already do.
While I cannot and will not recommend that anyone break the law, I am firmly of the belief that the government has no need to know what firearms are owned by honest citizens. I also object to the practice of legislators passing restrictive laws from which they themselves are exempt. Only tyrants do such things. Therefore, as long as there are legal alternatives to registration, I will urge people to seek those alternatives. Which brings me back to my one word answer expressed above. Should you register your AR15? NO!