The fight for 3D printed firearms is a fight for multiple constitutional rights.
Activist judges have stepped in and shut down DEFCAD, a website providing downloads for 3D printed gun models. This is a violation of the 1st, 2nd, and 9th Amendments of the constitution. Many government officials have violated their oaths to uphold the constitution and filed a lawsuit against Defense Distributed for distributing these files, even though these files are readily available all over the internet.
It is beyond infuriating to have to write a follow up post this close after a 2nd Amendment win, particularly 3D printed gun plans hitting the web the other day. But the anti-gun movement will never stop, and this time they have another fearmongering, meaningless, do-nothing campaign.
3D printing is a growing and (relatively) new way of manufacturing products. 3D printing is really growing and maturing, in the ways you can print objects, the durability of the end products, and in the skills of product designers. These days, affordable 3D printers and an abundance of information online about 3D printing means anyone can buy a printer and make things in their own home. This reality scares anti-gunners since anyone can make a gun in their own home, except, people have always been able to make guns in their own home – both from a capability standpoint and a legality standpoint.
Homemade guns have always been legal and around
There’s nothing illegal about making a gun in your own home. It is perfectly legal for anyone to manufacture a gun in their own home. What becomes illegal is when you sell that homemade gun to someone else.
Setting aside from the legality of homemade guns, it isn’t even hard to make one. Laws won’t stop criminals from manufacturing their own homemade weapons, be they gun, shiv, or bomb if we want to expand the scope of our discussion a little bit. A rudimentary shotgun can be made out of a metal pipe and a nail. More reliable firearms, such as AR-15s and Glocks can be made from what are called 80% build kits. This guy made a functioning AR-15 using old beer cans.
If someone wants to make a gun, they can, and will. Firearms are simple mechanical devices and can be made by any semi-competent machinist.
3D Printing is just a new way of making firearms, not even very good firearms with current 3D Printing technology.
Declaring information illegal is a totalitarian government move
Knowledge is a key component of freedom. The ability to share, discuss, and know whatever we want is what makes us free. Free men and women are not told what they can and cannot learn and share, that is why we have the 1st Amendment.
“Learning information or learning about how things work should not be an illegal act. Unless we’re wanting to move into a dark age. If we really want to call information dangerous, where does that stop?” –Karl, from InRangeTV
This means free speech protects the good and the bad, that is one of the dangers of freedom. Unfortunately, there is only one alternative to this danger. Giving the government complete control to tell us what we can and cannot talk about. One only needs to look at history for a few minutes to know that never works out in favor of the people.
Information on how to make firearms already exists on the internet
Knowledge about how to make a gun isn’t illegal, not even when it comes to regulated items such as machine guns or suppressors. Spend some time on the search engines and there are articles, diagrams, and videos all over the place on how firearms work, how to build them, and how to maintain them. Knowledge isn’t illegal, and knowledge about regulated firearms isn’t illegal.
Firearms are simple mechanical devices. They combine basic features used in all sorts of mechanical devices, large and small. You couldn’t ban the knowledge of firearms without banning the knowledge of basic engineering.
When it comes to 3D printed firearms, we’re combining basic knowledge of 3D printing and basic mechanical knowledge. There’s nothing illegal about any of it. It is unconstitutional and un-American to ban information, and it is tyrannical for the government to tell us what we can and cannot say.
Declaring that information illegal doesn’t stop it from spreading
Ever heard of the Streisand effect? That’s exactly what’s going on. The information is out there. 3D printed firearms are here to stay, and they were never going to be stopped. Even though a judge ordered Defense Distributed to take their gun files offline, those files are easily found all over the web in multiple places.
The government couldn’t stop this information if they tried. The harder they try to fight against 3D printed guns, the more they will spread.
This isn’t about homemade guns, this is about controlling information
Homemade guns have always been around and have always been legal.
Information about how to make guns has always been around and always has been legal.
This isn’t a fight against homemade guns, it isn’t a fight against guns, it isn’t a fight against terrorists. This is a fight for control. When the government gets the power to control what information we are allowed to know, they will be able to control so much more about our lives. Unfortunately this isn’t conspiracy theory stuff, this is a simple reality.
If the government can tell us that simple basic mechanical knowledge is illegal, there will be nothing they couldn’t declare illegal.
Join the fight.
Join Defense Distributed and help fight against this power grab, this assault on the 1st, 2nd and 9th Amendments. I have donated, you should too.