From gun kits to 3D printable guns, a short history of rogue gun makers

beSpacific 2018-08-02

Prof. Timothy D. Lytton: “Gun rights activist Cody Wilson got a green light from the Trump administration in June to publish digital blueprints on the internet that will enable anyone with a 3D printer to make a plastic gun. A federal judge blocked distribution of those blueprints. But thousands of people have already downloaded them. Designs include handguns and semi-automatic assault-style weapons. Federal background check laws applicable to the physical sale of firearms do not apply to the electronic posting of digital blueprints, and state restrictions on assault weapons will be impossible to enforce for any weapons made from Wilson’s designs because there will be no production or sales records. Wilson’s harnessing of computer technology and his self-proclaimed radical ideology have added a new, unpredictable dimension to America’s struggle to reduce gun violence. But my research into the marketing, distribution and sales practices of the U.S. firearms industry reveals that there is nothing new in attempts by gun makers to exploit loopholes in government regulations…”