The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

13 September 2004

Not with a bang

This note showed up on the Web site of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives:

Semiautomatic Assault Weapon Update

By statute, the prohibitions relating to semiautomatic assault weapons and large capacity ammunition feeding devices expired on September 13, 2004. As a result, certain sections of the Gun Control Act, 18 U.S.C. Chapter 44, and its implementing regulations, 27 CFR Part 478, are no longer in effect.

This page explains matters further.

Do I feel any safer? Not especially. On the other hand, I'd just like to say that I really, really like the idea of Federal laws that actually expire.

Posted at 12:03 AM to Political Science Fiction


Why don't all laws come with an expiration date? I doubt the Republican congress would have the guts to repeal this law. As someone who prefers less laws (regardless of my feelings on the law in question), I think this provides a good template and counterbalance to political cowardice.

Posted by: R. Alex at 12:28 AM on 13 September 2004

The best expiration clause would be, "This law shall be repealed automatically the instant a member of Congress rationalizes why he or she should not have to abide by it."

That way, most laws would be in effect for a negative amount of time.

Posted by: McGehee at 2:04 PM on 13 September 2004

So what happens if you try to use a law past it's expiration date?

Terkish Payne, I don't want to risk a tummy ache or anything..

Posted by: Terkish Payne at 3:30 PM on 13 September 2004

"Use an expired law, go to jail."

That would be the only law not allowed to expire.

Posted by: McGehee at 8:44 PM on 13 September 2004

But if it's expired, how can you go to jail for it? or something.. I don't know, maybe drinking the whole bottle of cough syrup wasn't such a good idea before reading Chucky's site.

Terkish Payne, Big N, little Y, great big f-ing Q.

Posted by: Terkish Payne at 8:14 AM on 14 September 2004