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The ATF’s proposed restrictions on shotgun imports call for a ban anything that is not, in their opinion, an appropriate firearm for “traditional sports of hunting, trap and skeet target shooting.” Events hosted by USPSA, IDPA and 3-Gun groups were not considered “sporting purposes.” And here’s why: including these events would alter past rulings and allow previously banned shotguns. We’re torquing the USAS-12, Striker 12 and Street Sweeper. This despite the fact that on page 7 of their study the ATF recognizes that the definition of “sporting purposes” changes over time and new sports “may become ‘generally recognized’ as such.”

If “gun culture 2.0” is focused on “run-and-gun” sports, concealed carry and replicating the firearms and targets from military scenarios, would it not make sense that the new definition of “sporting purposes” include these activities and competitions?

The ATF knows that if 3-Gun tournaments are considered “sporting purposes,” the ramifications would extend to rifles and pistols as well as shotguns, which would allow for almost any type of firearm to be imported. For this reason they have always discounted plinking as a sporting activity since in their words “almost any firearm can be used in that activity.”

You might want to reinforce that notion. If so, click here for’s “commenting on the shotgun ban for dummies” post. Meanwhile, the National Shooting Sports Foundation is on their case. Here’s today’s press release:

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) is currently reviewing the recently released study by ATF on the importability of shotguns. NSSF will be submitting comments to ATF by the May 1, 2011 deadline.  NSSF’s initial reaction to the study is that if the shooting public deems a certain activity to be “sporting” through participation, even if that sport is new and seems unconventional to the uninitiated, NSSF does not believe the federal government should say that the firearms law abiding citizens use to participate in that shooting sport activity are neither “particularly suitable for nor readily adaptable to generally recognized sporting purposes” pursuant to the Gun Control Act of 1968.  Many new sport shooting disciplines have arisen since 1968 and have enjoyed significant participation.  The federal government ought not to be making subjective decisions about what lawful shooting activities it considers a sport.

The safe and responsible participation in new and evolving sporting events does not result in injury.  The possession of firearms in the hands of law abiding Americans for any lawful purpose, including but not limited to sports shooting, does not cause crime.

The Supreme Court’s decisions in Heller and McDonald make clear that the exercise of the fundamental individual right to keep and bear arms for self defense protected by the Second Amendment does not hinge on whether one will use the firearm to participate in an activity the government deems to be sufficiently sporting. The shotguns this study would ban from importation are also suitable for self protection including home defense.

NSSF believes the time has come for Congress to re-examine the so-called “sporting purpose” test as a criteria for importing a firearm into the United States.

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  1. The shotgun matches in the practical shooting category always seem safer to me than sporting clays shotgunning. Every time I shoot clays, I must get muzzled a hundred times by some idiot while they are waiting their turn. Contrast that to the multi-gun matches where firearm handling for the shotguns is the same as for pistols: unless you are on the line, you don’t touch the gun.

  2. The ATF as many other government offices ussually are filled with political wanna be’s and hypocrites. The government needs to employ sportsmen and firearms enthusiasts so they can better judge what is or isn’t. In short hire the people that know about a thing so they can better make determinations, ( sorry that would make sense) and we’re talking about the government.

  3. We get the government that we tolerate. Log the comments against the study. NRA and NSSF are certainly right about needing to amend the law but remember that Congress gave this power to the executive branch back in ’68. Getting them to take it back won’t be as easy as everyone thinks. It took almost 6 years to overturn the gun ban in National Parks. Let’s make a strong showing on this so we can get other efforts rolling.

  4. This is obscene. Someone needs to go to court to challenge the “sporting purpose” clause tacked onto every decision the ATF makes. I’m sure the Heller Foundation has this on their radar, but it’s hard to wait. I’m sure they’ll have some importers try to import some “non-sporting” weapons, get denied, giving them standing.

    I can’t believe in a free republic we have to tread this lightly. Its crap like this that makes Barney Frank’s statement that the law doesn’t need constitutional justification, and if there’s anything constitutionally wrong we have the courts, so treasonous. Passing a law that’s unconstitutional is ok, because the people will have the time, money, and standing to correct any wrongs the congress may have made in ignorance. Oh wait.

  5. This nonsense will continue until the laws surrounding the excise (privilege) tax imposed upon the manufacture of arms and ammo are properly challenged. All gun control is based upon the insertion of this government privilege upon property that Americans have an unalienable (gov’t can’t modify, alter, or abolish) right to acquire, possess, carry and use for lawful puposes.

    For information on the limits of federal jurisdiction regarding firearms see:

  6. Hello I am one of the fathers that wrote the constitution of the United States. When we all agreed to enter in the 2nd Ammendmant “The right to bear arms”. We were not putting that in for sporting or hunting.Infact we were putting it in for the exact reason your BATF is doing to you American right now! I like how when people say “oh back then they didnt know there would be machine guns and arms of today”. But the fact is the muzzle loader of my era was your machine gun and arms of today. Civilians and the military both had the same arms, and we still put it in the Consitution.The Govt you have today that is trying to take away from you is a Govt that we broke off from,major reason why the 2nd is in there..we ment the right to bear any arm you choose.even ones the military has, so if need you will have a fair chance.

  7. The second amendment was placed into the U.S. Constitution specifically to ensure the population would have the means to overthrow a tyrannical government…PERIOD!

    In order for a population to effectively fight against a government gone astray, that population MUST be able to acquire and keep adequate arms. There can be no limits imposed….none!

    It is not what objects a person has that causes any kind of problem but rather what the person does with those objects…for that, we already have more than adequate laws….murder, robbery, assault, rape, negligence leading to harm, etc… are all illegal and punishable by various sentences…no other laws needed.

    As for the self defense thing…every living being, that includes HUMANS, has the God given right to self defense. That right implies that we humans also have the ABSOLUTE right to keep, bear, and use, the means to effect that self defense…no exceptions other than when a person is locked up and the STATE has taken on the TOTAL responsibility of providing 24/7 protection.

    Hunting and sporting events are total side issues.

  8. hey atf, guns in america arent for sporting use. its for our right to overthrow you and your buddies in the white house if you step out of line, which by now the lazy people of america should already be in obama’s office everyone with gun in hand, telling him to read the constitution. what part of SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED dont you dipshits not understand??? try reading your countries constitution for once before you try to change a way of life for people. ( sporting, hunting, trap, home defense, food, survival and keeping the politicians in check) for me, guns are a huge part of my life. try and take em. you wont get them. i can promise you that you commi’s

  9. You can only poke a sleeping dog so many times before he wakes up. Angry.
    The ATF and our wayward government doesn’t understand just how big of a mistake they are making or how much they underestimate the reaction they will get.

  10. Third Amendment:
    No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

    Got that?

    “without the consent of the Owner”

    If an armed militia soldier holds a family member who went for a walk outside the house hostage, that’s duress, not consent.


    Second Amendment:
    A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

    I’m not seeing sports here …

    I do not hunt and kill animals for sport
    I do not compete in shooting events competitions
    I don’t watch sports on TV, and have no interest in sports.
    I have a gun to defend myself and my family
    Who cares if a self-defense tool can also be used in a sport or not?
    Second Amendment as it relates to third Amendment is about consent and being forced under duress to do something by a government’s militia.
    If a person’s family member was held captive by the militia, your consent wouldn’t be genuine.
    So, it’s about a person’s right to protect themselves and family wherever they go, not just inside the home.

    What the heck has that got to do with sports?
    In other words, infringing upon “shall not be infringed” by bringing up what kind of ball they use in football versus tennis really is a joke.


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