Parting Shots: Putting the ATF’s Failed M855 Ammo Ban in Perspective

Size comparison of various firearms. The AR-15 "pistol" at position "d" and immediately below. Photo credit:

Size comparison of various firearms. The AR-15 “pistol” at position “d” and immediately below. Photo credit:

Yesterday, I was working on a post to remind everyone to submit comments opposing the ATF’s “Framework Proposal”(aka M855 ammunition ban) when news hit that the agency was abandoning the move for the time being. While I was excited to hear this, it was not all that surprising. In a whopping 80,000 comments that had already been submitted, the ATF recognized that shooters had serious and legitimate concerns about the proposal and moving forward with it almost certainly meant that the agency would soon be embroiled in a number of expensive lawsuits.

Even with this “victory”, I still feel compelled to take one last swipe at the ATF and their proposal. You may remember that the framework document touted the dangers of “concealable” AR-15 pistols that could fire rifle rounds like the M855 5.56mm cartridge. Just so everyone is on the same page, the “concealable” firearm that the ATF references can be found in position “d” and directly below that in the above image. Examples “a” and “b” are SIG and Glock handguns respectively and these are typically what is considered “concealable”. The Heckler & Koch USP in position “c” is usually regarded as too large to comfortably conceal without “printing”. Position “e” shows a regular AR-15 rifle with a 16″ barrel. The AR-15 in “d” has a 7.5″ barrel whereas the one below it sports a 10.5″ tube. This makes them 23″ and 26″ respectively. As such, both are far larger than even the biggest laptops in the market and their overall footprints with magazines and sights are closer to a small flat-screen television.

Let’s be honest, could anyone short of Fat Bastard (funny film BTW) reasonably hide one of these in their pants or shirt? Methinks not.


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