Right now, conservatives have enough political power to prevent any substantial new gun control measures at the federal level. But liberal States, especially California, have been piling on the restrictions, working toward a complete ban as their true thinly-veiled goal. Eventually, liberals might regain control of the Presidency and Congress, making gun restrictions a looming danger for preppers. And it will be so much the worse if they ever get a clear majority on the Supreme Court.
“Maybe that will never happen,” says Pollyanna Oakley, near cousin of Annie Oakley. Well, what if it does? What can we do? There are several options, some more risky than others.
1. Certain gun are less likely to be banned.
I like a nice 3-tax stamp short-barreled full-auto rifle with a silencer as much as the next firearms enthusiast. But a prudent gun plan should include at least a couple of guns less likely to be banned. A lever-action rifle is fun to shoot, useful for hunting and self-defense, and not too expensive. As these guns are manual action, not semi-auto, they are least likely to be banned. The same goes for pump shotguns and bolt-action rifles. Similarly, among hand guns, the revolver is nearly immune from gun control. Revolvers are accurate and reliable. You can’t go wrong with a .357 Magnum revolver (perhaps loaded with .38 Specials) in the biometric gun safe next to your bed.
You might think that a “compliant” AR, which meets the restrictions imposed by California or New York, would be a safe choice. But I’m pretty sure that liberal legislators will keep changing the text of the laws until anything remotely resembling an AR is as illegal to possess as nuclear weapons.
2. Some guns are harder to trace than others.
You could legally obtain an AR-15 or similar rifle, from a source that doesn’t do background checks and doesn’t keep records. The number of sources that fit this description are dwindling.
I strongly suspect that “universal background checks” is just a stepping stone toward universal gun registration. And while background check records are not supposed to be kept more than a certain number of hours, I would be shocked if the intelligence agencies are not grabbing that data and storing it permanently.
So a gun bought through a local ad or from a private seller at a gun show would not be a bad start. But for better security, you might want to delve into the area of “ghost guns”.
A ghost gun is a homemade gun, which has no serial number, and has never been subject to any type of records. In theory, the government has no way of knowing that you own such a gun. Of course, if they are looking closely at you, they might notice that you have bought many of the parts needed to make your own AR.
Ghost guns are legal to make, but not to sell, in most States. California is an exception. Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill into law requiring registration, serial numbers, and background checks on homemade guns. Effectively, then, these guns are no longer “ghost guns”.
I’m not sure about other States, and gun laws are constantly changing, so know your local laws.
The problem is that a State or the Feds may (eventually, will) entirely outlaw making or owning ghost guns. They might outlaw owning any type of semi-auto rifle. In that case, especially if they do some digging, they might conclude that you probably made a ghost gun at some point. And then they will ask you to surrender it. Bastards.
3. Hiding guns from the government is a bad idea.
I’ve read tracts from fellow preppers and gun aficionados who think they could maybe get away with hiding a gun. When the government comes for their guns, they’ll say it was lost or stolen. That won’t work with new laws criminalizing the failure to report a lost or stolen gun. And if you have a ghost gun, which has suddenly become illegal to own, hiding it is very risking. A neighbor or ex-wife or ex-mistress who is pissed at you (for no good reason, of course) could rat you out.
And most good hiding places for guns also make that gun difficult to access, should you need it. There exist specialized sealable bags or containers meant for long-term storage of rifles or hand guns. Some online commentators have suggested burying a firearm in one such container. Hard to find. Secure from the elements of nature. But also useless if someone breaks into your home. And if you get caught, it’s jail time. So I’m not a fan of this option.
4. Join the political fight.
If gun control gets really bad, I think even preppers like myself, who are not too interested in politics, should jump into the fray. Give the NRA and some of the other second amendment rights groups some money or some time. But don’t write your legislators to voice your opinion. That’s not likely to have much influence, and you might end up on some kind of list.
Then, when you vote, make sure the candidate is really and truly pro-second amendment. Some politicians will superficially endorse a position, to get the conservative vote, but with no plans to act on that position while in office.
5. Own some weapons in addition to firearms.
I have more than a passing interest in air rifles. Some of the newer models are as powerful as a .22LR rifle (on the low end of .22LR power). And they are very accurate. You can use an air rifle for hunting small game, though they are underpowered for self-defense purposes.
Edged weapons are useful for self-defense. Never bring a knife to a gun fight? Well, bring a couple of guns to a gun fight, and then also knife or two. Nothing beats a blade in close-up fighting. Especially if you know how to use it. And it would be very hard to make knives illegal.
I’m not a fan of the bow and arrow. But the modern compound bow is a fearsome weapon, capable of taking deer and killing dangerous predators, like coyote and mountain lions. If you have the interest and skill, a good bow is a useful addition to your store of weapons.
6. If gun control gets really bad, what can be done?
I don’t want to see the United States of America go the way of Australia and the U.K., banning almost all guns for almost everyone. So, I suggest fighting back by various legal means. Gun rights advocates should band together and call for protests. Disrupt the economy with strikes. Boycott companies that support gun control. Support companies that favor second amendment rights.
States that support gun rights should change their laws and State Constitutions to withstand federal gun control laws. This approach is already underway. Some States have asserted that guns made and possessed in-State are not subject to federal law. These are called Nullification Laws. They nullify federal restrictions on guns within the State.
7. Worst case scenario, we push for a Constitutional Convention.
Conservatives have a majority of States, if not a majority of voters nationwide. We have enough States to push for a revision of the Constitution to make all of our rights so clear that no Court can disingenuously interpret our rights away.
Will it ever get that bad? Maybe. Eventually.