On Oct. 22, the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) announced its support for the Hearing Protection Act (H.R. 3799). Sponsored by Congressman Matt Salmon (AZ-05), it removes suppressors from the regulations established under the National Firearms Act of 1934.
“Suppressors significantly reduce the chance of hearing loss for anyone who enjoys the shooting sports,” said NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris Cox. “On behalf of the NRA and our 5 million members, I want to thank Rep. Salmon for his leadership on this important bill.”
Current regulations require buyers to send an application to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE), pay a $200 tax, and pass an arduously time consuming BATFE background check. Under Salmon’s bill there would be no application or tax. Buyers would continue to be required to pass a National Criminal Instant Background Check (NICS) as law-abiding gun owners.
As the popularity of suppressors increases, 37 if the 41 states that currently permit their ownership have legalized them for hunting. As in the case of other devices designed to muffle sound, firearm suppressors help to prevent hearing loss and noise pollution. Hunters and shooters can benefit whether they’re sighting in a rifle on the range or hunting from their treestand or blind.
“Suppressors benefit all involved in hunting and the shooting sports,” adds Cox. “It’s time to bring the law in line with modern technology.”
For a fast fact on suppressors, anyone not familiar with them may be surprised to learn they have been in existence for more than 100 years. In fact, back in the day U.S. President and NRA President Teddy Roosevelt is said to have used one on his Winchester Model 94 at his Long Island home in New York to keep from disturbing his neighbors while dispatching varmints.
For more information, the American Suppressor Association has provided valuable insight into the creation of the Hearing Protection Act.