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Brace Yourself: ATF’s Proposed New Rule May Make You a Felon




When they outlaw stabilizing braces, of course only outlaws will have them.

Today, the Second Amendment Foundation has an urgent message for American gun owners and Second Amendment supporters. As you may already know, the ATF has proposed a rule change that would treat pistol stabilizing arm braces–an aftermarket gun modification designed to assist people with injuries or disabilities–as if they were full-auto machine guns. There’s a public comment period during which we 2A people have the opportunity to let the ATF know that, even if we don’t need a brace for our pistols now, there may come a day when we do. Age and arthritis are no respecters of our personal need for self-defense, and this rule would compound those challenges. Below, SAF’s Alan Gottlieb explains what’s going on, and what you can do about it.


As the Sept. 8 deadline looms for public comment on the proposed rule change regarding handgun stabilizing arm braces, the Second Amendment Foundation has launched an ambitious effort to encourage and guide gun owners to submit comments to the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Read SAF’s comments here.

“Time is running out and we want to provide millions of targeted gun owners the means to weigh in on this alarming proposal,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “ATF wants to reclassify millions of stabilizing brace-equipped pistols by making them subject to the National Firearms Act. If that happens, current owners of such pistols would need to register their guns and pay a $200 tax on each one, or turn it in to the ATF, or take one of several other undesirable options.”

SAF has produced a video message about this proposal, and offers these suggestions on how gun owners should submit their comments:

  • You can submit your comments to ATF via the Federal eRulemaking portal at: here on or before September 8, 2021.
  • Your comment must reference docket number “ATF 2021R–08
  • Your comments should be original. ATF will not consider duplicate comments. See Commenter’s Checklist here if you want more information about commenting.
  • Your comments should be professional in tone. ATF will not consider comments with profanity or other inappropriate content.
  • Better comments describe how the proposed rule would impact the commenter.
  • You can also mail written comments to:

Denise Brown, Mail Stop 6N– 518

Office of Regulatory Affairs

Enforcement Programs and Services

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives

99 New York Ave. NE

Washington, DC 20226

ATTN: ATF 2021R-08

Mailed comments should be in 12-point font size (.17 inches) or larger, include the commenter’s first and last name and full mailing address, be signed, and may be of any length. ATF will treat comments postmarked on or before September 8, 2021 as timely.

“We cannot overemphasize the urgency here,” Gottlieb said. “Gun owners need to submit their comments now. This is just one more manifestation of the Biden administration’s effort to crack down on gun owners and the Second Amendment.”



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