The right to carry and bear weapons is important to maintaining personal protection, but certain weapons have been deemed more dangerous than good. Since the acceptance of the National Firearms Act of 1934, the Federal and various state governments have been regulating the commerce of firearms and the types of weapons that citizens may possess, carry, or control. Each state has individual restrictions that serve to protect the public against weapons that have been deemed dangerous.
The government has deemed that certain types of weaponry have simply been associated with unlawfulness and are not necessary for recreational use, or personal protection. Because of this status and in the name of lawful behavior, certain weapons have been deemed illegal. The following list indicates some of the weapons and destructive devices that are not legal for possession by ordinary citizens:
- Short barreled rifles
- Short barreled shotguns
- Machine guns
- Destructive devices
- Molotov cocktails
- Cane guns
- H & R Handguns
These weapons, among others, are illegal unless they meet the standards for “antique” firearms, which includes any firearm made before 1918 in many states. This qualifications protects antique trades that are important sources of revenue and investment for many people.
The definition of short barreled fire arms generally includes any shotgun or rifle which has a barrel length of 18″ or less. These firearms are typically modified for the purposes of concealment and for this reason have been deemed unsafe for public possession. Concealment is one of the most common characteristics among weapons that have been deemed illegal for civilian possession and use.