SB 199 – Restoring the Right to Hunt with a Silencer

Sen. Holdman has introduced SB 199 which repeals the statute prohibiting hunting with a silencer.

Instead, under this legislation, if you use a silencer to illegally take a deer or wild turkey, the penalty is enhanced and a penalty is created for using a silencer while hunting on private land without permission.

Is this a problem? Are there a lot of hunters out there who are frustrated in their pursuits by the prohibition on silencers? Or is this just an example of the tactical subculture wanting to play with their accessories?

Seems like the fact that bullets are being fired in the area is exactly the kind of information we’d like people to have.


    • Jason says

      Agree, Michael.

      I come from a family of gun owners and hunters, and none of them I know would support this.

      The problem is that any lawmaker that votes against this will be labeled as voting against guns by the NRA.

  1. Don Sherfick says

    But doesn’t the Second Amendment include the right to keep and bear silent arms not only in self defense but also to defend against the encroachment of wild animals anywhere a citizen protected by its provisions happens to be, home/castle or not? This now seems to the the NRA’s universally automatic position.

  2. Johnny from Badger Grove says

    Possession of a silencer or suppressor is covered under the NFA of 1934. FBI check and a $200 tax stamp is required.

    It seems to be a uniquely American thing to associate silencers as Evil Things. In other countries they’re considered essential for considerate hunting and target shooting. Too many spy movies, I guess. Guns don’t really go “ZEWWWP! ZEWWWP!” with a silencer.

    • Jason says

      I have many family members that live near the woods. The loud ring of a rife is a useful thing when deciding what to wear or if even to go out at all.

      I know silencers don’t make guns silent, but with all of the idiots that shoot at anything that moves a twig, I want as much notice that there is shooting going on in the woods as possible.

      • Mary says

        Now that I am thinking about this, I am grateful that years ago my next door neighbor (we had adjoining 1/3 acre lots) did not have a silencer on his hunting rifle so that I knew to call my children in from play when he shot straight up in the air in the backyard to “test” something or other related to his upcoming hunting trip.

  3. Carlito Brigante says

    You really need to get diagnosed and into treatment. Speaking on behalf of the left, right, middle, someone with you paranoid delusions should not even drive, let alone own firearms.

  4. Freedom says

    Game. Set. Match. Right on time, Carlito says: “I’ll see your boxcar and raise you a psikhushka.”

    We’ve seen these people before. These anti-gunners are deadly and dangerous. They kill millions of their own countrymen, and they ride in under a banner of “safety” and “security.”

    • says

      I’m a gun owner. I don’t want guns banned.

      Shut the f**k up before they label all of us as crazy as you and ACTUALLY DO the thing we both don’t want. You are hurting us, not helping.

      Same goes for the NRA.

      • Freedom says

        Jason, if you think your rights are subject to what “they label us,” you’re not a real gun owner, and you don’t “get” this right, at all.

        Carlito, or whatever your name is, you’re trying to overthrow the basic ideas that this country was founded on, and you label *me* the insurrectionist? Patrick Henry would be shouldering his arm to protect America from you, not me.

        • Jason says

          Freedom, we live in a democratic republic. If a super-majority of lawmakers think that only crazy people are gun owners, they can repeal the 2nd Amendment.

          Public perception matters. You and the NRA are missing this point.

          • Doug says

            Probably doesn’t regard the government as legitimate, regards the right to bear arms as existing outside of the law, and envisions a bunch of gun owners standing off the tyrannical government that purports to repeal the right.

            • Carlito Brigante says

              Dog, my reply was to “freedrom,” not you. But your assessment is probably right. The dude probably runs his own freeman’s court and public record in his basement.

        • Carlito Brigante says

          Dude, I have taught Con Law at public colleges. I know more about the US consitution, its drafting and the failures of the Articles of Confederation that you will ever hope to know or could ever possibly know.

          And Patrick Henry, was post-prime in 1787 and an anti-federalist. I do not recall if he even made an appearance at the Constitutional Convention.

          But go ahead, keep your pecker up dreaming about shooting it out with American troops. Saves money on Viagra.

          • Freedom says

            If you’ve taught Con Law, you know precious little about the Constitution. It forever baffles me that constitutional law classes focus their energies on cases and moments occurring after the ratification, when, except for actual amendments, everything occurring subsequent to the ratification of the Constitution is utterly irrelevant to the document.

            Further, your writings here dispositively evince that you know dread little about the founding principles of this country, the AOC, the drafting of this country’s foundational documents or the grand motivations and lofty aims of the Framers. They wouldn’t admit you to their company, and you know it.

            It’s so funny to see people such as you finally realize that the social contract has limits and that many consider this government now in breach.

            Did you think you could push us forever? Did you think we would never shake you off? Do you further think that the “American troops” care to take orders from the likes of you? If you’re looking to start a fight only to run away and hide behind a big friend who will protect you, you may have gravely miscalculated.

            • Carlito Brigante says

              I will call the Supreme Court and tell them you said that they can take the rest of the day off.

              And I am proud to know that I am part of the ruling tyranical class that can crush you like an insect. But I am a vegetarian and animal rights activist so I do not wish to harm nonsentient creatures. You dodged a boot heel.

              BTW, there is a great editorial written by Reg Henry that appears in papers around the country.
              Some quotes:

              The biggest is a strange and disturbing twist on patriotism: Those who love their guns like little boys love their teddy bears (or their dinkies) insist that the Second Amendment is not about protecting a right to hunt, say, but the means of resisting government tyranny.

              Consider the irony: Every self-professed patriot becomes teary-eyed about the flag and those whose job it is to fight to protect it — and rightly so. By and large, members of the Armed Forces today are widely admired and respected.

              But if guns were used in an effort to overthrow a tyrannical government, guess who the enemy would be? Why, those same men and women of the Armed Forces marching under that same grand old flag. The president, if a reminder is needed, is their commander in chief.

              Count me out. The idea is totally repugnant. Tyranny, you say? People who raise the threat of government tyranny should be congratulated — but only for having lived a sheltered life. North Korea is a tyranny, the old Soviet Union was a tyranny, the United States is not a tyranny, not even close, not under Barack Obama, not previously under George W. Bush…

              Besides, the idea that the Founding Fathers were almost inviting armed insurrection with the Second Amendment does not square with the historical record. Not long after the Revolution, farmers in Western Pennsylvania rose up violently to oppose a tax on the whiskey they distilled from their grain (they wanted to become excited about something but the Steelers had yet to be invented).

              The Whiskey Rebellion was put down in 1794 by an army sent by President George Washington, who rode at the head of it. From the earliest, the federal government made it clear that it wasn’t going to tolerate any nonsense from armed blowhards who thought freedom meant anarchy.

              We should take the point. Gun extremists shouldn’t be allowed to justify possession of hugely powerful guns that can massacre a crowd of kids quickly and efficiently because those guns one day might need to be turned on the government to preserve freedom.

              At this point of our bloody history, this should not be a respectable idea. There is an old word that we should resurrect for this poisonous argument: treasonous.

              Read that word again, little dude. Treasonous.

            • says

              everything occurring subsequent to the ratification of the Constitution is utterly irrelevant to the document.

              This is simply not true, and completely ignores the essential concept of “context,” in order to discern underlying principles from their particular manifestation in a given context.

              It’s intellectually void.

              Why do you hate freedom so much?

              • Carlito Brigante says

                Kurt, “freedom’s” dead document interpretation of the Consitution would make even Justices’ Scalia and Thomas blush.

            • says

              Also, you’re the one who knows “dread little about the founding principles of this country,” inasmuch as you don’t even know what those principles are.

              You make the gross error of assuming that what are in fact merely the specific concrete manifestations of those “founding principles” in a given intellectual and social context, are somehow the principles themselves.

              Again, why do you hate freedom so much?

    • Carlito Brigante says

      I own guns also. I was raised around them and hunted until I was about 30. But that is irrelevant to this statement.

      “Freedom” is not as much “pro-gun” as a paranoid insurrectionist. “Freedom” has lived in a country that, with the exception of the civil war, has transfered power without violence for over 235 years. It allows virtual unfettered ownership of firearms, while when most other western democracies sensibly regulate them.

      I wonder if the paranoid insurrectionist streak is an unusual manifestation of “American exceptionalism.” This nation, which carries the notion that is is unique among nations, the “last, best hope,” and must remain ever paranoid and xenophobic lest its creation myth be exposed as just another variant of brittle and unexamined nationalism.

  5. Jack says

    Some topics have legimate difference. The problem often comes when advocates of issues go to either extreme. With abortion some would make illegal all abortions but do not hear of anyone advocating there be more abortions. With guns do not hear of anyone advocating banning of all guns but do hear from those that believe any restrictions of any kind involving guns is unamerican. And the list could go on on variety of issues where there seems to be some who would absolutely never agree that the law should reflect any position other than the one they hold.

    • Carlito Brigante says

      Good point, Jack. No one is talking about house-to-house sweeps taking guns. The proposals on assault weapons and large clips, and better background checks strikes many Americans as unreasonable.

      But the fringe groups and the gun lobby react as if we were taking Washington off the dollar bill and calling John Wayne gay.

      • Freedom says

        I don’t believe you. I know what you want. The line has been crossed, and it’s time to start liberalizing these excessive gun regulations.

        Once upon a time, they said there would never be anything so terrifying, outlandish and draconian as limiting magazine size, how or where a person might carry a firearm, or passing laws banning or regulating certain types of guns. Once, we thought there was no possibility of our country becoming so tyrannical that we would ban misdemeanants from the ownership of firearms. Now, we see they’ve enacted that, and want yet more. There is no limit to their assault on freedom.

        You’ve gone too far.

  6. Jack says

    On the issue of use of silencers for hunting I would strongly oppose for couple of reasons. Oppose as a land owner that would like to know where hunters are at. Oppose on the grounds that it is not very sporting and when virturally all hunters are there for the sport then any more advantage to hunter could be serious problem for wildlife population.

  7. Stuart Swenson says

    So if this proposed law is another one of those unconstitutional or illegal propositions (as stated by Johnny from Badger Grove), what is the problem? I guess the State will simply need to make a list of doomed laws to be defended. This is strange stuff.

    Doesn’t the state have a group of attorneys who tell these guys the scoop on this stuff? Is the problem that they just don’t listen?

    • says

      On the more egregious ones, it’s a pretty good bet that someone at LSA has let the legislator know there are likely to be Constitutional challenges.

      Sometimes on the closer calls, it’s entirely possible that legislation can get through the drafting process without constitutional issues getting flagged.

    • Tom says

      The other thing to consider is that a lot of these proposed laws are simply ways for legislators to “mark their territory” even though they realize that there is no way is hell the proposed item would become law or if by some means it did, that it’d be drop kicked to the curb by the courts in an instant.

    • Johnny from Badger Grove says

      Stuart, tell me where you get the idea I think that repealing the law, or the law in itself is unconstitutional?
      You’ve got me confused with Freedom, don’t you?

    • Freedom says

      Stuart, there is absolutely no constitutional implication in Indiana allowing suppressed hunting within the borders of Indiana. This law removes an Indiana prohibition within Indiana. This is legislative action that’s fully within Indiana’s authority to permit.

      • Stuart Swenson says

        Following the previous comment and the entries, I want people to know that I am over my head here, but I meant the Federal law, not Constitution (sorry for the misunderstanding). I looked in the ATF site, and they said the following were prohibited by the 1934 Federal law: Firearms subject to the 1934 Act included shotguns and rifles having barrels less than 18 inches in length, certain firearms described as “any other weapons,” machineguns, and firearm mufflers and silencers.

        Maybe there has been some change in the Federal law. We have some knowledgeable folks here who might weigh in.

        • Johnny from Badger Grove says

          You didn’t read far enough. rifles with barrels less than 18″ (called Short Barreled Rifles, or SBR’s), silencers, and machine guns are allowable upon application to the BATFE, an FBI background check including a photograph and fingerprints, and a $200 transfer tax on each item. There were amendments to the act made in 1968, and the act of 1986 restricts machine gun ownership to those guns legally available for transfer at the time of the act.
          Possession of current production of machine guns are permitted to the military and law enforcement only.

          Like I said earlier, a “silencer” does not make a gun silent. It’s like the difference between a factory exhaust system on a Harley and what these “Loud Pipes Save Lives” infants run. You still know somebody’s firing a gun, it just doesn’t make you ears ring.
          And if you own property and you need to hear the full-volume report to know somebody’s hunting in your woods, didn’t they knock on your door and ask permission first? If not, call the DNR, they’re trespassing.

  8. Stuart Swenson says

    So we don’t know whether the shots fired are bullets, blanks or flares. Like watching a game you think is football, but you don’t know the game the players are actually playing. Some are playing chess.

  9. Carlito Brigante says

    And then this on “Gun Appreciation Day” In my old home town, the place I wish to retire in and the coolest place in the US.

    I wonder how much those five dead people appreciate guns?

    And if the murderer would have beaten all of them to death with a sand wedge would we have a “Sand Wedge Appreciation Day?”

  10. Kirk, Across the Hall says

    This is a sound (hardy har har) bill.

    This bill will encourage the use of safety equipment such as suppressors in hunting and thus contribute to the public health by protecting the hearing of Hoosiers and allow surrounding property owners to enjoy their property without unnecessary noise.

    Ultimately the goal is to make suppressors more available so that we can reform the NFA and make suppressors a Title I item rather than Title II with its $200 tax and Form 4. Ideally making suppressors unregulated is optimal but one step at a time.

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