YouTube Removes Gun Videos Showing Legal “Bump Stocks” After Vegas Shooting

I wouldn’t call myself a gun expert, but I am pretty familiar with gun laws and what may be legal to own in the United States versus what isn’t going to fly anywhere in the country.  After watching a couple of videos from the saddening incident in Las Vegas last week, I hypothesized on a Facebook post that the shooter probably had a “bump stock,” along with a YouTube video I found demonstrating the device:

The Bump Stock Hypothesis

My hypothesis — based on the rate of fire I could hear in the videos and knowledge of the difficulty any civilian in this country would have obtaining a real machine gun — was confirmed after photos leaked from the shooter’s hotel room.

If you’ve not yet become familiar, the “bump stock” is a legal rifle modification that is just two pieces of plastic with a spring between them.  The spring allows the trigger to release itself using the kinetic energy of the gun, allowing for the firing of the next round far faster than would be possible by manually releasing the trigger.  They are sold for as little as $100, and some gun enthusiasts have pointed out that with practice, you can use your shoulder like the spring and get faster rate of fire even without the $100 mod.

But when I went back to the video that I had posted, I got the following message:

YouTube Gun Censorship

YouTube, it seems, has now decided that videos showing perfectly legal guns in perfectly legal ways are “harmful or dangerous content” that violates its content policy.  People shooting real machine guns can still be found all over the site, and indeed, they haven’t gotten around to banning all the videos yet, but several of the videos that had been around for years have now disappeared.

I’m apparently not the only one who noticed.

I must assume that reason behind this is to make a political statement in favor of gun control, but why?  Watching videos of bump fire in action is pretty shocking when you’ve never seen it before, and if anything, I’d expect it would prompt the public to call for their immediate ban.  Google has, quite simply, taken it upon itself to impose its morals on all of us and to deprive the public of information.  Given the control over the Internet that Google has, I think we have a right to demand some objectivity rather than moderation practices based on emotions and feelings.


12 thoughts on “YouTube Removes Gun Videos Showing Legal “Bump Stocks” After Vegas Shooting

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  1. The 1st Amendment doesn’t apply to them so they can censor whatever they want. Same for Facebook. The only thing we can do, use something else. Find another site to post videos on and use it instead. If enough people do that, youtube will cease to exist or be irrelevant. I saw a list of video sites that are a lot less restrictive than youtube a few weeks ago. I recall live leak being one of them. Still, it is odd that they think taking something like that off their site will stop people when it is all over the news. It just shows stupidity at its worst.

    1. Obviously they “can” do whatever they want without running afoul of the 1st Amendment, But I “can” call them out on their bullshit, too. We all should demand better from the companies that we do business with.

      1. I agree but some think the 1st applies to everyone when it doesn’t. You know that. I know that. Some don’t. Sadly, far to many miss those first five words. That comment wasn’t aimed at you but at those who miss those first five words.

        I don’t see exposing what they are doing changing them. The best way to change them is to make them irrelevant by using something else. When enough people do that, then it won’t matter whether they change or not. Do I think your post talking about it is a good thing, sure. Change anything, not likely. Youtube, Google, facebook and countless others have been called out for their actions and as far as I know, they haven’t changed a thing for the better. Some may have gotten even worse at it.

        One good thing about your post, I starting downloading youtube videos, before they are removed. 😉

  2. I forgot to mention. If you have some videos that you want to save for later, there are tools that will download the videos to your hard drive. That way even if youtube removes them, you still have a copy. There’s one called download helper that works with Firefox and likely a few others as well. Of course, you could run into things like this:

    Used Mounted
    2.7T /home


  3. The problem with banning bump stocks is that you’re closing a door with a wide-open window next to it. While it’s not as reliable as a bump stock you can do the same thing with a rubber band. Are we going to ban rubber bands?

    1. My brother who died well over a decade ago had his own version of a bump stock. It was a piece of a boat seat that he put between the stock and his shoulder. Even the local Sheriff and deputies used to come watch him shoot that way. It doesn’t even require taking a screw out or even attaching it to the gun. One could just attach it to your shoulder and use the same piece of foam for any gun they pick up.

      The downside, you lose accuracy but it also shortens the life of the rifle, a lot. Sometimes after just a few fun times, the barrel was ruined due to the heat.

      I don’t understand why people think laws are going to stop people. Murder, regardless of the tool used, is already illegal. Same can be said for drunk drivers, drug dealers and a whole host of other laws that are broken every day. I think it is time to start getting rid of laws and restore morality to the people.

    2. Agreed — not allowing citizens to possess machine guns (or similar) seems rational, but this ban would be quite ineffective. And, FWIW, *yes* we have banned rubber bands — the ATF in 1996 sent a letter to a guy telling him that a shoe string he attached to his rifle made it an illegal machine gun. How silly, right?

  4. They wouldn’t want the public to realize that bump stocks don’t work on tripods and also that it is impossible to fire 2 bump stocks simulationsly.

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