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2nd Amendment

Gun Law For Beginners: What Is A Pistol Brace And Is It Legal Or Not?

Banned stabilizing pistol braces for a 9mm pistols

If you follow Second Amendment politics at all, you’ve probably heard the term “pistol brace” used. You might also be wondering what a pistol brace is, how it’s different from a stock, and, given the contentious, ever-changing news around pistol braces, whether or not they’re currently legal. 

Pistol braces are one of the most confusing areas of Second Amendment law. People aren’t sure what they are or if they’re legal or even what they are. But many people still see them in the news over and over and wonder what all the fuss is about.

VNSH Holster

We’re hoping to set the record straight for our readers by educating them about what a pistol brace is, why you might want one and how to stay on the right side of the law. 

What Is A Pistol Brace?

A pistol brace is something like a stock but for a handgun. Note that if you put a “stock” onto a handgun, you’re breaking the law because stocks on handguns are illegal. However, if you put a “brace” onto a pistol that’s a completely different item… at least as far as the ATF is concerned. 

The purpose of a pistol brace is to add additional stability when shooting a firearm. Unlike a stock, a pistol brace is going to brace against you by wrapping around your wrist – think of a wrist rocket rather than something like a stock. This makes shooting with one hand easier, but it can also be a useful device if you have arthritis, a weak grip or other mobility issues related to your hand.

The reason this becomes a problem legally is that some pistol braces are designed to skirt the legal line. They come as close as they possibly can to being a “stock” without actually being a stock. This is why the ATF has turned their sights on pistol braces. 

What Is The Difference Between a Brace and a Stock?

The difference between a brace and a stock can be extremely difficult to define. The problem for you is that you might think you’re buying a “brace” but what you’re actually buying is a stock. That’s fine until you stick it onto a pistol in which case you’re breaking the law.

VNSH Holster

The main objective difference is if there’s a method to “shoulder” the part. Can you put the pistol brace onto your shoulder? If so, it’s not a brace, it’s a stock and you might get a knock on your door from the ATF for owning it. On the other hand, the law becomes slightly ambiguous at times because multiple rulings have been handed down, some of which boil down to what you intend to do with the piece of plastic or metal once you attach it to a gun. 

Is A Pistol Brace Legal Or Not?

As if you weren’t confused enough already… now we get to talk about the rulings on the pistol braces. 

The ATF’s latest ruling is that anything with a barrel under 16 inches that can be shouldered is a short barreled rifle. So if you take a bullpup, add a stock to it (or a brace that can be shouldered) and you don’t have a bullpup anymore… you have a short barreled rifle. If you have that, you’d better have the proper paperwork or you’re looking at some serious time in prison. 

One of the biggest reasons that this is an issue is with AR pistol builds. Without a brace, these are just… pistols. But if you happened to buy one of these in the last few years, you’re going to want to check and see if the barrel is at least 16 inches long, because if it’s not, you might find yourself in serious legal hot water, because that’s now a short-barreled rifle.

Braces can still be sold, but you can’t sell a weapon with a barrel shorter than 16 inches with a brace on it unless you have the proper paperwork. 

VNSH Holster

There was a special exception on the $200 tax, but that ran out on May 31st. This exception did not apply to a lower receiver with a pistol brace attached. The main thing is that if you have a weapon that would be a short barreled rifle because of its brace, the ATF expects you to register it, pay the $200 tax and get the proper paperwork. There are no exceptions for people with disabilities. The ATF doesn’t make any commentary on state law, so if you live in a state with an SBR ban, you need to call the attorney general and find out where you stand. 

Getting a new brace is legal, but… if you stick it on a weapon you’re stepping into potentially dangerous legal territory. Consult with a qualified attorney before you start making any modifications to any firearms you own that might run you afoul of the law. 

Have you ever used a pistol brace? How are the new regulations impacting you? Leave a comment below and let us know. 

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2nd Amendment

Forces of Freedom Push Back Against National Red Flag Laws


The upcoming visit of Vice President Kamala Harris to Florida isn’t just a routine affair; it’s a strategic move to promote yet another assault on our constitutional rights by the Biden administration. The so-called National Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) Resource Center, presented as a tool to prevent violence, is actually a thinly veiled attack on the Second Amendment. Let’s delve into why conservative voices and Republicans are vehemently opposing this Orwellian initiative.

A Closer Look at ERPOs: A Conservative Stand for Freedom

Under the guise of preventing harm, ERPOs grant authorities the power to strip individuals of their firearms based on vague and subjective criteria. Modeled after domestic violence protection orders, these laws trample on the rights of law-abiding citizens, eroding the very foundation of our freedoms.

Erosion of Due Process: A Fundamental Concern for Conservatives

At the heart of conservative values lies a steadfast commitment to due process and the rule of law. ERPOs flagrantly disregard these principles, allowing for the seizure of firearms based on mere allegations, often without the opportunity for the accused to defend themselves in court. This erosion of due process sets a dangerous precedent that conservatives cannot abide by.

Targeting Law-Abiding Citizens: Conservative Opposition

Despite claims of targeting individuals deemed a threat, ERPOs have the potential to be weaponized against law-abiding citizens. By exploiting vague criteria and subjective judgments, authorities can effectively disarm individuals without just cause, infringing upon their constitutional right to keep and bear arms. Conservatives recognize this blatant overreach and refuse to stand idly by as their rights are trampled upon.

A Federal Overreach: Conservative Concerns

Conservatives staunchly oppose the creation of the National ERPO Resource Center as a blatant overreach of federal authority. This centralized bureaucracy threatens to undermine the sovereignty of states and the rights of their citizens. Conservatives believe in the principles of limited government and federalism, and they refuse to allow the federal government to dictate firearm policies that should be left to the states and local communities.

Resistance from the Right: Conservative Leaders Speak Out

Republican leaders have been at the forefront of the opposition to this Orwellian initiative. Voices like Reps. Thomas Massie and Marjorie Taylor Greene have sounded the alarm, urging Americans to resist this assault on their freedoms. Conservatives across the country are uniting to defend the Second Amendment and push back against the Biden administration’s agenda.

Conservatives understand that the true path to safety lies not in surrendering our rights but in upholding the principles of liberty and justice for all. The Biden administration’s relentless pursuit of gun control measures is an affront to these principles, and conservatives will continue to stand united against any encroachment on our freedoms. It’s time to reaffirm our commitment to the Constitution and reject any attempts to erode our Second Amendment rights.

What do you think of the push for national red flag laws? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. 

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2nd Amendment

Federal Judge Rules Second Amendment Protects Gun Rights of Illegals


In a groundbreaking decision, U.S. District Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman of Illinois has ruled that the Constitution extends Second Amendment protections to illegal aliens who enter the United States illegally. The ruling comes in response to a case involving defendant Heriberto Carbajal-Flores, challenging a federal prohibition on illegal aliens owning firearms.

Constitutional Protection for Second Amendment Rights

Judge Coleman’s ruling, delivered on Friday, asserts that while there exists a federal ban on illegal immigrants possessing firearms, this prohibition is unconstitutional as applied to Carbajal-Flores. Despite the federal law being deemed “facially constitutional,” the court found that there is no historical basis for firearm regulation that justifies denying Second Amendment rights to noncitizens who have not been convicted of violent crimes.

Judge Coleman stated that the statute violates the Second Amendment. Consequently, the court granted Carbajal-Flores’ motion to dismiss the charges against him.

Legal Precedent and Constitutional Interpretation

In reaching her decision, Judge Coleman referenced the landmark Supreme Court ruling on Second Amendment rights, emphasizing the absence of a historical tradition allowing the government to deprive noncitizens of their constitutional right to bear arms. This interpretation underscores the fundamental principle that the Second Amendment applies not only to citizens but also to noncitizens residing within the United States.

Implications and Future Proceedings

The ruling by Judge Coleman carries significant implications for the legal landscape surrounding gun rights and immigration. By affirming that the Second Amendment protects the rights of non-citizens, the decision challenges existing federal laws and sets a precedent for future cases involving similar circumstances.

Moving forward, the decision is likely to spark debates and legal challenges regarding the intersection of immigration status and constitutional rights. As the case progresses, it will be closely monitored by legal experts, advocacy groups, and policymakers alike, shaping the ongoing discourse on gun rights and immigration policies in the United States.


Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman’s ruling represents a significant development in the ongoing debate over Second Amendment rights and immigration laws. By affirming that noncitizens, including those who enter the country illegally, are entitled to constitutional protections, the decision highlights the importance of upholding fundamental rights regardless of citizenship status. As the legal proceedings continue, the implications of this ruling will reverberate throughout the legal and political spheres, shaping future policies and interpretations concerning gun rights and immigration in the United States.

What do you think of the federal court’s ruling? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. 

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2nd Amendment

South Carolina Embraces Permitless Carry: Strengthening Second Amendment Rights


In a resounding affirmation of Second Amendment principles, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster has signed permitless carry into law, making it the second Republican-led state in as many days to adopt constitutional carry gun laws.

Governor McMaster’s Stance on Permitless Carry

Governor McMaster hailed the new legislation as a crucial step towards enhancing public safety and ensuring that law enforcement agencies possess the necessary tools to combat illegal gun use and possession by criminals. Speaking on the significance of the law, Governor McMaster emphasized its role in enabling law enforcement, prosecutors, and judges to keep career violent offenders behind bars, thereby safeguarding innocent South Carolinians from harm.

The NRA-Backed Bill: Key Provisions


Backed by the National Rifle Association (NRA), the permitless carry bill allows eligible citizens aged 18 and older to carry a firearm in public without the need to obtain approval and a permit from the government. This legislation represents a significant departure from the previous regulatory framework, which required individuals to undergo a permitting process before carrying a firearm in public spaces.

Bolstering Public Safety

Proponents of permitless carry argue that it enhances public safety by empowering law-abiding citizens to exercise their inherent right to self-defense without bureaucratic impediments. By removing the requirement for a government-issued permit, permitless carry ensures that individuals can protect themselves and their loved ones promptly in critical situations.

Legislative Approval and Support


The bill garnered substantial support in both chambers of the South Carolina legislature, with the state Senate passing the legislation in a 28-18 vote and the state House approving it with a vote of 86-33. This bipartisan support underscores the broad consensus among lawmakers regarding the importance of upholding Second Amendment rights and promoting individual freedoms.

Addressing Concerns and Misconceptions

Critics of permitless carry have raised concerns regarding potential risks associated with expanded firearm access. However, proponents assert that responsible firearm ownership, coupled with stringent penalties for criminal misuse, mitigates these concerns and promotes a safer environment for all citizens.

South Carolina’s embrace of permitless carry represents a significant victory for proponents of Second Amendment rights and individual liberties. By enacting legislation that empowers law-abiding citizens to exercise their inherent right to bear arms, South Carolina reinforces its commitment to upholding the principles enshrined in the United States Constitution. As the national discourse on gun laws continues to evolve, the passage of permitless carry in South Carolina serves as a beacon of hope for those who champion individual freedoms and the preservation of constitutional rights.

Leave your thoughts about the victory of the Second Amendment in South Carolina in the comments below. 

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