If one Australian locality gets its way, museums that display guns will be forced to all but destroy their own historical collections in the name of “public safety.”
According to this, the famous Lithgow Small Arms Factory, which houses one of the most extensive displays of both old and modern firearms in Australia, could be forced to mutilate their own gun collection in accordance with a new government requirement that mandates all guns housed in museums be rendered not only unusable, but completely inoperable.
While current law requires gun museums to remove the firing pin from all displayed guns, keeping them intact but unfireable, a new expanded regulation in the Australian state of New South Wales calls for all displayed guns to be made “permanently inoperable” by essentially welding them closed.
“Permanent inoperability involves inserting a steel rod down the barrel of the firearm and welding the muzzle and chamber, welding the barrel to the receiver, removing the firing pin and welding the hole, removing all internal springs, welding internal components and welding the bolt, magazine, external hammer and trigger in a fixed position,” Lithgow said. “By doing this, the firearm will be reduced to a metal blob rather than a genuine firearm.”
The Lithgow Small Arms Factory, which once manufactured weapons for the Australian military in WWI and WWII, now includes a volunteer-run museum that houses an extensive collection of firearms including antique guns from the early 1900s, as well as guns that citizens have turned over during national gun confiscations instead of handing them over to the government.
The museum, which is currently petitioning the government for a waiver, has said that new law would require them to mutilate as much as 70 percent of their own collection and end in an “unimaginable loss of history.”