The first Federal Assault Weapons Ban was enacted in 1994 and expired in 2004. A new Assault Weapons Ban of 2013 is being proposed. What are the disadvantages of the Assault Weapons Ban of 2013, if any? (Examples from the 1994 version that would apply to the new 2013 bill are welcome.)
There are disadvantages to everything.
It's reasonable to assume that fewer assault weapons will be sold, which is a disadvantage if you are a manufacturer or dealer of assault weapons. It is possible that some may go out of business, or lay off workers. There might be some other negative effect on the economy - probably very small. Likewise those who organize recreational firing of assault weapons will either have to stop, or face more licensing restrictions.
If you are a person who wishes to own an assault weapon, then this ban curtails your ability to do so.
As is usual in politics, it is not a question of whether or not there are any disdvantages, but of balancing the advantages and the disadvantages.
This is the disadvantage of an "Assault Weapons Ban:"
The AWB doesn't apply to criminals.
It would create a Black Market, because anytime a product that's in demand gets banned, someone is going to step in to meet that demand. And with that demand comes a lot of bloodshed. Just look at the Prohibition and the War on Drugs.
Doesn't solve a gun violence, because you can't legislate behavior. Just look at all the mass shootings. What's the common factor? They were social outcasts. And I refuse to call these "mass shootings," because it doesn't designate that the shooter hit/killed anything. So out of all the "mass murders/massacres," only one involved the use of an AR-15 (Aurora, Colorado).
The primary disadvantage I've seen is that this bill includes no solution / countermeasure to also support the previous form of arms acquisition.
Such a countermeasure could come in the form of a licensure provision for owning the type of item whose general-ban is proposed.
E.G. the arms and arms-accessories could be moved into the Class C license, or a new class designed for this middle-ground.
In other words, this bill proposes to limit a constitutional right (remove aspects of its practice) without simultaneously proposing an alternative or remediative course of action for those that wish to maintain all allowed dimensions of said right.