Modern Sporting Rifle

As recreational shooters and hunters increasingly enjoy the use of modern sporting rifles, an assault weapon ban could seriously hamper this right.

modern sporting rifle

Key Facts:

  • AR-platform rifles look like military rifles, such as the M-16 but function like other semi-automatic civilian sporting firearms, firing only one round with each pull of the trigger.
  • Versions of modern sporting rifles are legal to own in all 50 states, provided the purchaser passes the mandatory FBI background check required for all retail firearm purchasers.
  • Chamberings include .22, .223, .308, and more than a dozen others, and the rifles' accuracy, reliability, ruggedness, and versatility serve target shooters and hunters well.

There is no bigger trend in the shooting industry than the modern sporting rifle and no bigger controversy in American politics today.

These rifles, based off of the AR-15 platform, have become wildly popular among recreational shooters and hunters, with a growing number of manufacturers making these rifles and selling out of them.

The AR stands for Armalite rifle, after the company that developed them in the 1950s, according to the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation. As their popularity has grown, these semi-automatic rifles have come under fire from politicians, like Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s (D-Calif.), who has introduced legislation that includes bans on more than 150 types of semi-automatic firearms because the rifles look like military, automatic weapons. However, nearly every rifle used for recreational purposes has been adapted from military designs. This is just the 21st Century example of a 200-year trend in rifle development.

In fact, these rifles come in a wide array of calibers, and are used for everything from plinking to varmint hunting to big-game hunting to competitive shooting to personal defense. According to the CSF, “crime control legislation should be based upon solid facts, not emotions, cosmetics, or appearance.”