Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on The Conversation

When the Colt gun manufacturing corporation announced in September that it would stop producing its AR-15 semiautomatic rifle for sale to the general public — to focus on handguns and military production —some gun-control advocates declared victory, saying the move would help limit the availability of assault weapons in the U.S.

The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence counted the news among “recent victories." Celebrity gun-control activists Michael Moore and Debra Messing also trumpeted Colt's move as progress toward eliminating the weapons from public circulation.

In fact, the evidence indicates their celebrations are probably premature.

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