It won’t happen that way. Just look at Canada and the UK. It’ll happen through incrementalism.
Every time there is one of these tragedies involving firearms, the laws get tightened. More types of firearms or accessories become illegal. Present owners will be grandfathered in - they will not come for your guns. Too much hassle and potential for negative publicity. But usage, including movement, will get more and more restricted. Registration will creep in, and it will become more and more of a hassle. Dealers will face increasing red tape and potential for criminal prosecution and fines for minor errors in bookkeeping.
“Safe storage” laws will require inconvenient and expensive storage facilities for both dealers and owners, and in thise case violations will lead to heavy fines/jail time/confiscation.
Regulations on the construction firearms themselves in the name of ‘safety’ and also identification, like micro stamping and also warning labels like Ruger had (do they still do it?) engraved into their barrels and all sort of other regulations will make it increasing not worthwhile to manufacture firearms.
So eventually manufacturers, dealers, and owners give in, inch by inch, step by step, until like the UK not so many years ago, handguns were virtually banned completely, it’s hardly news.
The only reason it hasn’t happened already is the 2nd Amendment but when the supreme court can make abortion legal as a ‘privacy right’ then how long will it be that one packed by Obama finds a way around it?
Expat, FYI, Canada just ditched its gun registry.
If it happens according to your incrementalism theory it will just drive gun owners underground. We may choose to register some of our more innocous weapons, such as a single shot 22 cal. rifle, an older model 38 Special or an older shotgun.
What we will start buying is surplus new/used military weapons that have been stolen and illegally shipped to countries all over the world. Military weapons are stolen every day and sold on the black market, including here in the US. None of these weapons will have any sort of paper trail, after all they are stolen. The manufacturers will not go out of business because governments always want more and newer weapons, none of these black market weapons will be registered or reported. Dealers for civilian type weapons may suffer and even go out of business, but the black market is here forever
As far as storage is concerned, if you don’t want the authorities to find some thing that they don’t know you have to begin with, you just put it away in a safe location that only you know about, short of torture or gross stupidity it will be secure. Transportation would not be a problem, unless you think the authorities have the man power to search every vehicle in detail in the US.
The only thing your scenario does is turn other wise honest citizens into potential criminals, the government is working hard to do that already. It does not matter what the government does, weapons will always be available to those who want them and are willing to bend or break the illegal rules any government may try to put on them. One thing the governments should consider is the fact that most military grade weapons are what they don’t want us to have; if they force our hand, military grade weapons is what we will be forced to buy underground.