California’s gun owners got a small victory this past week when a federal judge blocked a law that targeted gun magazines.
The proposed law was two fold. One, it outlawed the new sales of weapons with a “bullet button” that allows for easier detachment of magazines; two, it required gun owners who had guns with this “bullet button” to register their weapon with the state as a so-called “assault weapon.”
The bullet button was an innovation by gun manufacturers in response to a previously passed, onerous California ban on new rifles with magazines that can be detached without the aid of tools.
National Rifle Association attorney Chuck Michel strongly argued against this new law. His main contention was the overly broad nature of the bill, saying that it created over “40 new assault weapons definitions.”
“It seems like they’re trying to stretch the law to cover a lot of guns that shouldn’t be deemed to be assault weapons under the law,” Michel went on to tell the Associated Press.
This new proposal would outlaw any NEW guns sold that got around this previous law, but keep old guns that got around the old law. Effectively, this law is another patch to cover a loophole discovered in another law California legislators passed to restrict the Second Amendment freedoms of California gun owners.
Despite the passing of its original gun registration bill, California still doesn’t have a functioning website for gun owners to register at.
Many gun rights advocates are vehemently against a gun registrar because of fear that this will lead to a statewide confiscation of their lawfully attained, Constitutionally protected guns.
Kern County Sheriff, and past president of the California State Sheriffs’ Assn., Donny Youngblood, says even if the law had passed, he had no plans of raiding peoples homes and businesses for their magazines. He does admit the law might help in other areas.
“If they show up in an investigation, they could be a tool for further investigation,” he said
California’s tactic seems to be to make owning a gun and the necessary accessories illegal. In 2000, the state banned selling large-capacity magazines, but grandfathered those who previously owned them. Deemed not to have gone far enough, in November of last year 63% of Californians approved Proposition 63, which bans owning magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition.
If this most recent anti-ammunition law were to have gone into effect in a few days, any Californian who owned the banned magazines would have been susceptible to fines, or if found guilty of a misdemeanor, would face maximum $100 fine AND up to 1 year in jail.
Considering the aggressive, anti-gun attitude of California, law abiding citizens are worried about aggressive state prosecutors who can seek the maximum, a year in jail, for having a magazine that was lawfully attained.
California’s governor, Jerry Brown, has been very virulent in his attacks on guns and their owners. Just last July, Brown signed scores of gun control bills into law. These bills were offered as ways to stiffen the states gun laws, which are already among the strictest in America.
Gov. Brown has many allies in California’s push to make the right to bear arms nearly impossible. Former far-left, San Francisco mayor, now Lt. Gov., Gavin Newsom, who was the primary proponent of Proposition 63, say the law is important to enforce because “Large-capacity magazines serve only one purpose: efficient and effective mass murder”.
Another anti-gun ally is state Attorney General Xavier Becerra. He argues the new magazine laws are necessary because these larger capacity magazines have been found at the scene of high profile mass shootings, citing Orlando, Columbine High School, Sandy Hook Elementary School and San Bernandino.
This is an interesting take by the state AG, especially considering the facts.
In the various shootings Becerra cited, (Columbine: 15 people died 18 years ago; Orlando shooting: 50 people died 1 year ago; San Bernardino: 14 people died 2 years ago; Sandy Hook: 28 people died 5 years ago), the lives of 107 people were lost.
While no one disputes that all life is precious, that total across 18 years pales in comparison to the 662 people murdered in Los Angeles county in the last 12 months.
That is 519% more people in an eighteenth of the time.
In Chicago, the situation is even worse. To date, over 947 people have been murdered. It is nearly impossible to own a gun in Chicago, so these are not legally owned guns murdering people.
It does not take a long time to find countless figures on the slaughter going on in Chicago or Los Angeles. Just recently in Chicago, 7 people in just 12 hours.
Where is the countering argument that maybe gun laws are not keeping people safe because only good, law abiding people follow the laws? You are not hearing it from the liberal media or from blue state AG offices or legislators.
Europe has even tougher gun laws, yet the people of England do not feel very safe right now. The police in England do not even carry guns. This lack of guns, by the population or the police, has not stopped England from enduring a wave of attacks from people not using guns to cause mass death.
In the recent Nice attack, 87 people were killed and 487 were injured, with a van.
In the Paris concert shooting, 130 people were killed, hundreds more injured.
In a country of over 320 million people, state officials cannot legislate bad acts away, no matter how hard they try to act in the name of “safety.” California’s crime stats bear out that fact.
Taking away constitutional liberties over safety does not give people more safety, but it does give them less freedom.
With people like Brown, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsome and Becerra only law abiding citizens seem to be worried, and with good reason. To this date, no criminals have shown up at local police stations or AG offices to turn in magazines or guns.
These moves had have the desired effects of making gun owners live in fear and attaining a gun legally nearly impossible to own, which will have effectively banned guns. At this rate current rate of anti-gun laws being passed, gun owners will be forced to go back to the days of muskets, where they had to load one shot at a time.