Once upon a time, CBS Sacramento posted the following article, with the header “Should Jerry Brown sign a bill that bans the future sale of many semi-automatic rifles with detachable magazines?”
Many people responded on Facebook, some of whom were on our side, and some of whom weren’t. I was requested to join in and toss in my few cents. Unfortunately for the folks in the thread, I happened to be in writer mode at the time, and I decided it’d be a perfectly usable blog post if I just copied the text here and cleaned it up a little.
For background before we begin on my diatribe, if you’d like, you can stop in at Gunwiki.net’s 2013 California legislation page and see which laws I’m talking about. You can see all the bills proposed, plus *GASP* read the actual text of the bills themselves so that you can be better informed than 90% of the fools shooting off their mouths about the subject on both sides of the fence.
To begin with, this legislation was written by either fools or liars. It was drafted in response to the Aurora and Newtown shootings, both of which used guns already banned in California. The only thing this ban will do “FOR THE CHILDREN” is to throw their grandpas, perhaps even their parents, into jail. It’ll also keep the children, years down the road, from ever owning normal semi-auto centerfire rifles, all because of shootings which used guns which are already banned under current California law.
As of today, 9/14/13, it has not yet passed. Brown may sign some of the anti-gun laws he’s been given by the legislature, but it’s very unlikely he will sign them all. Brown didn’t propose these laws, and he hasn’t said he’s going to sign them all. Anyone screaming their head off about recalling him at this point should really just shut up. If he signs them, start the effort. In the meantime, get recall efforts going on DeLeon, Yee, and various folks who pushed these laws forward. Brown himself though, has vetoed a bunch of anti-gun bills in the past, even though he’s signed some. Even the anti-gun lobbyists mentioned in the article aren’t optimistic at all that he’ll actually SIGN these.
This bill needlessly endangers honest, non-violent people. History has shown that California will not adequately notify the public of their duty to register their newly minted “assault weapons”. The previous bans (yes, there were two – one back in 1989, and another in 1999) In both cases, CA consistently failed to let people know they need to register! I’ve personally been in the sad position of telling a daughter that her father in his 60s, who’d owned his AR-15 for 20 years, was actually guilty of a felony for merely possessing it, even though it’d only ever been in his safe or the shooting range the entire time. He was convicted and sentenced to, if I recall, three years for the simple non-violent possession of a gun that was perfectly legal when he bought it.
Imagine if they banned salt shakers, and ran an ad in the newspapers and posted notice on the nightly news about it. That’s the only way people found out that it was time to go to get registration cards, fill them out, and send them in. And most gun owners never even found out. Even in our modern society, not everyone checks the internet every day. How many people will actually honestly miss the notification that they needed to register? And how many people would only find out once the cuffs go on? That’s exactly what California did the last two times they banned “assault weapons”.
If they were only banning AR-15’s and AK-47’s for people like me, it’d be one thing. But this time, they’ve come for grandpa’s wooden rifle too. Literally for decades, people have bought Mini-14’s and Springfield M1A’s, precisely because they are so innocuous that they expect to be able to leave ’em in a safe for 20 years and they’ll be just as legal when they take ’em out. This ban actually covers all of these traditionally safe guns, in addition to the military-style semi-autos which I collect. You see, this law won’t do a thing about me. I personally own more guns than a SWAT van, and I keep up with California law as it changes. I’ll always remain compliant with the law, and when enough new laws have been passed, I will move out of the state rather than break the law. But grandpa won’t even know his guns are illegal now, and he’ll be the one paying the price of this idiotic legislation.
And if you aren’t too worked up about grandpa going to jail, then you should piss yourself thinking about what I’ll now be able to do legally. I own a truly astonishing variety of guns, all of them in a California-compliant configuration. The California-compliance parts prevent them from being handled readily. They slow down reloads. They cripple the guns so that they are less “scary” to bed-wetting hoplophobes. But once they become registered assault weapons, the California-compliance parts are no longer required. The CA compliance gear is on those rifles precisely so that they do not qualify as assault weapons. Once the registration card comes in the mail, your gun is an assault weapon. It’s legally as evil as it can ever get, and you no longer need the California-compliance parts. It’s like getting a special license plate that says “No speed limit for you anymore, buddy”. I’ve got semi-auto clones of the AR-15, AK-47, MP5, RPK, FAL, G3, P90, F2000, Stoner 63, and others. For the love of all that is holy, I even own 50 caliber semi-automatic AR-15 pistols! If you’re terrified of guns, why do you want to make it legal for me to remove ALL of the California compliance hardware from that?
And then there’s the fact that these laws are an exercise in futility anyway. Back in the 1960s, a few Federal marshals had to “gently suggest” to rednecks that they step out of the way of the black children they were escorting to school. 5 years from now, with the direction SCOTUS is going, Federal marshals will likely be here to “gently suggest” to sheriffs that they approve our concealed carry permits. Not too long after that, they will be here to “gently suggest” to our legislators that our entire assault weapon ban is unconstitutional – not just SB374, but the entire thing. Rather than wasting time with this, I propose that the hoplophobes consumed by their small-minded fear of inanimate objects owned by ordinary people, seek therapy now rather than waiting ’till the last minute.