Free Minds & Free Markets

California Lawmakers Aim to Restrict Gun Rights

Golden State legislators join the gun control chorus in the wake of Sandy Hook.

It took only days before California’s lefty legislators reacted to the horrific Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy with a fusillade of bills designed to take California closer to Democratic leaders’ unstated but obvious goal: making it essentially illegal for citizens to own firearms in California.

I write “essentially” because the strategy isn’t to ban guns outright, but to mire ownership in so many layers of regulation that owning a gun becomes even more frustrating and costly than operating a business in this state. Legislators aren’t stupid. Direct assaults on gun ownership generate pushback, but killing this right through a thousand cuts works fine.

California already has the toughest gun regulations in America, yet legislators (including a numbskull Republican) have introduced a long list of new proposals at press conferences where they used the Connecticut tragedy to grandstand.

“They were mowed down,” said Los Angeles Democratic Sen. Kevin de Leon. “I think that viscerally it will give a lot of political officials around the country the political courage to do the right thing.” But it’s not clear what de Leon means by the right thing. California has passed 45 gun-control laws in the last 23 years. (Liberal Connecticut has tough gun laws, too.)

California has long waiting periods, background-check requirements, limits on the number of gun purchases, bans on gun sales to people with mental illnesses and felony convictions, bans on high-capacity magazines, and on concealed carry. The governor recently signed a law banning the open carrying of unloaded long guns. The list goes on. That’s in addition to myriad federal restrictions.

If you think we’re safe from gun violence because of all those rules, check out the murder rates in Los Angeles, Oakland, and San Bernardino.

Now de Leon is targeting ammunition. “We don’t think about the fuel that feeds the violence, and that’s ammunition. If you want to fish, you have to secure a license to fish. If you want to cut down a Christmas tree in California—this is legally factual—you have to secure a permit at a cost of $10. Yet anyone who walks into any gun store in California can buy all the ammunition they want.”

That statement is more of an indictment of the kind of society we’ve become—so regulated and taxed that one isn’t allowed to cut down a Christmas tree without getting government permission—than about firearms. But I digress.

Like everyone, I’m still shaken by the school-shooting. I’m all ears when it comes to finding real solutions to violence, but am tired of cheap, predictable attempts to turn tragedy into another assault on our liberties and wallets.

After this week’s legislative frenzy, I headed to one of the largest Sacramento-area gun dealerships to purchase that 12-gauge shotgun I’ve been considering only to find the shelves virtually bare. The Daily Beast reports on a similar situation throughout the country.

Americans realize that an assault on private gun ownership is coming and it’s best buying a weapon now while they still are available at a store rather than only on the black market.

Perhaps de Leon and others might ask constituents why they would want a gun. This morning, my wife handed me the local newspaper with a story about three men who were arrested for murdering one of my neighbors in October during a robbery. Is it unreasonable to want the wherewithal to defend one’s family? The cocking of the shotgun—the international sound of “you’re not welcome here”—would be all it takes to dissuade most intruders.

Gun-control advocates are utopians. Their perspective is that if guns no longer are readily available, that violence will evaporate. But there are so many guns in circulation it would take decades to reduce their availability—unless legislators adopt the police-state policy of sending cops door-to-door to confiscate them. Even then, there would be black markets and other methods for evil folks to commit mayhem (bombs, knives).

It’s better to let people arm themselves. An operator of a private school told me that California’s 1995 Gun-Free School Zone Act banning guns within 1,000 feet of schools is making it difficult to hire an armed security guard.

There’s a reason criminals are more likely to ply their trade in “gun free” zones than in heavily armed neighborhoods. There’s no better check on a diabolical gun owner than decent gun owners. I personally don’t like guns and wish everyone were peaceful and kind, but it’s better to be realistic than to pursue a fantasy world.

Gun-control laws exempt groups of government officials. Anyone who believes working for the government relieves people of the tendency to do bad things has never heard the phrase “going Postal.” There are endless stories of authorities misusing their firearms on- and off-duty, which is a reminder of the main reason the founders gave gun ownership the second spot in the Bill of Rights.

Californians crazy enough to believe these new proposed laws will make them safer ought to be happy. The rest of us should find a well-stocked gun store as soon as possible.

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  • Paul.||

    I have an ugly sticker on the side of the case that my XD came in, but I refuse to remove it: NOT LEGAL IN THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA.

    13 Rounds of .45 is a lotta lead. Suck it California.

  • ||

    So y'all are doubling down on violently stupid.
    Wouldn't a box of Extenz be a lot cheaper way to fix your, um, shortcomings?
    Dickless losers.

  • RG||

    Simply owning something isn't a violent act. And what's with your obsession with others dicks?

  • bmp1701||

    I was not aware of the names of any wang-enhancing medications. Why are you familiar with them?

  • Frank_Carbonni||

    I find it funny that you keep referring to guns as dicks. Nobody here ever made the comparison. Just you. I guess that means that you are afraid of penises.

    We should no longer tolerate your homophobic and misandrist rants anymore.

  • Vogon's Poet||

    What it like being complete douche nozzle everyday of your life, YGBKM?

  • Brubaker||

    You may not be violent, but you've definitely got a double dose of stupid.

  • Libertarian Barbarian||

    "Who ya rootin for? D-E-M! Who ya rootin for? D-E-M!"

  • Drake||

    Yet another reason I left California and will never live there again.

  • ||

    Hey California politicians, this is sitting in my waistband right now. FUCK YOU.

  • Paul.||

    I am NOT clicking on any links showing what's in your waistband...

  • ||

    You are a wise man, Paul.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Don't be afraid, Paul. It's a picture of 100lbs of body fat, and the term "waistband" is used very loosely.

  • Ska||

    A waistband forced to constrain that amount of body fat will eventually buckle.

  • ||


  • ||

    How could I leave this behind?

  • ||

    Actually, it is no fun to shoot. It twists around in your hand from the recoil, and just doesn't want to stay still. It makes sense, being so light, but it's certainly a self defense weapon and not a "have fun at the range" weapon.

  • Adam.||

    Absolutely. I couldn't take the feel of it so I spent a little more on a Kahr CM9. Tiny carry gun and still great fun to shoot.

  • ||

    "Absolutely. I couldn't take the feel of it so I spent a little more on a Kahr CM9. Tiny carry gun and still great fun to shoot."

    Mine's 6 inches.

  • Vogon's Poet||

    Your clitoris?

  • Adam.||

    KSG's are awesome. IMPOSSIBLE to find. PF9's are great cheap CC guns.

  • Redmanfms||

    And they are like most Kel-Tec products, unmitigated crap that will fall apart with any serious usage.

  • ||

    I'm going to assume it's a picture of your virginia.

  • ||

    Remember: with TEAM BLUE, everything is projection. So what do you think this guy has?

  • OldMexican||

    And women suffer from penis envy... or something like that, right?

    Stoopid CNN folk.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    People like Paul Waldman dream of a return to Fedual Japan, where only the noble Samurai were allowed to bear arms. So noble were they, that they carried a blade that was specifically designed to be held against the throats of the peasant women they raped. In his masturbatory fantasies, Waldman sees himself as a neo-Samurai, pledge to the service of the State, with all the rights and "privileges" thereof.

  • ||

    Hey, Retarded Mulatto, King George III is not planning to invade AMerrrrrika and try to take it back. Leave the revenge fantasies to mel Gibson.

  • Vogon's Poet||

    Listen Nancy, if you want to be a subjugated pissant go right ahead and keep your head shoved up your ass.

  • sarcasmic||

    When neither logic nor reason are on your side, attack the person.

  • ||

    This is the fun bully argument anti gun people tote out all the time (hell, Family Guy did it for crying out loud). It's an old tactic and quite frankly isn't worthy of a response. That dickweed can take his "progressive" horse shit, fold it until it's all corners, and shove it up his ass.

    CNN hates bullies, but man, that opinion sure sounds like bullying to me. Of course the "also linked" opinions about teachers with guns is also disingenuous. (why did we want to arm pilots again?)

    Another in a string of reasons why CNN is bad for my blood pressure. :)

  • ||

    Warty answered this one a couple of years ago: what's more dangerous, an armed man with a tiny penis, or an armed man with a giant floppy horsecock?

  • Killazontherun||

    According to The Confusion, the later. I suspect Stephenson of being wrong about Teach. He was English, after all.

  • Zeb||

    Someone should definitely take Paul Waldman's man card away.

  • fish||

    Are you sure he ever had one?

  • BuSab Agent||

    Of course I'm compensating, if I could kill a person at 300 feet with my dick, I wouldn't need a gun.

  • ||

    who else but dickless losers define their self-worth by their guns & ammo?

    If Amerrrrika is serous about cleaning up gun crime by doing some prevent defence, the best place to start would be the gun fetishists who haunt these boards.

  • Vogon's Poet||

    Who else but complete ass clowns troll on Reason's comments?

  • The Late P Brooks||

    But if you think Californians are safe from gun violence because of all those rules, check out the murder rates in Los Angeles, Oakland, and San Bernardino.

    A magic spell only works if you believe in it really really hard.

    How many California Legislators have been shot to death?

    Huh? Answer that, smart guy.

  • ||

    How many? Apparently not nearly enough. :)

  • Killazontherun||

    Well, the SLA did kill an official for his pro student ID stance.

  • Paul.||

    But there are so many guns in circulation it would take decades to reduce their availability

    Gun controllers are addressing that right now. They admit that, but that doesn't deter them. The most recent argument I heard was (paraphrased), "Yes, it will take some time but if we start now, the payoff will come. It's worth the wait to see these crimes eliminated or reduced."

  • ||

    Just like the UK. Man, these gun controllers sure are super smart.

  • Guestocliese||

    Prohibition has a long and storied track record of not only success, but also encouraging a free and harmonious relationship between the government and the governed...give it a chance.

  • Suki||

    Decades? Doesn't he know that guns are some of the most durable durable goods ever manufactured?

  • ||

    The "license to fish" is a tax. It's not a requirement to learn how to fish, or how to make sure you're not fishing where you're not supposed to be...

    Sometimes the logical leaps politicians make are astounding.

  • Hugh Akston||

    This isn't a pet license, it's a fishing license. And it's mandatory!

  • ||

    Enough about your promiscuous mother, Hugh.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Epi, your body may be as perfectly sculpted as it was 20 years ago when you whupped my fat ass every time we met. But today...I feel lucky.

  • ||

    Hugh, I see you're still able to limbo under the bar of fashion sense.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Kiss my front-butt.

  • ||

    Question: gunt vs. front-butt, can both be applied to both genders? I would argue yes, yes they can.

  • OldMexican||

    Gun-control advocates are utopians. Their perspective is that if guns no longer are readily available, that violence will evaporate. But there are so many guns in circulation it would take decades to reduce their availability — unless legislators adopt the police-state policy of sending cops door-to-door to confiscate them.

    You will still have these folks try with all their might to disarm the population under the guise that "we don't need to defend ourselves from government because our government is legitimate."

    I would subscribe to this notion of government legitimacy if all those that legitimized the actions of government (the People) were also armed well enough to change the government, because saying a government that governs over DISarmed people is legitimate is like accepting the legitimacy of the armed kidnapper over the disarmed victim, only because the victim does not object.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    I'm stealing that one.

  • Redmanfms||

    You will still have these folks try with all their might to disarm the population under the guise that "we don't need to defend ourselves from government because our government is legitimate."

    The most common argument I hear from slavers is that the populace doesn't need guns to defend against the government because resistance is futile.

  • ||

    "The most common argument I hear from slavers is that the populace doesn't need guns to defend against the government because resistance is futile."

    What, exactly, are you afraid of?
    King George III?
    Your own prez and Congress?
    Your own army?

    And should they come to get you, what are you going to do about it? You are massively out-gunned?

    Get in the real world, gun fetishists.

  • RG||

    Your world where you'd gratefully lick boots?

  • Sevo||

    Yep, that shoe polish must taste just GREAT, Mr or Ms me!
    BTW, what sort of a pathetic excuse for a moral agent would offer those sorts of arguments?

  • Robsconst||

    "You are massively out-gunned?"

    Do you mean like the VietCong?

    Or, do you mean like the Taliban, who we went to wipe out, and now we're having to negotiate with?

    Or, perhaps you mean outgunned like the Libyan rebels, Egyptian rebels, and Syrian rebels?

    Yep, the U.S. military is so big that there's no sense in even keeping our right to defend ourselves from them anymore. It would just be pointless and a lost cause. Just like the VietCong, Taliban, Libyans, Egyptians, and Syrians.

  • Vogon's Poet||

    Keep carrying the water for the government and fellating Obama, Ace.

  • James Anderson Merritt||

    "...check out the murder rates in Los Angeles, Oakland, and San Bernardino." You forgot Salinas, which is just down the road from me.

  • James Anderson Merritt||

    I am a native Californian. My son and I know how to shoot, and we have always been responsible in our use of firearms. I have always wanted to have an AK-47, but the jerks in Sacramento made this illegal in California, many years ago. I want to see legislation to repeal our Statewide "assault weapons" ban, or a successful court case to overturn it. Responsible gun owners should not be impeded or penalized because of the irresponsible or criminal ones...

  • Paul.||

    I want to see legislation to repeal our Statewide "assault weapons" ban,

    Not going to happen now.

    or a successful court case to overturn it.

    That's your only hope, Obi Wan.

  • playa manhattan||

    The GP Wasr10 is still legal in CA (10 round version). I put a down payment on one in October when it went on sale at Turner's. They were out of stock (and still are) so I got an HK USC instead last week. There will be more WASR 10s early next year, but they will probably be illegal by then...

  • SKR||

    you may need a license to fish, but you sure as hell don't need a license to buy fishing lures. What was that bullet argument again?

  • ||

    In fact, you don't need a license to buy fishing rods OR fishing lures. You only have to pay the tax if you USE them.


  • Sevo||

    The SF Chron has turned into 'all gun ban, all the time', riding the dead kids for all it's worth.
    Two front page 'stories' (editorials disguised as news) and the entire editorial page with a graphic of 'scary gun' across the page.
    Tough, Chron: Amendment II.

  • Vogon's Poet||

    California's economy is the shitter, they granted in-state tuition to Illegal Aliens, they jacked up taxes on the ZOMG rich peoplez, but Restricting Rights is what the legislature has time to do?

  • NorEastern||

    Why propose difficult and expensive solutions such as putting armed security personnel in every school, mall, and theater in the US when you can simply outlaw the sale of all high rate of fire weapons in the US? Then you just implement a significant gun buyback program and add an extra $0.50 tax for every round of ammunition. Simple, straight forward, fiscally responsible, and we have all the systems in place to administer the implementation. Anything more complex is just ludicrous.

  • Vogon's Poet||

    Gun buy backs don't work and you aren't going to add .50 to ammo sold on the black market.

    Nobody lawfully is selling select fire assault weapons in the United States.

  • KenK||

    Not about the guns. It's about the control.

  • Victus||

    It's appalling that most of the argument has been set on the concern of "assault" weapons and high capacity magazines. The clear message sent by America is we clearly don't care to actually do anything to fix gun violence. The left and parts of the right sicken me with their apathy and clear lack of understanding the issues at hand. To even have a conversation of LIMITING magazine size says what? We will do nothing to stop the violence we will just limit the amount of people you can kill. So, in a vacuum, in theory, only ~9 would have been killed in Connecticut. This is no solution what so ever. There is literally no way to un-invent the gun, no way to control them from the bad people. The only logical solution is the contrary, precisely as stated " the only solution to a bad guy with a gun, is a good guy with a gun." A limit of 10 rounds means nothing, as there will always be higher capacity mags available, also killers will just switch to a more "effective" caliber. No need for multiple rounds per innocent.

  • Victus||

    A tac-mag reload only takes seconds, and a transition to pistol even shorter. Without enumerating all the other areas to gain efficiency needless to say the are more solutions than answers. Everyday people are killed because of liberal and center ideals of criminal justice. The 2 firefighters that were just killed were killed by a guy who used a hammer to kill his grandmother, which they pleaded down to 17 years, he then decided that "he needed to do the only thing he was good at, killing people." I Bellevue Wa. Earlier this week, a 21 or22 year old kid, shot 1 and wounded another in a bar the Seahawks were in. This killer was convicted in 2008 of beating a homeless man TO DEATH which he did 1 year in juvenile detention. I'm willing to say the problems aren't the guns, to which there is not solution any way, the problem is societies intent on policing feelings not behaviors. Please read this article, it articulates more eloquently than myself, the funny part, it was written in 1995, and is almost prophetic.

  • Victus||

    1 last rant. We want to legislate things that a large percentage of America has no idea what they are talking about. From the term assault weapon, to the calibers and capabilities of the weapon system. The term semi automatic, fully automatic, Burst fire ( selective fire as previously stated) I would prefer that a mass shooter take a fully automatic ar-15 with a 30 round magazine. Then you can insure he would kill less than 2 people before reloading. Automatic weapons are nearly useless if not a belt fed weapon system. There is a reason why the best tactical shooters in the world use semi-automatic weapons (select fire) and rarely switch to auto , usually in a break or react to contact situation. .223 is a varmint round. similar to the 5.56mm that is good for fighting Russians with flak vests. It is not effective for non-armored thin persons, with the exceptions of certain advanced types of 5.56x45. We as a society have these knee jerk reactions and all pretend to be experts on subject that we don't have any information or real life experience in. 10 million people signing a petition means NOTHING. We need to stop the vocal minority from ruling the quiet majority.


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