More often than not California’s elected politicians don’t know whether to scratch their watch or wind their butts. They love to use the word “loophole” in an attempt to make sense of a bad idea and the one-gun-of-any-kind-per-month is raising it’s ugly head. Again.
California law currently restricts purchases of handguns to no more than one per person per month because liberal politicians think this will foil the bad guys. That’s not enough for Senator Anthony Portantino (D-Los Angeles County), though – citing “loopholes,” he wants to extend this useless law to include all firearms plus wants to remove the exemption for private party transfers and redefines a lower receiver as a handgun.
Portantino says that “Recent data suggest that long guns are becoming a significant piece of California’s gun trafficking problem… Preventing the flow of illegal guns is important to public safety regardless of whether the firearm is a handgun or long gun, or purchased new from a dealer or through a private party transaction. Limiting firearms sales to one gun per month is a recognized strategy to reduce gun trafficking and keep firearms out of dangerous hands…”
The problem is – other than being “pie-in-the-sky” policy, is that there is no recognized strategy that demonstrates limiting gun purchases to one a month does anything to reduce crime. Gun Owners has always supported efforts to prevent the flow of illegal firearms, but there is zero evidence that someone who purchases two guns a month – or ten guns for that matter – is a danger to society or engaging in illicit activity! In fact, in spite of the fact that long gun purchases in California have literally exploded to over a million per year, a 2015 report by the Department of Justice 2015 (Firearms Used in Crimes) reveals they are used minimally in crimes – roughly 12%.
Virginia used to have a one-handgun-a-month law but it was so ineffective, the state repealed it. Now, because of a smuggling operation into New York, Virginia Governor McCauliffe wants to re-up the policy. Maybe he believes those East-coast gun smugglers will pay attention.
As for our own California-grown politician, Portantino recently said there is no reason why someone would need to buy more than one long gun each month. “This is not the Wild West,” he said. “California’s in the 21st century, and you shouldn’t be able to walk into a gun store and come out with an arsenal.” As if that could actually happen. Waiting periods, registration, etc. must have plumb slipped his mind…
Of course, we all know that those determined to get their hands on a gun illegally aren’t deterred by one-gun-a-month. Bad guys don’t buy guns from retail stores in broad daylight, under the watchful eye of store security. Bad guys don’t volunteer their ID or fill out forms and stand patiently while the dealer calls the Department of Justice to see whether they’re a felon. And last we checked, there’s no one-gun-a-month policy when it comes to theft or illicit back-alley deal-making.
It’s true – the days of the Wild West are long gone, but Senator Portantino would be well served if he were better informed about the millions of gun owners in California who are responsible and conscientious. There is nothing to fear from the law abiding, and it’s about time he and his political buddies figured it out.