California Tells NRA To F*ck Off, Passes Several Gun Reforms

While the federal government is at a chronic standstill in dealing with gun violence, the largest state in the union is doing something about it. On Friday, California’s governor, Jerry Brown, signed six bills into law that would make it harder for the wrong people to get guns.

The bills would require background checks to buy ammunition and the purchase would be registered with the California Department of Justice. The term “assault rifle” will be broadened to include more guns, as assault rifles can only be loaned to family and magazines will be limited to 10 rounds or fewer.

“My goal in signing these bills is to enhance public safety by tightening our existing laws in a responsible and focused manner, while protecting the rights of law-abiding gun owners,” Brown said in a statement.

Source: USA Today

Brown also vetoed some bills, including one that would make stealing a gun grand theft. That, Brown said, “proposes to add an initiative that is nearly identical to one which will already appear on the November 2016 ballot.”

He also vetoed a bill that expanded the definition of “firearm” to include the homemade kind. It also would have limited purchases of guns to one a month. “While well-intentioned, I believe this bill would have the effect of burdening lawful citizens who wish to sell certain firearms that they no longer need.” said Brown.

The third vetoed bill would have allowed employers, coworkers, metal health workers and school workers to get restraining orders against gun violence. Currently, restraining orders are only available to family members when it comes to gun violence.

The fourth would require gun theft victims to report to law enforcement within five days. “I continue to believe that responsible people report the loss or theft of a firearm and irresponsible do not,” Brown said. “It is not likely that this bill would change that.”

California currently has some of the toughest gun control laws in the nation. They work. The last time California passed major gun laws was in the early 1990s and the result has been dramatic.

Gun violence across California dropped 56% from 5,500 gun deaths in 1993 to 2,935 in 2010, according to the study, which took into account California’s expanded population from about 30 to 37 million people over the same period.

Among all 50 states, California has perhaps the strongest gun control laws. “California is at the very top end of firearms regulation,” legal expert Bryan L. Ciyou and author of “Gun Laws By State” told msnbc.

The current laws include a ban on military-style weapons and high-capacity magazines. There are also laws empowering law enforcement and adding safety requirements to handguns. The bills that Brown just signed will strengthen the laws that are currently on the books.


Featured image via Justin Sullivan with Getty Images