A bill that would require parents to inform schools that they have a gun in the house was quickly shot down.
A California gun law going too far? This time it wasn’t just gun owners who thought so, but lawmakers in the Golden State came to the same conclusion. It didn’t even take long for the proposed bill to get shot down.
The bill, which would have been just another law in a long line of strict requirements tossed upon California gun owners, would have required the parents of school children to inform school officials that they have a gun or guns in the house. The measure didn’t even make it through its first committee vote. The measure also brought together two groups that rarely see eye-to-eye – the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Rifle Association.
The opposition from both of these groups, along with two more organizations, both of which represent rank-and-file law enforcement, helped doom Senator Anthony Portantino’s proposed gun owners bill. Seeing where the bill was headed, Sen. Portantino promised that he would amend the bill drastically if it were to survive the committee vote. Portantino and his few supporters said the bill if enacted, would help prevent mass shootings and any other gun tragedies. Only two of the seven committee members voted to move the bill forward.
Senator Dave Cortese, a Democrat who is well-known for pushing many a criminal justice reform, even said of his opposition to the gun owners bill via CBS 13 News, “Those go so far beyond my core beliefs in civil liberties that I just can’t associate an ‘aye’ vote.” Senator Connie Leyva, the Senate Education Committee’s Democratic Chairwoman, also was in opposition to the bill and said, “I believe a better approach is by addressing student mental health,” Leyva said via the Orange County Register. “This is an important issue, a critically important issue, but this bill is not the answer.”
This is sort of surprising for a state that holsters its guns on the numerous restrictions on gun owners. Among the restrictions gun owners face is the state’s ammunition magazine size limit to 10 bullets. Firearms that fall into California’s definition of assault weapons are also outlawed. The Golden State has strict purchase requirements along with waiting periods. Background checks are required for any person who is buying ammunition.
There are a number of bills that could affect gun owners on the docket for the California legislature to mull over. One of the most talked-about bills is one that would allow private citizens to sue any gun maker that would force them to stop selling assault weapons. Another bill that has been making noise, both good and bad, is related to the selling of assault weapons bill. This one, if passed, would make it much easier for people to sue and make gun companies liable for any shootings that cause either injury or death.
There are several more bills that would stop gun sales on government property, four bills that have a bullseye on unregistered “ghost guns,” and there is another measure trying to move forward that would require all firearms dealers to employ a digital video surveillance system in their stores. These bills are meant to not only protect business owners but gun owners too.
Portantino’s bill would have had parents or guardian gun owners who have a student in public or charter schools to disclose if there are any guns in the home, who is the legal owner, where and how they are stored, and how accessible they are to the student. As written, the bill would have also required school officials to work with law enforcement in searching on-campus items such as backpacks and even lockers if they feel there is a credible threat of violence. They would also be required to search any electronic device to look for clues.
Along with Portantino, two other Democratic senators also pleaded with the committee members. Senator Steve Glazer argued via Fox 5 New York, “The status quo is unacceptable. After all these tragedies, we always say our hearts and prayers go out to those who have been hurt. And we pledge to try to do something to make it not happen again. Even in the quiet of this hearing room, I can still hear the cries of family and parents,” he added emotionally. “I can see the tears flowing down their faces. I can hear their memorial prayers about a young life cut short.”