California: Major Data Leak
On June 27, California Attorney General Robert Bonta announced that the California Department of Justice was releasing a 2022 Firearms Dashboard Portal that listed 242,727 individual firearms license applicants who received or were denied concealed carry weapons permits from 2011 to 2021 — including at least 140 current and former judges. Such details as a person’s full name, birthdate, address, gender, race, age, driver’s license number, criminal history (if any) and more was visible to the public for roughly 24 hours after the portal went live. While the public was supposed to be privy to certain information, this sensitive personal data was not supposed to be accessible.
“We acknowledge the stress this may cause those individuals whose information was exposed. I am deeply disturbed and angered,” Bonta claimed in a subsequent press release.
Bonta’s office also swore that it was investigating whether personal information might have been exposed in the Gun Violence Restraining Order Dashboard and Assault Weapon Registry, among other databases.
New York: Down The Rabbit Hole
In the now-famous legal decision New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen, the U.S. Supreme Court finally affirmed that the right of a citizen to “bear arms” is part of the U.S. Constitution. It is a victory for every American who believes that the Second Amendment is the cornerstone that supports other freedoms our Constitution outlines.
New York remains one of just seven “may-issue” jurisdictions: six states plus the District of Columbia. The New York position is based in part on anti-gun politicians and a 111-year-old statute. Supported by a variety of sporting and constitutional carry groups from the NRA to the USCCA, the New York Pistol & Rifle Association has fought restrictive firearms legislation in the courts for years.
At its most basic level, the Bruen case concerns the constitutionality of the 1911 Sullivan Act. That act required concealed carry permit applicants to prove “proper cause” — some special need to carry “distinguishable from the general public.” To complicate the process, the New York application process differs, says the USCCA, depending on the type of license and the particular ordinances in the issuing county. Applicants also need to provide four character references.
With certain politicians fighting for more and more gun control, this particular Supreme Court ruling is one giant victory for Americans. But the ruling isn’t without opposition from state officials in New York.
“While the Supreme Court decision has long-term implications, the decision has no immediate impact on firearms licensing or permitting,” Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul’s office reported. “This means people cannot immediately legally carry a concealed firearm without obtaining the currently required permits or licenses.”
Gov. Hochul jumped immediately into the conversation to “protect New Yorkers” by doing everything in her power to disenfranchise law-abiding citizens. As such, she backed a package of 10 bills to:
- Close “critical gun-law loopholes”
- Bar the purchase of semi-automatic rifles by anyone under 21 years old
- Prohibit the purchase of body armor (except for certain individuals in “specified professions”)
- Expand the list of people who can file an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO)
- Require law enforcement to file ERPOs under specific circumstances
- Strengthen crime reporting
- Close the “other-gun loophole”
- Require new semi-automatic pistols to be microstamped
- Eliminate the grandfathering of so-called “high-capacity” feeding devices
- Require social media companies to report “hateful content”
Not a single item in Gov. Hochul’s package will deter one bad actor from a single crime.
New Jersey: Let Them Eat Cake
Not to be outdone by New York, New Jersey is streaking forward with numerous and similar gun-control bills that will make only criminals feel safer.
Gov. Phil Murphy (D) is promoting yet another package of legislation — his third — that would practically destroy the American shooting sports industry. On July 5, he signed seven bills into law.
Look for the following laws to impact your rights in New Jersey and other similarly governed states:
- A1765/S1893: The bill allows the attorney general to bring cause of action for certain public-nuisance violations arising from the sale or marketing of firearms.
- A1302/S2903: The bill requires manufacturers and wholesalers to report ammunition sales. They must also create electronic records systems to store sales data, including transaction dates; type, caliber or gauge of ammunition; quantity of ammunition sold; purchasers’ names and addresses; and any other information state bureaucrats deem necessary.
- A4368/S2907: The bill requires firearms retailers to sell microstamping-enabled firearms upon determination of availability. Microstamping is defined as “a unique alphanumeric or geometric code that identifies the make, model and serial number of a firearm.”
- A4370/S2906: The bill requires training prior to issuance of a firearms purchaser identification card (FID) and permit to purchase a handgun.
- A1179/S1204: The bill requires firearms owners who become residents to obtain an FID card and register handguns acquired out of state.
- A4367/S2846: The bill outlines a longer sentence for building a firearm from a kit — to combat “ghost guns” — from a third-degree to a second-degree felony. Third-degree crimes carry a sentence of three to five years’ imprisonment, with a four-year presumptive sentence. Examples include aggravated criminal sexual contact, arson and motor vehicle theft. Second-degree crimes carry a sentence of five to 10 years’ imprisonment, with a seven-year presumptive sentence.
- A4366/S2905: The bill effectively bans .50-caliber rifles in New Jersey.
Gov. Murphy reportedly called the new gun-control regulations “common-sense” laws that “live up to our Jersey values.” So much for the rule of law and the U.S. Constitution.
California, Again: Once More Into the Fray
California has worked harder than most states to effectively eliminate the Second Amendment from within its borders. Unfortunately, violent crime continues to escalate, and countless Californians — finding themselves effectively defenseless — continue to abandon the Golden State for Texas and Florida.
Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has supported or signed every one of the following pieces of legislation:
- AB 311: The bill prohibits the display or sale of “precursor firearms parts” at gun shows on the 370-acre Del Mar Fairgrounds in San Diego.
- AB 1594: The bill creates “a private right of action against firearms industry members for failure to implement reasonable controls.”
- AB 2551: The bill requires the Department of Justice, if it determines that a person is prohibited from possessing a firearm, ammunition or firearms precursor parts and attempts to acquire any of these, to notify the local law enforcement agency with primary jurisdiction over the area in which the person was last known to reside.
- AB 1621: The bill outlaws many gun parts (“precursor parts”) and the tooling essential to building firearms.
- AB 1769: The bill seeks to prevent gun shows on public property in Ventura County, effectively north Los Angeles.
- AB 2156: The bill limits the number of firearms a private citizen can build to three per year and prohibits the use of 3D printing to make firearms or parts.
- AB 2571: The bill bans any marketing that might be “attractive to minors.” (California defines “minor” as any person under the age of 18 years who is required to attend school and any person under age 6.)
- SB 915: The bill forbids “state officers or employees, operators, lessees or licensees” to allow for the sale of firearms, parts or ammunition on state property.
- SB 1327: The bill practically encourages citizens to sue individuals in the firearms business.
- SB 918: The bill “reforms” concealed carry by expanding “gun-free zones,” requiring signage for businesses where individuals can carry and doubling training requirements. It allows state bureaucrats to subject persons asking for carry permits to official harassment, including psychiatric evaluations.
- AB 1227: The bill adds a 10 percent state tax on handgun sales and an 11 percent tax on the sale of long guns.
- AB 2870: The bill expands California’s ERPO restraining order to include roommates, dating partners and additional family members out to the fourth level of consanguinity and affinity (even a first cousin-in-law).
- SB 505: The bill makes firearms owners civilly liable for property damage, bodily injury or death resulting from the use of a firearm. It also requires firearms owners to have insurance and to keep evidence of coverage with their firearms at all times.
Colorado: It Never Ends
On its face, the Board of Commissioners of Boulder County, Colorado, consists of three persons elected at large to represent the county “as a whole” — except they have forgotten the people “as a whole.”
Denver’s politicians and officeholders allow each county, Old West ghost town, played-out mineshaft and municipality to make up its own rules about firearms. As such, Colorado jurisdictions have passed a confusing and often conflicting patchwork of local ordinances. Boulder got the message.
Recently, in imitation of their peers in New York and California, commissioners unanimously voted — without allowing public comment — to pass a significant anti-gun package. Citizens will only be allowed to comment on the five ordinances at a public hearing. The commissioners claimed they would consider oral comments at the meeting and written comments submitted online.
The “citizen safety” package includes the usual anti-gun talking points:
- Banning the sale of firearms to anyone under the age of 21 (even though they can enlist in the military at age 17)
- Requiring a waiting period of 10 days to sell or purchase a firearm
- Prohibiting the carrying of firearms in “sensitive” places
- Banning the sale of “assault rifles,” trigger activators and “large magazines”
- Regulating the possession of unfinished gun frames and guns without serial numbers, referred to by the gun-control crowd as “ghost guns”