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President Obama hit the ground running in 2016, renewing his initiative to implement what he calls “common sense gun laws.” Though the President’s recent executive actions mirror laws that California has been implementing for years, they will have an effect on gun violence in the Golden State.

Past attempts by the President to push for gun reform have been met with strong opposition by Republicans in congress and members of the pro-gun lobby, and rightfully so. Since it’s not the responsibility of the executive to write legislation, he has no business addressing an issue that most Americans feel should be left to congress.

As the Republicans hold a majority in both houses of congress, the President has thankfully been left with few options to effectively pursue gun reform.

In his first radio address of 2016, the president announced he would be meeting with Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director James Comey to discuss what options were available for executive action on gun control.

According to Vice News, the White House had spent the better part of December researching the issue and what measures could be taken at a federal level to reduce gun violence.

California already boasts some of the strictest gun laws in the nation, yet last month fell victim to the deadliest terror attack since 9/11. According to the Los Angeles Times, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) determined the handguns and two assault rifles used in the attack were purchased legally under California state law.

The president, pressured by higher ups in his own party, then addressed the nation from a pulpit in the oval office for only the second time. In his address he outlined his weak and ineffective strategy to defeat ISIS but couldn’t resist politicizing the massacre and pushing for more gun control.

Despite the recent attack, gun violence in California has been in decline since the early 90s. In a recent study done by the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, the number of Californians that were killed by gunfire dropped from 5,500 in 1993 to 2,935 in 2010. That’s a decrease of 56% in 25 years.

Even though California has extremely strict gun laws, some neighboring states do not share gun laws of the same caliber. States like Arizona, Nevada, and Texas do not yet require universal background checks under their state law.

An Attorney for the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, Ari Freilich, spoke to the San Bernardino Sun and said that, “states with weak gun laws and no (universal) background check requirements are a major source of crime guns here in California.”

There is little more that can be done to prevent this as under California state law you must register any firearm with the California Department of Justice’s Bureau of Firearms within 60 days of bringing it into the state and a portion of guns sold in other states are already illegal here in California.

“Though California law regulates the importation of firearms from out-of-state, unscrupulous individuals can too easily obtain firearms in neighboring states without a background check and bring those firearms into California,” Feilich said.

The President’s executive actions address some of the loopholes that are allowing “unscrupulous individuals” to obtain and bring out-of-state guns into California so easily.

According to Forbes magazine, under Obama’s recent executive actions, the ATF is requiring anyone selling a firearm to conduct background checks. The FBI is also making changes to their background check system to allow for 24/7 background check processing and improving notification of local law enforcement when a disqualified individual attempts to purchase a firearm.

Forbes also reported that the Attorney General sent a letter to states emphasizing the need for receiving complete criminal history records, information on persons disqualified for mental health reasons, and crimes relating to domestic violence.

Although the President’s executive actions will stem the flow of firearms into California from states that previously didn’t require universal background checks, it won’t be as considerable as Felich might hope.

Of the 21,267 firearms used in gun crimes that could be traced, the Sun reported only 2,452 (11 percent) were first sold in Arizona, Nevada and Texas.

The supply of firearms has a strong correlation with the rate at which gun violence fluctuates, but strict gun laws in California have done little to stifle gun ownership. The increased control does not have nearly the same effect on the gun market as it might on other markets with as scrupulous regulations.

Calgunlaws.com publicized figures from the Department of Justice (DOJ) that show gun purchases in California have increased 250 since 2008. The DOJ also reported that during the same time, crime dropped 23 percent, rape fell 33 percent, murder fell 24 percent, aggravated assault fell 20 percent, and even firearm homicide dropped 19 percent.

Those percentages far outweigh the 11 percent per year decrease of out-of-state guns coming into California.

The announcement of the president’s executive actions had an interesting effect on firearm purchases around the country and here in California. Nolan Sands, the general manager of the Scotts Valley firearms retailer, told the Santa Cruz Sentinel that Obama’s speech helped his business.

“Literally five minutes after he finished talking, my store was packed,” Sands said. “The direct relation as to when he talks and us getting busy is impeccable.”

Some Americans are actually afraid of the president. That’s why firearm sales go up any time he addresses gun control. The second amendment was put in the Constitution for more than protecting Americans right to hunt or protect their home.

The original framers of the Constitution wanted to make sure that the people always had a way to defend themselves from an oppressive government. When the president takes it upon himself to act unilaterally towards firearms, it fans the flames of fear among a group of people who already feel underrepresented in their government and marginalized in the media.

Fox Business reported that firearms companies stocks were some of the few that continued to rise during the recent stock market crash and that historically any attempt by the White House to implement new firearm restrictions has caused gun sales to skyrocket.

The president will have you believe that the best way to lower crime and gun deaths is more firearm legislation, but that is not true. Evidence shows that gun ownership is the biggest deterrent and law enforcement agencies around the nation strongly encourage gun ownership.

Breitbart News reported that the police chief of Detroit, James Craig, has been urging residents in the city to arm themselves for self-defense for the past two years. The sheriff of Maricopa Arizona, Joe Arpaio, is encouraging people in Arizona to carry guns more regularly after the a number of mass shootings across the nation in 2015.

Arpaio said that armed citizens can take out the bad guys “before the cops arrive.”

Contrary to the fears of many gun advocates the President’s executive actions strengthen gun ownership and do a great deal to keep guns out of the wrong hands. California gun control advocates and gun enthusiasts can sleep soundly knowing that gun ownership has never been higher and gun crime has never been lower.

Comments

  1. Ways and Means to End Conflict on Gun Control, Reduce Taxes, and Save Lives
    http://127.0.0.1/

    excerpt: “CONCLUSION. This study described an ideal method to reduce gun-violence cost, gathering responses from 1,300 gun advocates over a period of 12 months.Overall it can be stated without doubt that each and every American household pays at least $500/year in taxes and medical insurance to pay for gun-violence cost. The specific numbers are actually not relevant to the method described here, but it was found necessary to state them before a significant number of Americans would consider this analysis at all, and then, those responding to the analysis mostly said the data was simply wrong, or expressed naive views of rights to kill with guns, without accountability for wrongful deaths by those actually owning guns.

    First, with regard to the other data used in for the numerical deductions, I got so fed up with hearing accusations of bias from both sides, I went to the FBI databases and figured it all out for myself. I found crime only accounts for ~15% of gun deaths. 85% of all homicides are with legal guns. Over half of all homicides are people shooting people they know. Of those, most frequent are men shooting younger girls they know. There are many more accidents to gun owners’ own children than justified cases of self defense. Less than 1 in 30 of all homicides are justified acts of self defense, and just as often as not, people who are defending themselves shoot a child, or a relative by mistake. Also, I found the presence of a gun in a home doubles the risk of homicide. The presence of a gun locker or other safety measures does not reduce the likelihood of homicide. Two thirds of gun deaths are people shooting themselves. The gun lovers said, suicide isn’t really gun violence, so those deaths aren’t guns’ fault. So I am required to add, suicide attempts are 30 times more likely in the presence of a gun, and 10 times more likely to be successful with a gun than by other methods. All these facts were regarded with particular disdain by those desiring to promote gun proliferation, and not one of the 1,300 people defending inviolate rights to kill, in arguments over an entire year, said even one kind or sympathetic word for the dead. On the contrary, the most vocal 15% stated all people who were killed unequivocally deserve to die, even blaming accidental deaths on some vapid concept of necessary error, and discompassionately asserting with total conviction that all suicide victims should die without intervention anyway. However, those are only the people driving public opinion by the force of their vehemence, and the majority are totally oblivious to the deaths, believing that all the evidence and responsibility for death only applies to other people. They have no concern for the deaths of others whatsoever, let alone the increased risk to the lives of themselves and their families which the best impartial evidence indicates that they create by keeping firearms in their own homes.

    I am forced to conclude, too many Americans who get guns are just too angry, too stupid, too dangerous, or too insane to trust with firearms, and have no genuine concern for any other human life besides their own whatsoever, not even their own family and friends. If you were to go so far as to ask me how many: it sadly appears, out of the 1,300 choosing to advocate gun rights to me, the abrogation of social responsibility was exclusively predominant for 1,292 of them (99.38%). The majority of their claims are directly and deliberately false, without any ameliorative qualities. Almost all of the gun advocates are sociopathic, and many are purely psychopathic.

    In note of the virtual absence of reasonable conversation and the preponderance of direct hostility peppered with needless insults during a course of reasonable inquiry undertaken over the span of a year, the courts should indeed force gun control regardless of the public’s misinformed and uneducated opinions on the nature of the purpose of law. Both sides of the debate manipulate and distort statistics without any interest in truth, but the gun advocates only do so to promote the case for more killing, and to promote more gun sales, without any real consideration whatsoever of the superseding value of human life in ethics, morals, law and the Lockean social contract under which this nation was formed. None of those presented with any information proving their arguments wrong made any concession to the fact and simply proceeded to another objection without acknowledging any flaw in their thinking. Gun lobbyists moreover exhibit no interest whatsoever in changing public opinion on the value of human life, but simply monger fear, hatred and blame of others for the deaths they cause, challenging every single effort to stop homicide, suicide and injury out of nothing but self interest. The only possible way to create effective gun-control policies is to circumvent the gross abrogation of social responsibility is by forcing policy, ideally with the utilitarian method described here by law, and until such ideal can be realized, by as much as can be achieved–by gun taxes, mandatory insurance, and restrictions on sales–against the wishes of a vociferously pathological minority.”

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