by Sharon Bernstein
On April 12, 2021, AR-15-style weapons are on exhibit for purchase at Firearms Unknown in Oceanside, California, in the United States. Bing Guan for Reuters
Reuters, SACRAMENTO, Calif., Feb. 1 – Days after two mass shootings left 18 people dead in the most populous U.S. state, California Democrats on Wednesday vowed to pass new legislation to defend state prohibitions on carrying concealed firearms from conservative legal challenges.
The proposed legislation would increase the minimum training needed for acquiring a permit, raise the age at which a gun owner can apply for one, and outlaw drinking while carrying a hidden weapon. Additionally, it would designate sensitive areas—where concealed firearms would not be permitted—in airports and around schools.
State Senator Anthony Portantino, a Democrat, said, “There are simply too many gun violence tragedies in America, pushing us to the point of practically being numb.”
Following the U.S. Supreme Court decision last year that invalidated New York’s concealed-carry permitting procedure and expanded gun rights, the bill was submitted in the state Assembly, which is controlled by Democrats.
The California proposal would comply with that rule by eliminating a state requirement that applicants for concealed-carry permits explain their need for one and by allowing private property owners to permit hidden guns in some circumstances where they might otherwise be prohibited.
Democratic Attorney General of California Rob Bonta claimed that the legislation was crafted to be compliant with Supreme Court ruling and withstand legal challenges. Gun owners and pro-gun rights activists have contested numerous gun laws at the state and federal levels.
Democratic California Governor Gavin Newsom recognised that neither of the two mass shootings that occurred last month in Monterey Park or Half Moon Bay could have been stopped by the idea, but he insisted that it was not put forth in response to those tragedies.
However, according to Newsom, when combined with existing gun control regulations, the proposal will form a component of the regulatory framework that has helped California achieve one of the lowest rates of gun violence in the country. The legislature rejected a proposal very similar to this one last session, but Newsom expressed confidence that the new one will be approved this time around.
by Sharon Bernstein