The eyes of Texas will be upon gun owners come Jan. 1, when the state’s new Open Carry law takes effect, but a lot more people will be watching California, where three new gun laws also become effective on Friday.
What will be more interesting will be to look at both states one year from now to see whether open carry in Texas or more restrictive gun laws in California have made people safer, less safe or had no impact on public safety one way or the other.
In the Golden State, the three new gun restrictions include SB199, which requires new markings on “realistic” looking airsoft guns to show they are toys; SB707, which prohibits firearms on campuses and expands the 1995 Gun Free School Zone Act to cover people with carry permits, and AB 1014, that allows family members to obtain restraining orders that temporarily prohibit gun ownership for relatives who “they believe” might commit a violent act.
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Of the three, the restraining order measure may be the one to watch. That kind of legislation can open the door for abuse, and state Second Amendment activists as well as the courts will need to pay very close attention to this possibility.
Down in the Lone Star State, the notion of people walking around with a .45 on their hip may seem real western, but in states all over the country, it hasn’t created widespread problems.
While people may celebrate the arrival of open carry in Texas, they will be less likely to look favorably upon the announcement that a handful of New York lawmakers from Brooklyn are looking to add restrictions on the purchase of ammunition.
According to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, the legislation is designed to “place a strict limit on the number of bullets a gun owner could purchase over a 90-day time period, and prevent gun dealers from selling ammunition for a firearm to anyone unauthorized to have such a weapon.” The legislation is sponsored by state Sen. Roxanne Persaud and Assemblywoman Jo Ann Simon. Critics are also suggesting that neither lawmaker ever engaged in a skeet or trap match, participated in Sporting Clays or a DCM-style match, Action Pistol, or even hunted mourning doves.
These New Yorkers would likely be horrified to visit, say, El Paso or Alpine in six months and find some Texan strolling down a sidewalk or across a plaza with a visible sidearm. They might faint dead away if they attended a gun rights rally in Washington, Oregon or Idaho, for example, where visible firearms are fairly common, and nobody suffers so much as a scratch.
On the other hand, anti-gunners feel more at home in the illusory environment of an “expanded gun-free zone,” right up to the point when they discover that criminals, crazy people and terrorists don’t pay attention to such measures.
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