November 2004

Monday, November 1st, 2004

In California, CCRKBA termed
state Attorney General Bill Lockyer’s
latest gun control scheme a “fanatic
fantasy.” Lockyer wants to require
all handgun ammunition sold in the
Golden State to be “branded” with
a microscopic code that ostensibly
would help identify its origin and purchaser.
His proposal would require
each round of handgun ammunition
to have a tiny serial number etched
into its surface. This would apply
to ammunition possessed in public,
sold or imported into the state. The
law would have a sunset provision.
CCRKBA Executive Director said it
was a “harebrained” scheme. Waldron
noted that Lockyer recently
“supported a bill that would have
required retailers to take a fingerprint
from everyone purchasing ammunition,
but Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger
wisely vetoed that idea.”
.
In Washington, D.C., the United
States Supreme Court refused early
last month to review a lower court
decision allowing a California county
to ban gun shows at its fairgrounds.
The justices turned away an appeal of
a 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decision
upholding an Alameda County
ordinance banning possession of
firearms on municipal property. The
9th Circuit had upheld the ordinance
on grounds that gun enthusiasts
had neither a First Amendment nor
Second Amendment right to possess
weapons for sale on county
property. Last year, Marin County
passed an ordinance prohibiting
the possession of firearms and ammunition
on county property. That
law put an end to a gun show that
been held annually at Marin Center
for nearly two decades. Observers
believe the U.S. Supreme Court’s
refusal to review the case could lead
to a number of similar ordinances
across California. Los Angeles and
San Mateo counties already have
adopted similar measures.
In Phoenix, Arizona, several hundred
citizens last month celebrated
the 10th anniversary of the state’s
concealed weapons law during a
special banquet organized for the
occasion by pro-gun publisher
Alan Korwin. Charles Heller of Liberty
Watch Radio was master of
ceremonies. Three men and two
women who actually have been
involved in defensive gun use were
named winners of the Human Right
of Self-Defense Award. It also was
presented to Patti Nolan, the Arizona
legislator who spearheaded enactment
of the law. CCRKBA Chairman
Alan M. Gottlieb told the gathering
that Arizona citizens have shown
beyond doubt that law-abiding civilians
carrying guns are not and never
have been a threat to public safety.
Other speakers included Eric Croft,
an Alaska legislator who authored
his state’s CCW law, NRA First Vice
President Sandra Froman, and Ted
Deeds of the Law Enforcement Alliance
of America.
About 1.6 percent of applications
for gun purchases were rejected last
year through the National Instant
Criminal Background Check System
(NICS), according to figures released
by the U.S. Department of Justice
(DOJ). The number of rejections
was slightly below the 2002 level
and continued a decline seen in
recent years in the denial rate, the
Bureau of Justice stated in a report.
The bureau attributed the decline to
more extensive background checks,
involving more records and an
increased number of databases –
giving pause to potential purchasers
who know they would be prohibited
from legally getting their hands on a
gun. The report said the top reason
for rejections was a felony conviction
or indictment. Another common reason
for denial of an application was
a domestic violence misdemeanor
conviction or restraining order.
Overall, 126,000 of the approximately
7.8 million applications for guns in
2003 were blocked, according to the
report.