California unable to disarm 19,700 felons and mentally ill people
SACRAMENTO — California authorities are empowered to seize weapons owned by convicted felons and people with mental illness, but staff shortages and funding cuts have left a backlog of more than 19,700 people to disarm, a law enforcement official said Tuesday.Let that sink in for a second. California, the largest state in the US (population-wise, since land doesn't need gun laws against it...), can't confiscate firearms from folks who have been declared ineligible to own them. They have registration; they know that these people own firearms; they also know these people have become ineligible, but they simply don't have the staffing to collect the guns. They collect about firearms from 2,000 newly ineligible persons a year - and roughly 3,000 more are declared ineligible.
Those gun owners have roughly 39,000 firearms, said Stephen Lindley, chief of the Bureau of Firearms for the state Department of Justice, testifying at a joint legislative hearing. His office lacks enough staff to confiscate all the weapons, which are recorded in the state's Armed Prohibited Persons database, he said.
Think about that. Senator Feinstein from California has introduced a radical, unconstitutional gun ban that would render millions of firearms and accessories for these firearms illegal. Based on no more than cosmetic or ergonomic features, guns that are presently perfectly legal to own - including antiques and war relics - would require expensive registration and classification along with machine guns.
And meanwhile, her own state can't even get guns they know are out there from people they know shouldn't have them.
They are proposing laws that will not only limit the types of firearms that you and I can purchase, but will dramatically alter how we own guns that were previously legal. Hardware will be changed; features will be changed; they expect us to give up all sorts of functionality in some Quixotic quest to reduce gun violence. All the while the very people they claim to want to keep guns away from - criminals and mentally ill - still have firearms that the state can't be bothered to remove.
Now, imagine that Feinstein gets her wildest dreams and her ban passes. Then what? We have millions of law-abiding gun owners affected; millions of weapons that would therefore need to be processed by an agency woefully understaffed (and as the story I posted yesterday out of Minnesota shows, dangerously incompetent). California doesn't have the manpower NOW; imagine a few million new guns that need to be collected and hundreds of thousands of gun owners that won't comply, forget, or otherwise don't match up on records.
Now extrapolate this to the entire country. I think "pandemonium" would be putting it kindly. Never mind that a handful of states have already thrown down the gauntlet and outright refused to comply with any new ban; even if every state were willing to help out, would there be the manpower to follow up on even a small fraction of non-compliance? And then there's the accounting - what about states with no registration? What happens when hundreds of thousands of gun owners "sell" their assault weapons and are not legally require to report?
They haven't thought this through, not by a long shot. Much like the idiotic ban in New York (which Alan Gura seems to think is "clearly unconstitutional"), this is a hastily thrown-together piece of claptrap that will serve only to punish the law-abiding for the actions of a tiny few. A tiny few, mind you, that California already cannot take guns away from even though they have every legal right to do so already.
We've said it a thousand times - enforce the existing laws - and will continue to say that until they stop proposing to limit our freedom.
That is all.