Below is a Brady Campaign email, concerning California’s AB1810, which would impose a registration scheme upon California’s law abiding citizens – while failing to affect criminals:
URGENT: Help Law Enforcement Track Down Armed Criminals
Urge the Senate Public Safety Committee to Pass AB 1810
Dear California Brady Campaign Member,
On Tuesday, June 29, the Senate Public Safety Committee will consider important legislation, AB 1810, to help law enforcement track down armed criminals and solve gun crimes. AB 1810 would require the retention of purchase and transfer records of all firearms in California.
Thanks in part to your emails and phone calls, AB 1810 passed the State Assembly earlier this month. Now we need your help to pass it in the State Senate.
Email the Senate Public Safety Committee:
“Pass AB 1810: Help Law Enforcement Track Down Armed Criminals and Solve Gun Crimes.”
Currently, only handgun purchase and transfer records are retained by the California Department of Justice. This mandatory destruction of long gun records hampers law enforcement efforts to disarm felons, issue domestic violence warrants, and resolve gun crimes. Help us close this dangerous loophole now!
Data from the California Department of Justice shows that over half the guns recovered from armed and prohibited persons are long guns. AB 1810 would require the preservation of records for long guns sold or transferred after July 1, 2012.
Please help us pass this bill!
President, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
Dallas M. Stout, Psy.D.
President, California Brady Campaign Chapters
The Brady Campaign’s email suggests that requiring retention of long gun purchase records would somehow help law enforcement to “disarm felons, issue domestic violence warrants, and resolve gun crimes,” and that the absence of such a registration scheme is a “loophole.” Neither of those propositions is true.
The base idea, that tracking lawful gun purchases will help to fight unlawful gun use, has been thoroughly disproven in this county and others. The simple fact is that criminals don’t buy their guns lawfully. Instead, they steal guns, buy smuggled guns, manufacture their own guns, and otherwise ignore every law intended to keep guns out of their hands. This should not be surprising, as a criminal who is willing to commit murder, robbery, or any other serious crime will logically be willing to break a less-severely-punished law such as illegal gun possession. Since criminals don’t tend to lawfully buy or register their guns, such records don’t help law enforcement to know when a criminal is in possession of a gun, nor do they help law enforcement to track a recovered gun to the criminal who used that gun.
Instead of being useful for crime prevention and detection, gun registration schemes simply create a very real potential for abuses of governmental power. Indeed, anti gun rights groups push for gun registration because such registration allows the government to identify individuals who own guns, so that those registered gun can later be wrongfully confiscated.
Balancing the virtually non-existent benefits of gun registration against the dangers to the gun rights of law abiding citizens and the waste of taxpayer money, schemes such as California’s AB1810 simply cannot be justified.
My thanks to Anders for pointing out this Brady Campaign propaganda about long gun registration.