Reaction to the San Bernardino shooting that took place last December and claimed the lives of 14 people and injured 21 others has prompted state legislators to propose new California gun laws. The laws are aimed at making it more difficult for individuals to obtain weapons and hopefully help keep them out of the hands of criminals.

There are 11 bills in total being proposed, and they would require a number of changes to the status quo.

  • Owners of homemade guns would be required to register them with the state
  • The manufacture and sale of semiautomatic rifles with detachable magazines would be illegal
  • Firearms would only legally be able to be lent to specific family members
  • A research center aimed at studying firearm violence would be established

Debate regarding the Second Amendment and just what constitutes government overreach has been going back and forth for years. Proponents of laws and restrictions regarding firearms argue that by minimizing the number of people who own guns, fewer weapons will fall into the hands of criminals. Proponents typically cite statistics from other countries indicating a correlation between stricter gun control and fewer gun-related deaths to bolster their argument.

Detractors argue that stricter gun laws will only end up adversely affecting law-abiding gun owners and would do nothing to stop criminals. They say that most acts of gun violence are committed by individuals who obtain their firearms either via illegal black market sales, or steal them from the owners. By that logic, forcing law-abiding citizens to jump through additional hoops to obtain firearms doesn’t make sense.

One issue that people on both sides of the debate tend to agree on, though, is a bill that would require Californians to show ID when buying ammunition. Supported by LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and L.A. County Sheriff Jim McDonnell, the requirement to show ID before buying ammunition would allow sellers to verify that the individual is indeed legally eligible to own a firearm. After all, if one is ineligible to own a firearm, why would they need bullets?