By John Peterson
America is now seeing a serious trend of renewed gun-control efforts being perpetuated on a compounding number of states since last October’s Las Vegas massacre and the Parkland, Florida, school shooting in February. The onslaught has spread into the state legislatures and the anti-gunners are gaining ground at an alarming rate.
A growing number of states are either in the midst of, or looking at a future of new or renewed quests at more egregious gun control than ever. Following Florida’s March 9 signing of various gun-control measures into law, here is the short list of the status of this new wave of state-level gun control:
- Oregon is in the midst of a battle of its own over what could be some of the most draconian gun control in the nation, ballot initiative Petition 43. This is in addition to the first round of knee-jerk gun-control bills being signed by its governor in early March, the first new gun law in the country since the Florida shootings. But, draconian proposals in play seek, among other things, to ban any pistol that is capable of accepting a magazine that holds more than 10 rounds (not just the magazines, the entire pistol), rifles that can accept a magazine and that have certain other “assault weapons” features, most semi-automatic shotguns, on all magazines over 10 rounds. They are proposing a 120-day time limit to either register their firearms, turn them in, destroy them, or transfer them out of state. Violators would instantly become felons. Upon detailed examination of the entire proposal filed with the Oregon Secretary of State’s office on March 19, this ballot initiative would essentially ban entire classes of firearms and the majority of self-defense firearms. It has the weight and financial resources of several anti-gun organizations, including the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence and Ceasefire. They are already in a race to get this on the ballot by July 6.
- Following the Las Vegas massacre and on the fifth anniversary of the Sandy Hook school shooting, democrats in Delaware proposed HB 300, which includes a ban on bump stocks and trigger cranks, raising the minimum age to buy a gun, as well as other gun control that passed its House in early March and is on the way through its Senate and to a governor that promises to sign that, plus attempt to ban “assault-style rifles.”
- Massachusetts passed a ban on bump stocks in November 2017, being the first state to do so. In April, we are sending a writer to the headquarters of its state-level gun rights group, Gun Owners Action League (GOAL), to get the ground truth on what could be next.
- New Jersey’s governor signed into law on January 16th a ban on bump stocks and other firearms accessories and components, with several penalties for non-compliance.
- The state of Washington is moving quickly towards a ban on bump stocks