Tuesday, August 9, 2011

ReasonTV On The Debate Over Open Carry In California

ReasonTV today released an excellent video on the debate over unloaded open carry in California. It features Assemblyman Anthony Portatino (D-Pasadena) who wants to outlaw it, activist Sam Wolank who argues cogently for it, and law professor and blogger Eugene Volokh who serves to give some of the background on the banning of open carry from the 19th century.

Interesting enough, loaded open carry was legal in California until 1967. That was when then-Governor Ronald Reagan signed the Mulford Law which outlawed it. The outlawing of loaded open carry was in response to armed Black Panthers patrolling black neighborhoods while armed. With all due respect to the late Ronald Reagan, this was not his finest hour.

The renewed impetus for this law was the attempted murder of Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-AZ). However, as Professor Volokh notes, it doesn't make good sense to craft comprehensive legislation that deals with rare situations. Obviously, this has not stopped bills like AB144 and its proponent Assemblyman Portatino.


  1. I am sensing that folks are getting tired of these obvious political "games" with our rights.

    California is actually fairly "pro-gun" - but there are a few areas (larger coastal cities) where a small minority of politicians have kind of used a combination of flawed reasoning, and actual "identity politics" to further an agenda designed for the SOLE REASON of getting them reelected.

    As far as I can tell, there have been ZERO (or few) anti-gun bills passed/proposed, etc. by politicians who are termed out, or otherwise not seeking reelection.

    Essentially, they use the "gun thing" as an easy ploy to gain "public safety" votes. I would even venture to say that this political "trick" is well-known among politicians. I propose the phrase "gun-ban vote whore" to describe these actors.

  2. What's needed, of course, is a single, statewide standard for issuance of CCW, based on the criminal history (or lack thereof) of the gunowner, not his county of residence or political views of his Sheriff.

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