Despite a similar law being rejected a couple of years back California Governor Newsom moves to bar the purchase of ammunition to those who can not pass a background check. The ballot initiative has been put forward in San Francisco. Essentially those buying ammunition would be subject to the same background check criteria as those purchasing a firearm. To some this would appear to be a progressive add on to stemming high profile murders and mass killings. With approximately 270 million firearms in circulation and with the police and law enforcement carrying @ 900,000 a logical step would be the restriction of ammunition to civilians. However there is another side to the coin which suggests the initiative may fail again.
Gun laws in California are strict and likely that anyone purchasing a firearm would have already successfully negotiated a background check. Would this create a black market and drive ammo sales underground. Is it not likely that anyone who wants ammunition will secure by fair means or foul i.e. how easy is it to circumnavigate the law should it be passed. What effect will it have on online sales of ammunition that are shipped.
The governor would also like to bring in more stringent background check policy for those with convictions. This may be construed as those that have committed felonies and those covered within the Gun Control Act of 1968 prompted by the assassination of JFK. However herein lies a bone of contention in that those individuals who are non violent criminals (eg tax evasion, narcotics, fraud and so on) lose their rights to gun ownership. Therefore is it likely that those with misdemeanors may well have to relinquish their firearms.
It will require 366,000 signatures to see the initiative to ballot, so this may well be a done deal. However will the initiative increase safety. Will any gun owner in California simply travel across state borders to either Arizona or Nevada where there is no background check or go online.