California: A Niche Market for Gun Makers
When it comes to weapons, or even a lot of non-weapons really, California is one of the most restrictive states in the Union. If you want a butterfly knife, for example, you’ve got to break the law to get it. Sword canes, straight blades, and even miniature police batons are practically contraband. If you’re a firearms enthusiast, you’ve got to have a squeaky clean record and be prepared to walk a legal tightrope as different laws come and go at breakneck speed.
A whole slew of new restrictions have been drafted into law this year and more are coming. Here are a few of the weird and oppressive regulations California law places on gun ownership.
If you own an “assault rifle,” you can keep it, but don’t try to buy anymore because it’s against the law. The law that went into effect in 2016 looking to eliminate “bullet buttons” to stop rifle owners from possessing certain guns that were made to circumvent their so-called assault weapons ban. Of course, if you know the first thing about guns you know the term “assault weapon” doesn’t really mean anything. It’s a term that was coined in Hollywood action films that news anchors glommed on to and lawmakers eventually came to believe meant something.
The button bullet ban has opened the doors to a number of gun manufacturers looking to sell products that beat the ban. It worked out fine until they banned the bullet button. So, if you’ve got a rifle that has one, guess what… you’re a criminal.
Magazines that hold more than 10 rounds are on the chopping block now too. Owners of such magazines were told to get rid of them by July or face prosecution. That bill has been stalled by gun rights activists, but Democrats are still looking to ram it through. All the while, manufacturers of 10- mags are making a killing in CA.
Right now, merchants looking to offload their 10 round+ mags in an effort to recoup their investment.
Starting on January 1st of this year, Californians were no longer able to buy ammunition online or from a catalog. If you want to buy ammo, you’ll have to hoof it on down to your local gun shop. If gun control advocates get their way, not only will gun owners have to buy all their ammunition in person- but they also have to have a permit to buy ammo. The permit costs $50 and remains valid for four years. As you can imagine, this triggered a surge in ammo sales creating stockpiles that may- for all we know- be illegal now. This year, ammunition purchased outside of California state lines is no longer able to be legally transported into the state by the owner.
Of course, this doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of the number of gun laws that are actually on the books. The amount of confusion among law-abiding gun owners is substantial.
Recently, when gun owners were told to register their “assault rifles,” the website they were meant to go to broke down during the entire registration window. This made it impossible for gun owners to comply- and they have been officially warned.
NRA lawyers are moving to protect them, but the territory is exceedingly murky. In the meantime, niche gun and gun part manufacturers are making a killing selling products that promise to skirt the law.
This gray market isn’t going to get any clearer any time soon. As long as the state of California tries to plug up all the holes in their anti-gun laws, business will continue to boom for these niche manufacturers.
~ National Gun News