Saldana proposes curbs on gun 'open carry' Alarmed by the growing “open carry” movement in San Diego
and statewide, Assemblywoman Lori Saldana has introduced legislation that would prohibit Californians from packing unloaded guns in plain sight. “Guns are an intimidating presence,” the San Diego Democrat
said. “The average citizen can’t tell the good guys from the bad guys.”
The measure, Assembly Bill 1934, would not change existing law that allows citizens to carry concealed weapons.
Sam Paredes. executive director of Gun Owners of California
, said the open carry movement has been sparked by frustration over the inability to secure permits for concealed weapons.
“The Second Amendment
provides the right to bear arms, not just in the home,” Paredes said. “They’re using the First Amendment to make a statement about the Second Amendment.”
Open carry advocates have displayed weapons along Pacific Beach and elsewhere in the San Diego region in demonstrations, raising concerns among some citizens and drawing police to investigate, Saldana said.
California law permits citizens to display guns as long as the weapons are unloaded. However, ammunition can be on one hip while a pistol is holstered on the other leg, she said.
Saldana displayed a video showing a magazine slipping into a gun within two seconds. She says that creates major safety issues.
The legislation is supported by the California Police Chiefs Association, which argues that public display of weapons creates safety issues and diverts officers from their regular patrols.
The bill will get its first test April 20 in the Assembly Public Safety Committee. Its chairman, Tom Ammiano
, D-San Francisco
, has come out in favor of the measure.