Earlier this week, California Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/San Mateo) was given the Vanguard Award for "Elected Official of the Year" for his work in social justice.
We also reported that one of the biggest efforts Yee is working on currently is a Senate bill to ban the "bullet button" for semi-automatic rifles in California.
That certainly got people talking.
In California, an "assault weapon" is defined as a semi-automatic rifle with both a pistol grip and a detachable magazine, among other features.
A "bullet button" is designed to replace a normal magazine release button with a recessed button that can only be accessed through the use of a tool—such as the tip of a bullet.
The California Department of Justice (CA DOJ) declared that semi-automatic rifles utilizing a bullet button are considered to be "fixed magazine" rifles, and therefore legal under the state's assault weapon ban.
This was most recently reaffirmed in April of 2011 in the case of Haynie vs. Pleasanton, wherin the CA DOJ said that the arrest of an individual with such a rifle was without cause, as such a rifle is legal.
See the full text of 'Haynie vs. Pleasanton' in the PDF attached to this article.
Yee disagrees. Though the bullet button slows down a person's ability to change magazines, Yee argues that it should still be banned for safety reasons, calling assault weapons and bullet buttons "public nuisances."
People all over the state - and across the country - feel passionately about the issue of bans on assault weapons and bullet buttons.
Many say such a ban is useless; that people who want to kill will find a way, and that whether or not bullet buttons and semi-automatic assault weapons are banned won't make a difference. Therefore, the ban would only punish law-abiding citizens who use guns and bullet buttons safely.
Others say, tragedies like the Aurora, Colo. movie theater shooting - which Yee has been using as a reason to push the bill even harder lately - are proof that more gun control is needed in this country.
Patch wants to know - what do you think?
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