Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has ordered all gun stores in the county to close, declaring that the retailers who’ve seen crowds of customers over the past week are not essential business and must shut down during the city’s shelter-in-place order.
Fox LA had an interview with the sheriff Tuesday morning, in which Villanueva claimed to be a supporter of the Second Amendment, but is so concerned about new gun owners having accidents with their firearms that he decided the stores must close.
“We will be closing them, they are not an essential function,” Villanueva said. “I’m a supporter of the 2nd amendment, I’m a gun owner myself, but now you have the mixture of people that are not formerly gun owners and you have a lot more people at home and anytime you introduce a firearm in a home, from what I understand from CDC studies, it increases fourfold the chance that someone is gonna get shot.”
With all due respect to the sheriff, he’s full of it. The Second Amendment protects the right of the people to keep and bear arms. It doesn’t protect the right of people who’ve owned guns their entire life, or the people who live by themselves. It’s a right of all the people, and Villanueva is denying that right to millions of residents who may have rationally and reasonably decided over the past few days to become a gun owner for the first time.
Reporter Bill Melugin with Fox LA reported Tuesday afternoon that Villanueva is so serious about shutting down the gun stores that he’s sending deputies out to each location to ensure compliance.
The Sheriff told me he is a gun owner himself, supports 2nd amendment, but believes too many first time buyers are panicking and bringing guns into homes where people are locked down, which he believes is recipe for disaster with potential accidental shootings. @FOXLA
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) March 24, 2020
Melugin’s first follow up question to Villanueva should have been, “How exactly do you support the Second Amendment?”
Villanueva oversees the issuing of concealed carry licenses in Los Angeles County. According to NRA-ILA, in 2017, there were fewer than 200 concealed carry licenses in the county, which is home to more than 10-million people. Does that sound supportive of the right to bear arms to you?
And how exactly is Villanueva supporting the Second Amendment rights of residents when he says that concern over accidental discharges means no one should be allowed to purchase a firearm or ammunition for the foreseeable future? Instead of banning Los Angelenos from legally acquiring firearms, Villanueva should be working with groups like the NRA, NSSF, and US Concealed Carry Association, who are all using their platforms to promote basic gun safety for first time gun owners at the moment. Education is key, but Villanueva’s decided on abstinence instead. It is a shameful decision that will only serve to stoke fear and panic at the expense of our constitutional rights.