California Opens New Front In Its War On Gun Shows

A bill that would block gun shows from taking place at the Del Mar Fairgrounds outside of San Diego cleared its last legislative hurdle and is now on its way to Governor Gavin Newsom in the latest attempt by anti-gun activists to end gun shows throughout the state of California.


Assemblyman Todd Gloria’s bill would prohibit the sale of firearms or ammunition at the fairgrounds, which has hosted the Crossroads of the West gun shows for decades. Gun control activists actually convinced the board to block gun shows, but a federal judge in California put a halt to the board’s decision.

A judge issued a preliminary injunction June 19 putting a pause on the Del Mar Fair Board’s temporary ban on gun shows at the fairgrounds. According to the Crossroads website the next scheduled show at Del Mar will be September 28 and 29, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

Federal District Court Judge Cathy Bencivengo’s injunction prohibited the board from continuing its ban on the show, which started on the first of this year, until a lawsuit filed by gun show operators was settled.

The board voted in September to put the shows on hold until 2020 while it reviewed its policy on gun shows. The policy changes being considered included an all-out ban, a gun sale ban and an educational-only gun show.

Now Governor Gavin Newsom could institute a ban via state legislation, which would lead to another round of litigation, all because gun control activists in California want to dismantle the culture of lawful gun ownership in the state. Assemblyman Gloria, however, claims it’s all about safety.
“This bill is about offering more than thoughts and prayers,” said Gloria in a news release. “It’s about policy and action and listening to the communities around the Fairgrounds who no longer want these events taking place. In California, we value people over guns and this bill makes that clear.”
If you’re detecting a whiff of bovine excrement in the air, it’s likely from Gloria’s press release and not from the livestock barns at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Ending gun shows at Del Mar or the Cow Palace outside of San Francisco (another target of anti-gun activists) won’t do a single thing to make anybody any safer. Every firearm sold at a gun show in California is subject to a background check and a 10-day waiting period. Nobody’s walking in with cash and walking out with a gun. Gun control advocates have “closed the gun show loophole” in California, yet they still hate gun shows. It’s not about public safety, or the attempt to gain some sort of moral high ground by claiming to value “people over guns” (as if the same isn’t true for every person who owns a gun for self-defense). This is about trying to destroy the culture of lawful gun ownership. The fewer legal gun owners there are, the easier it is to keep restricting the right down to nothingness.
If Gavin Newsom does sign this bill or allow it to become law, expect a court challenge to soon follow, and not just on 2nd Amendment grounds. There’s a 1st Amendment argument to be made in favor of gun shows as well, and even in the 9th circuit, gun owners and groups like the California Rifle and Pistol Association have seen some courtroom success stories. In other words, if this bill becomes law it’ll be the real beginning, not the end of this story.

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