The City of Del Mar in California isn’t a fan of guns, apparently. I know that despite being in Georgia, for two reasons. One, it’s California. My default on California is always anti-gun until proven otherwise. The other is because of their recent antics toward the Crossroads of the West Gun Show.
You see, the city wants to block the show from using a public fairgrounds.
The city of Del Mar is asking the directors of the state-owned fairgrounds to end the popular Crossroads of the West Gun Show that is held there five times a year.
Members of the City Council also are appealing to 78th District Assemblyman Todd Gloria, D- Mission Hills, and state Sen. Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, to craft legislation that would prohibit gun shows at the facility.
The plea to discontinue the show, part of a broader resolution the council approved Monday calling for “responsible gun safety regulations,” comes just days before a worldwide demonstration against gun violence prompted by last month’s deadly school shooting in Parkland, Fla.
“What’s really at the heart of this is the national trauma,” said Mayor Dwight Worden, referring to the string of school shootings, including the one in Parkland, where a troubled former student killed 17 people.
Gun shows may be legal, Worden said, but cities should be able to ban them the same way they ban pornography and cigarettes in public places.
The fairgrounds are owned by the state and overseen by the 22nd District Agriculture Assn., which has a board of directors with nine members appointed by the governor.
So far, the board has given no indication it might cancel the show’s contract, which for now extends through 2018.
“We should strongly suggest that the contract not be renewed, or do whatever we can to assure that we not have a gun show at the fairgrounds,” Councilman Dave Druker said.
Behold the slippery slope argument.
While I don’t want to be around porn or smoking in public, it seemed inevitable that someone would use that as justification to remove something else. In this case, gun shows.
There are differences, however. You see, there are legitimate public health reasons to ban smoking in public. For one, second-hand smoke causes problems, which means I risk lung cancer because of someone else’s smoking.
Similarly, a case can be made that exposing young people to porn–something that may happen in public–causes psychological problems and thus banning it from public spaces provides a tangible health benefit.
Banning gun shows, however, does no such thing. While anti-gunners have claimed access to guns is a public safety issue, there’s no evidence to suggest the mere presence of guns is a problem. Instead, it’s the use of them which may become a problem. Well, luckily for everyone, the use of firearms in public is already covered under existing laws, so no one needs to worry.
The thing is, it’s not really about the gun show itself. It’s about making it difficult on potential gun buyers. It’s about making it difficult on gun dealers. It’s about making the process so difficult that fewer people will even attempt it.
And that’s why it’s pathetic.