Our California-based lobbying sibling, the Liberal Gun Owners Association, has issued the following press release and letter to California Gov. Brown regarding AB 1014, the “gun restraining order” bill:  (h/t senorgrand)

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Liberal Gun Owners Call on Governor Brown to Veto Potentially Deadly Gun Bill

OAKLAND, September 2, 2014 – Today, the Liberal Gun Owners Association (LGOA) called upon California Governor Jerry Brown to veto AB 1014 (Skinner), a bill that establishes a “gun restraining order” in response to the Isla Vista shooting. 

“This unconstitutional, unaffordable, unproven and unworkable bill could cause the very tragedies it is meant to prevent,” said LGOA President Eric Wooten. “Thirty years of a failed war on drugs should have taught us that instead of punishing people for their human frailties, we have a duty to help them.”

AB 1014 provides an enormous disincentive for gun owners (or those merely considering gun ownership) to seek professional or familial help by criminalizing mental and substance-abuse problems, forcing Californians to choose between their right to confidential medical treatment and their other civil liberties. 

AB1014 is modeled on a Connecticut law that was in place before the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting took place. That law couldn’t prevent that tragedy and may have contributed the self-imposed isolation of the Lanza family.

“Half of the Isla Vista murder victims didn’t die from gunfire. The only thing that would have stopped that event from happening was for a troubled young man to get the treatment he so obviously needed long before he committed those murders,” said Wooten. “This bill makes troubled gun owners more isolated, exacerbating the problem it is meant to address.”

The Liberal Gun Owners Association (LGOA) is a California nonprofit advocating for the rights of gun owners, from a leftist perspective. For more information, see LGOA.org or our affiliated comrades at theliberalgunclub.org.

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Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.
State Capitol, Suite 1173
Sacramento, CA 95814
Fax: (916) 558-3160
September 1, 2014

RE: AB 1014 (Skinner) 
Position: OPPOSE

Dear Governor Brown, 

You have the well-earned reputation for deliberative and farsighted leadership, and I firmly believe if you consider the larger ramifications of AB 1014 (Skinner), you will veto this dangerous bill.

In addition to being unconstitutional, unaffordable, unproven and unworkable, this bill could cause the very tragedies it is meant to prevent.

AB 1014 provides an enormous disincentive for gun owners (or those merely considering gun ownership) to seek professional or familial help by criminalizing mental and substance-abuse problems, thereby pushing further into darkness those who need help the most.

This bill forces citizens to choose between their right to confidential medical treatment and their other civil liberties. Thirty years of a failed war on drugs should have taught us that instead of punishing people for their human frailties, we have a duty to help them.

AB1014 is modeled on Connecticut law that was in place before the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting took place. Maybe that law didn’t cause the Lanzas to become the isolated household of gun owners they were, but it certainly didn’t get them the help they so obviously needed. It also failed to take guns out of the hands of a dangerous individual.

The proponents of AB 1014 will tell you that it is meant to stop another tragedy like the one that occurred in Isla Vista, but half of those murder victims didn’t die from gunfire. The only thing that would have stopped that event from happening was for a troubled young man to get the treatment he so obviously needed long before he committed those murders.

The financial impact this bill will have on an already over-burdened court system is no minor issue either.

Despite recent funding improvements, domestic-violence cases and restraining orders are still suffering because of an overworked court system. Long lines, court employees unable to help victims complete complicated forms, processing delays and elimination of court reporters have all adversely affected these cases.

This bill adds significant burdens to the court system without any additional funding, meaning it could further jeopardize the safety of domestic-violence victims.

Instead of focusing efforts on the chronic root causes of social ills, AB1014 is a giant step backward for both civil liberties and mental-health policy.

We strongly urge you to veto this dangerous bill.

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