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Newsletter: June 8


Judge Overturns California Assault Weapons Ban

A federal pro-gun rights judge overturned California’s 30-year assault weapons ban calling it a “failed experiment” and stating that the ban is a violation of the Second Amendment.  He then compared an AR-15 to a Swiss Army knife as popular and a perfect weapon for home or homeland defense.  The judge was appointed by George W. Bush.   His ruling was issued on Gun Violence Awareness day, so we suspect he wasn’t wearing orange.  

A Duke University law professor noted that the Las Vegas shooter “didn’t use knives to rain down fire on a concert.”   Fred Guttenberg, whose 14-year-old daughter Jaime was shot and killed in the Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, denounced the judge’s ruling stating “My daughter’s in a cemetery … because a Swiss Army knife was not used.  Because it was an AR-15.  If a Swiss Army knife was used, my daughter and most of the other kids and adults would be alive today.”

California will be appealing the decision.  Excellent articles were in the Washington Post and the New York Times.  These may be behind paywalls. 


Rankings of States by Gun Laws

An article in 24/7 Wall Street discusses the Giffords rankings of each state on gun violence prevention.  Colorado ranks 15th on the strength of our gun laws, but 18th highest in gun deaths.  Why this disparity?  Likely because Colorado has a high suicide rate.  Most years, around 75% of gun deaths in Colorado are suicides. 

New Gun Buyers

The pandemic induced a surge in gun purchases, a surge that continues even now.  Not only were lots of guns being bought, but researchers at Northeastern and Harvard Universities found that approximately 1/5 of Americans who purchased guns during the surge were new gun buyers.  Of these first-time buyers, half were women, a fifth were Black and a fifth were Latino.  The Hill reported on this, as did the New York Times (may be behind paywall). 


Thank you to Your Mom’s House

Your Mom’s House (a Denver electronic music venue) hosted a fundraiser for Colorado Ceasefire last Sunday.  We were delighted to talk with the audience and with people individually about our efforts to reduce gun violence in Colorado.  Proceeds from the benefit were presented to Colorado Ceasefire Outreach and are eligible for the matching grant.  Ceasefire has been awarded a $25,000 matching grant from the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence’s Safer States Initiative. We are closing in on that mark.  Ceasefire is very grateful to those who have already contributed, but if you haven’t, now is a great time to do so.  Donations to either Outreach (tax deductible) or Legislative Action are eligible for the match.