Why should you care?
Because AB1471 is the "Microstamping of Ammunition" bill, which we have discussed here so many times that I'm not going to bother listing all of the links on this site alone.
The measure was MOST RECENTLY defeated a year ago, when it was known as AB352. It was newly released on 2/23/07 as AB1471, amended 3 times, and it was the July 11, 2007 version which was passed by the Senate.
Here is the California Assembly website containing all official documents related to this bill. The history (as of September 07, 2007) is here, and the September 6, 2007 Senate vote is here. (It passed the Senate with a 21-17 vote, with three absent, abstaining or not voting.)
Note: The High Road had this subject as a thread. Contributors seem dejected. I know I am.
Here's the introduction to the "Legislative Counsel's Digest" of this bill:
Existing law defines unsafe handguns as failing to pass certain tests, or lacking certain features, as specified.As you can see, this was passed as an extension of the pre-existing "unsafe gun" laws which have been , for the past several years, a transparent mechanism by which the liberal/socialist California legislature has managed to de facto outlaw perfectly functional firearms - mostly handguns.
This bill, the Crime Gun Identification Act of 2007, would, commencing January 1, 2010, expand the definition of "unsafe handgun" to include semiautomatic pistols that are not designed and equipped with a microscopic array of characters that identify the make, model, and serial number of the pistol, etched in 2 or more places on the interior surface or internal working parts of the pistol, and that are transferred by imprinting on each cartridge case when the firearm is fired. Those provisions would be subject to specified certification procedures by the Department of Justice regarding the use of that technology.
By expanding the definition of "unsafe handgun," the manufacture, sale, and other specified transfer of which is a crime, this bill would expand the scope of an existing crime, and thereby impose a state-mandated local program.
One example of this movement is the "Drop Safety Requirement". Every manufacturer is required to submit (at no charge) an example of each model and variant for a "Drop Safety Test". The firearm is to be dropped (if I remember the details correctly) from a height of six feet to a concrete floor, hammer-first. If the hammer falls, the gun is declared 'unsafe'. I don't recall that there is any limit to the number of times the firearm must pass this test, but I do know that any firearm subjected to this test is rendered unmarketable if only due to the dings, dents, scratches and scrapes which are inevitable in this kind of 'destruction testing.'
Other provisions in this law: semi-automatic pistols must have both a loaded round indicator and (it if has a detachable magazine) a magazine disconnect mechanism.
The new verbiage is demonstrated in Paragraph Seven of he above-cited Legislative Counsel's Digest:
(7) Commencing January 1, 2010, for all semiautomatic pistols that are not already listed on the roster pursuant to Section 12131, it is not designed and equipped with a microscopic array of characters that identify the make, model, and serial number of the pistol, etched or otherwise imprinted in two or more places on the interior surface or internal working parts of the pistol, and that are transferred by imprinting on each cartridge case when the firearm is fired, provided that the Department of Justice certifies that the technology used to create the imprint is available to more than one manufacturer unencumbered by any patent restrictions. The Attorney General may also approve a method of equal or greater reliability and effectiveness in identifying the specific serial number of a firearm from spent cartridge casings discharged by that firearm than that which is set forth in this paragraph, to be thereafter required as otherwise set forth by this paragraph where the Attorney General certifies that this new method is also unencumbered by any patent restrictions. Approval by the Attorney General shall include notice of that fact via regulations adopted by the Attorney General for purposes of implementing that method for purposes of this paragraph.(Italic emphasis in the original document.)
The microscopic array of characters required by this section shall not be considered the name of the maker, model, manufacturer's number, or other mark of identification, including any distinguishing number or mark assigned by the Department of Justice, within the meaning of Sections 12090 and 12094.
Based on purely anecdotal evidence (a September 7, 2007 article in the Southern California "Press-Enterprise", which is no longer available on the Internet ... the link is provided only to demonstrate that it was available three days before this article was written), the law is being interpreted to mean that the firing pin of the pistol would be micro-engraved to stamp identifying information on the primer of a fired cartridge.
I'll not belabor the obvious ways of circumventing this process by replacing the firing pin (considered a 'consumable part' by people who shoot a lot), or by defacing the head of the firing pin with a hone, or merely by the degradation of the micro-engraving by the natural effects of shooting during the life of the firearm. I'll only point that this is so easily negated that it has no justifiable value when considered in the context of a 'crime prevention' or even 'crime investigative' measure.
Obviously, this measure has only two goals:
- To impose such draconian and expensive restrictions on 'legal firearms' that manufactures will no longer sell to California residents, or;
- To insure that firearms which may be legally purchased in California are so expensive (as the cost of conforming to this law) that they are beyond the economic capacity of the average citizen.
No provisions are made for proving their claims; it's sufficient that they claim to be competent to provide the technology.
Of course, each firing pin (if such is the mechanism chosen) will have to be carefully matched to the firearm, and you know that if the wrong firing pin is installed in a firearm, the manufacturer will be held accountable in any California court of law.
The California legislature will not punish the 'technology' provider; these are their friends. Instead, they will go after the deep-pockets manufacturer in hopes that they can drive him out of business.
This is such an obvious gun-grabbing measure, such a transparent attempt to get around the Second Amendment, the ruling elite of California should be ashamed of themselves.
But of course, they are not.
They're actually quite pleased with themselves. Under the guise of the 21st Century's version of a "Modest Proposal", they have managed to hoist a travesty of justice upon the citizens of California, and they didn't even have to suggest that they "do it for the children".
In fact, they didn't even offer a drink before, and a cigarette after.