The Spectacle Blog

More on Colorado Gun Laws

By on 3.20.13 | 9:53PM

Living in Colorado, I have a little more information than Luca does about what just happened here.

Luca is absolutely right that sheriffs here, notably my friend John Cooke of Weld County, have announced that they will not attempt to enforce the magazine ban bill. But Luca is, sadly, not right to say that unenforceability is the law's biggest flaw.

The "high-capacity" (which means standard capacity most of the time) magazine ban includes not just magazines over 15 rounds, but magazines which are "designed to be readily converted" into having a capacity over 15 rounds.

Many magazines, including standard magazines for Glock handguns (which I'm told are the most popular handguns in the US), have a removable metal plate at the bottom used both for cleaning and for adding a small extender which allows for a few extra bullets, in Glock's case taking the magazine from 15 rounds to 19 rounds.

In other words, the magazine law bans the sale of standard 15-round Glock magazines, and other similar magazines, making a newly purchased Glock nothng more than a paperweight for someone who does not already own the magazines.

Furthermore, while the horrendous "background check" law, which is really an anti-transfer law, has provisions for the transfer of guns in limited circumstances without a background check, such as gifts from parents to children or grandparents to grandchildren (but not loans of guns among those same people!), the magazine ban has no such provision.

Therefore, you may keep a gun with a magazine of more than 15 rounds (or which is designed to be readily converted to more than 15 rounds) if you own it before July 1st. And you may give the gun to your son but you may not give him the magazine. So if you want your son or grandson to own any magazines which the law covers, you must give them to him before July 1st.

One must wonder whether the Democrat drafters of this bill are stupid or whether they knew exactly what they were doing.

Obviously this is unenforceable, and that is a big flaw, but on the other hand it is a good thing that such a stupid, ineffectual law is unenforceable and will go substantially unenforced.

By the way, how's this for contrast from our neighboring state?

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