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Poll: Should California Ban the 'Bullet Button?'

The bullet button gets around the state law banning semi-automatic guns and those with removable magazines.

Earlier this week, California Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/San Mateo) was given the Vanguard Award for "Elected Official of the Year" for his work in social justice.

We also reported that one of the biggest efforts Yee is working on is a Senate bill to ban the "bullet button" in California.

That certainly got people talking.

In California, an "assault weapon" is defined as a semi-automatic rifle with both a pistol grip and a detachable magazine, among other features. A "bullet button" is designed to replace a normal magazine release button with a recessed button that can only be accessed through the use of a tool—such as the tip of a bullet.

The California Department of Justice (CA DOJ) declared that semi-automatic rifles utilizing a bullet button are considered to be "fixed magazine" rifles, and therefore legal under the state's assault weapon ban. This was most recently reaffirmed in April of 2011 in the case of Haynie vs. Pleasanton, wherin the CA DOJ said that the arrest of an individual with such a rifle was without cause, as such a rifle is legal.

See the full text of 'Haynie vs. Pleasanton' in the PDF attached to this article.

Yee disagrees. Though the bullet button still slows down a person's ability to change magazines, Yee argues that it should still be banned for safety reasons, calling assault weapons and bullet buttons "public nuisances."

People all over the state - and across the country - feel passionately about the issue of bans on assault weapons and bullet buttons.

Many say such a ban is useless; that people who want to kill will find a way, and that whether or not bullet buttons and semi-automatic assault weapons are banned won't make a difference. Therefore, the ban would only punish law-abiding citizens who use guns and bullet buttons safely.

Others say, tragedies like the Aurora, Colo. movie theater shooting - which Yee has been using as a reason to push the bill even harder lately - are proof that more gun control is needed in this country.

Patch wants to know your opinion.

Let's continue the conversation. Please vote in our poll below, and feel free to share your thoughts and explain your vote in the comments section below.

Mary Wright August 05, 2012 at 10:08 PM
The guns we own as law abiding citizens are both legal and safe. The proposed legislation would amount to 1) a taking of property 2) a violation of our second amendmen rights and, if "modified" result in an UNSAFE weapon. When legislators start trying to redesign wewapons, run for cover. We all know what the politics are here: To disarm law abiding citizens with no plan to disarm the bad guys who will keep their guns and we will become defenseless. Look at those great gun free zones like Chicago, the murder capital of America and other cities. Compare them to places where citizens can defend themselves. You really think a bad guy gives a twit about possessing a gun with a bullet button? Heck no. Purposeful effort by the Dems to disarm the citizens parading as regulation. Shame on them.
Mary Wright August 05, 2012 at 10:09 PM
Oh yeah, one more thing: Why did you reset the poll? Numbers agaisnt the ban too overwhelming? Hoping to "juice" the results? Laughable. Transparent tactics here by the press.
Chase Dine Mitchell Buchanan August 05, 2012 at 11:38 PM
Senator Yee's SB 249 is futile for two reasons. The first is that it will not save any lives or prevent any crimes, because murderers and other violent criminals do not use rifles. They use more easily concealable weapons such as knives and small pistols. The second reason is that the Supreme Court has ruled that people have the right to own commonly used weapons such as autoloading rifles. Therefore, if this bill is passed, it will immediately succumb to civil suits.
Anthony August 06, 2012 at 06:33 PM
Gun control laws are too often brought to us out of fear not from fact as statistics just do not support the effectiveness of these laws.We as a society need not to be so quick to stymie our civil rights.Would any of us support a ban or be willing to significantly restrict our freedom of speech or our freedom of religion because someone out of fear has a hunch that they may be dangerous?I think not.
Alan Smith August 10, 2012 at 06:47 AM
Why does senator Yee waste our tax dollars seeking to put in more laws and restrictions that only apply to law abiding citizens? Since when do criminal obey gun laws? Duh!

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