California leads the way to a 28th amendment for gun safety 

September 8, 2023 /

In June, Governor Gavin Newsom proposed a 28th amendment to the constitution in regard to gun safety. To pass the amendment, an Article 5 convention is needed to propose the change to the Constitution. The release explains that California is the first state to do this with a joint resolution. 

The resolution was introduced by California State Senator Aisha Wahab and Assemblymember Reggie Jones-Sawyer, and on Wednesday, the California State Senate approved the resolution. In order for the amendment to be adopted to the constitution, 33 states need to pass a resolution. 

According to a release in June, the amendment would allow local governments to do the following:

  • Raise the federal minimum age to purchase a firearm from 18 to 21;
  • Mandate universal background checks to prevent truly dangerous people from purchasing a gun that could be used in a crime
  • Institute a reasonable waiting period for all gun purchases 
  • Bar civilian purchase of assault weapons that serve no other purpose than to kill as many people as possible in a short amount of time

The same release originally announcing the amendment stated that 110 Americans lose their lives to gun violence every day. The release also cited the Giffords Law Center, stating that California is ranked number 1 in gun safety and, at the time, had a 37 percent lower rate of gun violence deaths than the national average. At the time of this article, the percentage is now 39 percent lower than the national average. The report also ranks California as the 43rd lowest state for gun violence.

In August, Newsom, when explaining the need for stricter gun laws, said that more people would die from gun violence than did in the terrorist attack on September 11th. 

“In the time it will take to pass our Right to Safety Resolution calling for a constitutional convention, more Americans will lose their lives to gun violence than were killed on September 11,” said Governor Newsom in an August press release. “How many more lives must be lost before we act? In California, with the help of the Legislature, we are providing a path to a safer America.”

Wahab also spoke about the need for stricter gun safety in the August release. 

“As someone who values both the Second Amendment and has personally experienced the impact of gun violence, I am proud to partner with Governor Gavin Newsom on the Right to Safety Resolution,” said Wahab in the August release. “Together, we are advocating for rational and responsible measures regarding firearms regulations, standing up for the memory of all individuals who have lost their lives to, or been deeply affected by, the tragic consequences of gun violence.”

After the resolution was passed, Newsom stated that the nation is one step closer to safer communities. 

“2,574. That’s how many Americans are estimated to have been killed by gun violence since the Right to Safety Resolution was introduced just three weeks ago. Enough. Today, we are one step closer to safer communities in all 50 states,” said Newsom in a release on Wednesday. 

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JaNell Gore

Ja'Nell Gore is a student at Cal State Bakersfield. In addition to writing for Kern Sol News she is a poet who loves any chance she has to perform and be with her community.