‘This Does Absolutely Nothing’: Sheriffs Vow Not to Enforce New Ten-Capacity Gun Law

For Oregonians hoping to buy gun magazines that can hold nearly a dozen rounds, there is bad news. On the other hand, some sheriffs in the state aren’t keen to crack down on capacity.

As noted by Boise State Public Radio, voters in Oregon have said “yes” to Measure 114.

[The initiative] has two main components. First, to buy a gun, a person [will] need to get a new permit from a local law enforcement agency requiring a criminal background check…in addition to the (federal) one already required to purchase a gun.

And would-be law-abiding murderers will get convinced not to slaughter the innocent — a mandated class will inform them that that hurts people:

Safety courses [will] teach safe storage and handling and how suicide and homicide affect communities.

The five-year permit, to be clear, is “per person, not per gun.”

Second, any magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition [is] banned. This [will] only apply going forward. People who currently own such magazines [will] be able to keep them though not use them. Guns that have built-in magazines holding more than 10 rounds [now] have to be modified in order to be legally transported or used.

Not everyone in law enforcement is fond of the optimistically-named Reduction of Gun Violence Act. Therefore, reports Fox News, many officials won’t be enforcing it.

[A]t least five county sheriffs say they will not enforce all or parts of the law, and they are focusing their opposition on language that limits magazine capacity. They argue that the provision infringes on Second Amendment rights, ignores real problems associated with gun violence in the state and will drain already-depleted law enforcement resources.

According to Union County Sheriff Cody Bowen, the law amounts to a lot of nothing:

“The biggest thing is this does absolutely nothing to address the problem. The problem that we have is not…magazine capacity. It’s not background checks. It’s a problem with mental health awareness. It’s a problem with behavior health illness. Our society as a whole is a bigger problem rather than saying that, you know, the guns are killing people.”

The capacity restriction, he says, is “an infringement on our Second Amendment, you know, our right to keep and bear arms.”

And it won’t pop a cap into crime:

“If you believe that this…is going to cut the school shootings down, or cut the gun violence down, you’re sadly mistaken. But what has proven [to work] time and time again is…supporting your law enforcement, responsible gun ownership, teaching our children at a younger age respect for human life. That’s what we need to fall back on.”

Linn County Sheriff Michelle Duncan feels similarly. She made such clear in a November 9th Facebook post:

“I want to send a clear message to Linn County residents that the Linn County Sheriff’s Office is NOT going to be enforcing magazine capacity limits. … I want to ensure anything we do or don’t do will not hinder gun owners’ rights to purchase firearms…”

Michelle is hopeful “that the passing of this measure will result in an immediate lawsuit against it, as it should.”

Count in Malheur County Sheriff Brian Wolfe, as well as Jefferson County Sheriff Jason Pollock — who called 114 “pure anti-gun politics.”

The legislation seems based on a peculiar premise: Those unfazed by the law prohibiting murder will be sufficiently shaken to their core by an ordinance regulating round count. Might the rule have been all Oregon needed all this time? We shall soon see.

But assuming common sense is correct, make two columns — the first for Criminals, the other for Victims. Now pass all the gun laws you want; and apply their impact only to the second column. Afterward, which group has the advantage?

Or maybe that sense isn’t so common. John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, has celebrated success thanks to the new law. From

“The people of Oregon have spoken, and their message is clear: They want more common-sense measures to keep guns out of the wrong hands, and they want high-capacity magazines out of the marketplace. Lawmakers who are still taking their cues from the gun lobby need to listen to the voters and do their part to prevent gun violence.”

Surely one group is in especially fervent favor of 114’s enforcement: bad guys whose bodies can safely absorb ten bullets but not eleven. If any such good guys exist, they’ll nonetheless likely be facing 15+1 firearms.


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