Frequently Asked Questions
Will current gun owners have their guns taken away from them?
No. The initiative would permit any individual currently owning an assault weapon to register it with the state, after passing a background check. The initiative also permits any person in possession of an assault weapon to sell, surrender or remove the weapon from the state, or render it inoperable, within 120 days of passage.
The same safety measures will be applied to large capacity magazines, which are defined as magazines that hold more than 10 rounds
Is this Constitutional?
Yes. Seven other states (HI, CA, NJ, NY, MA, CT, MD) and the District of Columbia already have similar laws banning assault rifles. In November 2017, the US Supreme Court rejected a challenge to Maryland’s assault weapons ban. The justices left in place a federal appeals court ruling that upheld the Maryland law banning the sale of a range of semi-automatic weapons and large capacity magazines
Isn’t the real problem mental illness? We should just restrict those gun owners.
We know that about 4% of all violent crime is committed by people who could be adjudicated mentally ill. We must help those people. (Note, however, that the NRA has not.) If we only focus on that 4%, however, we completely ignore the other 96% of those who are committing violent crimes. In addition, people who suffer from mental illness are far more likely to be victims of a crime than to commit a crime. If the NRA members were serious, they would urge Congress to place a small tax on guns that would go directly to research or development of some other way to benefit people who suffer from mental illness.
Will I be required to register all my guns?
No. Only the semiautomatic firearms described in the initiative will be affected. Firearms or ammunition described clearly in IP 43, owned at the time the act becomes effective, must be either registered with the state, sold to a private individual out of state, sold to a dealer, permanently disabled or given to law enforcement for disposal. The same safety measures will be applied to large capacity magazines, defined as a magazine that holds more than 10 rounds.
Is this divisive or controversial?
No. A Quinnipiac Poll from February 2018 showed that 67% of Americans support an outright ban on the sale of assault rifles.
How will this bill protect Oregonians?
When access to assault weapons is restricted, deaths due to mass shootings decrease. A 2014 study found that “both state and federal assault weapons bans have statistically significant and negative effects on mass shooting fatalities.” Everytown for Gun Safety, Assault Weapons Bans on Public Mass Shootings,” Applied Economics Letters 22, no. 4 (2014): 281-284.