New California Bill Allowing Gun Owner Information to Be Shared with Nonprofits Comes Under Fire

Gavin Newsom signed the bill back in September. (Photo: Gavin Newsom Facebook)

A group of gun owners in California is suing the state in federal court over a new law that allows law enforcement agencies to share personally identifying gun owner information with researchers and nonprofits.

The bill, AB 173, “requires” that “various data relating to crimes and firearms” be shared with the California Firearm Violence Research Center at UC Davis along with “any other nonprofit” accredited by the United States Department of Education.

While the bill prohibits public reports that include personally identifying information, it allows the California Department of Justice to share that information with these researchers and nonprofits.

Last week, five anonymous plaintiffs backed by the NRA-ILA sued the California Department of Justice in a San Diego federal court over AB 173. They claim the law violates their privacy and will subject them to “unwanted public attention, harassment, threats and physical violence by individuals and groups including persons in the community who are hostile to guns and gun owners.”

SEE ALSO: California Adds ‘Unfinished Frames or Receivers’ to List of Items Confiscated After Red Flag Order

Michael Schwartz, executive director of SD County Gun Owners, told local media that he fears the information will be used to advance an anti-gun agenda. But he also thinks that no matter a person’s stance on gun rights, everyone should be concerned about the attack on privacy inherent in this bill.

“That’s the biggest problem. If you’re a gun owner in California, the state of California is giving personal information like your name, your address, your place of birth, your phone number, your social security number… all this personal information to institutions that don’t have firewalls in place to protect them from the general public,” he said. “To give up your privacy to exercise a fundamental right is wrong and dangerous.”

The law, according to Schwartz, would allow researchers and nonprofits to know the type and number of guns and ammo a person purchases along with any “firearm precursor parts” purchased.

SEE ALSO: Armed California Jewelry Store Owner Halts Four Suspects During Robbery

Privacy hawks have also piled on. “Nothing in the law as written applies any stern level of oversight or punishment over misuse of the information,” said Reason’s Brian Doherty.

“With this law, anyone working in or near any academic ‘violence prevention’ work ‘with an ax to grind, or had fallen from grace, would know that some [named person] with number of guns lives at 123 Boogie Woogie Avenue in Sunnyvale,’” Roy M. Griffith told Doherty. Griffith is the legislative director of the California Rifle & Pistol Association.

The law was passed by massive majorities in both the Assembly and the Senate and signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom on Sept. 23.

Schwartz thinks the lawsuit will be successful. “I think it’s going to go our way. It’s a clear violation of privacy. I think the courts are going to see that,” he said.

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About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over four years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Waco. Follow him on Instagram @bornforgoodluck and email him at jordan@gunsamerica.com.

{ 14 comments… add one }
  • Ken January 17, 2022, 10:26 am

    I wonder how Newsom and every legislator that voted for this law and other notable anti gunners would feel if pro gun publications and forums published their name, address, social security number and other personal information about them… like their net worth.

    That way the bad guys would know where to go to get free stuff from people without guns instead of hitting dwellings to steal guns.

    And who knows…. it might convince some of those anti gunners to think seriously about the benefits of owning a firearm.

  • Wiko January 17, 2022, 8:27 am

    My state, South Dakota, has a law on the books, the text of which is as follows:
    “No firearm, owned by any resident of the State of South Dakota, shall be subject to registration, by any jurisdiction.”
    In my free state there is no collection of gun owner information that could be shared.

  • Frank January 14, 2022, 6:17 pm

    Guys… As long as you let a gender-confused, ignorant, communist POS get under your skin, it will continue to post its nonsensical dribble. If you just ignore it… it will eventually crawl back up Brandon’s @$$ and be quiet.

  • Kane January 14, 2022, 12:14 pm

    That’s just a really bad post.

    • Kane January 14, 2022, 12:16 pm

      Even the comments do NOT want to be connected to Blue Dog’s post.

  • EasyEddie January 14, 2022, 10:38 am

    An enthusiastic anti-gun official in NY had the list of NYS handgun owners made public. As expected, the vast majority of gun owners were outside the NYC metro area. Burglars knew which houses to not hit. But that was perhaps 10 years ago. Different climate now; little Orcs will have no problem picketing in front of gun owner’s residences. There is no constructive purpose to Cali’s action here.

    • D.J. January 14, 2022, 12:52 pm

      My belief is that it lets our version of the KOMSOMOL
      know where to protest next .

      Must be embarrassing to CA. Residents to see their
      Governor’s photos , showing him grinning ear to ear ,
      like a “ mule “ eating briars .

  • Randy January 14, 2022, 9:45 am

    The bill of rights the constitution doesn’t give a right it affirms a natural God given right . Our government opens the boarders , releases criminals , murderers from jail daily
    Wants to defund police and remove your right to self defense. Now the want to give criminals including government Your address so they can pay you a visit when you’re not home What could go wrong ???

  • Jimmy January 14, 2022, 7:59 am

    Texas and the conservative SCOTUS did this to us all but folks are blind to it.

  • paul I'll call you what I want/1st Amendment January 12, 2022, 11:04 am

    What lies are you hiding behind? You’re an ass!

  • Blue Dog (he/him) January 11, 2022, 9:42 am

    You know, if you run political ads, you have to sign the political ad with the name of the candidate or PAC paying for the ad and there are disclosure requirements for locations, donors and such. Why should information about firearm ownership be any more protected than political donations? Like any other Constitutional right, there are limits to the right of privacy.

    • Shanz January 14, 2022, 2:24 pm

      I love how you always talk about limiting individual liberty but never limitations on government.

    • Kane January 15, 2022, 11:35 pm

      There were several times in the recent past where Blue Dog could have called for the killer of Ashli Babbit to be identified but he stood down.

      There were several times in the past where Blue Dog could have called for a full account of BHO’s gun running operation to be disclosed where a federal agent was killed by the illegal sale of firearms by the ATF but Blue Dog stood down.

      And yet he says ” there are limits to the right of privacy” when Gavin Newsome pulls his string. I do remember when the left the left feared the overreach of both Dems and Reps but Blue Dog is NOT one of the old guard liberals.

    • Hondo January 17, 2022, 5:56 am

      Bluedouche he/stupido is wrong again, why are you such a un-American twat waffle ?

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