California town wants to make gun insurance mandatory

California city wants to make gun insurance mandatory


The Californian city of San José wants to compel owners of firearms to take out insurance for the damage their devices could cause. 

The decree , examined Tuesday in first reading by the city council, would also oblige the owners to pay a modest annual tax (25 dollars) intended to finance NGOs fighting against violence linked to weapons.

The purpose of this law is not to limit the purchase of firearms, but the physical damage that they regularly cause as well as the financial cost that this entails for the community, explain the municipal authorities.

“We have seen how insurance has reduced road deaths over the decades, for example with financial incentives to promote safe driving and the purchase of cars fitted with airbags and anti-lock braking systems,” points out Sam Liccardo, the mayor of this city of one million, the largest in Northern California.

“Similarly, gun insurance currently available on the market can adjust the amount to encourage owners to keep their guns in a safe, install locking systems and take safety courses,” he continues. .

Guns are commonplace in the United States, where approximately 40% of adults live in households with at least one gun, according to the Pew Research Center.

< p>Nearly 23 million firearms were sold in the country in 2020 and an estimated 40,000 people are shot and killed each year (including suicides).

Despite this devastation and the fact that a majority of Americans say they favor stricter gun controls, politicians have failed to toughen the laws on the matter, opponents invoking the Constitution and the protection of their freedoms

“While the 2nd Amendment protects the right of all citizens to own a gun, it does not stipulate that the taxpayer must subsidize this right,” notes Mr. Liccardo.

In a press release, the San José City Council estimates the cost of gun violence to the city at approximately $40 million per year (police, rescue, investigations, etc.).

The The National Foundation for Gun Rights, a group opposed to the proposed city ordinance, called the measure “blatantly unconstitutional,” as implausible as a “free speech tax” or a “tax on the right to go to church”.

The decree will pass in second next month and is due to come into effect in August if passed.

Share Button