I'll admit. I've been doing some trolling on the web lately and I came across a heart-warming little gem regarding our friend, Senator Kevin de Leon, not-so-best-selling author of SB 798, the California Senate bill that is set to cause more harm than do any good in our golden state.

It would seem that Senator de Leon doesn't spend all his time blowing our hard-earned tax dollars coming up with senseless legislation. Back in January of this year, he apparently hosted the launch party for The California Fatherhood Initiative, which was created by the National Latino Fatherhood and Family Institute (NLFFI). http://fyrtshare.wordpress.com/2011/02/16/senator-kevin-de-leon-endorses-the-california-fatherhood-initiative/

Per the NLFFI's official website (www.NLFFI.org),

"The goal of the California Fatherhood Initiative (CFI)is to bring together organizations, government entities, professionals, law enforcement, legislators and community advocates that have a vested interest in improving the lives of children, families and communities through positive fatherhood involvement and youth mentorship."

They go on to say that, "The California Fatherhood Initiative will work in collaboration with President Barack Obama’s effort to help men better understand the positive role they play in adding protective factors to their children lives that will help build strength and resilience that will help children achieve their goals and dreams."

Being a new dad myself, I think this initiative is a great thing just by itself. And based on their stated objectives, it would seem like this is PRECISELY the type of organization could facilitate a solution to the issues surrounding the incident that sparked creation of SB 798.

And just so we're clear, there were several major issues with the young teenager who was shot by an LAPD officer back in December 2010, the least of which was the color of the Airsoft gun the 200-pound 13-year-old had in his hand. First of all, if you're 200 pounds at 13, you're a big dude (or chick). So big, you could probably be easily mistaken for an adult at 8pm in the winter time, when it's plenty dark by then. Second of all, you're taking an object that looks like a real gun and playing with it in public. OF COURSE something will go wrong with this recipe. Not to mention, according to current state law, this is a no-no.

"Current law provides that no person may openly display or expose
any imitation firearm in a public place, as defined. (Penal
Code § 20170.) A violation is an infraction punishable by a
fine of $100 for the first offense, and $300 for a second
offense. A third or subsequent violation is punishable as a
misdemeanor. (Penal Code § 20180.)"

THEN, this:

"Police said the boy refused to comply and instead
produced what was later found to be a fake Beretta 92F
handgun. [Officer] Abarca fired his gun, striking the boy."

Failure to comply with law enforcement in situations like that of the above will likely result in the failure to prevent real bullets from entering your body.

One of the many issues with SB 798 is that the Airsoft gun involved in the incident could have been a cellphone or other non-gun-related object and he still could have easily been shot. Outrageous, you say?

"Chicago police responding to a domestic dispute this morning shot and killed a man after he refused to drop an object that turned out to be a cellphone, officials say."

This happened 10 days prior to the composition of this Airsoft blog entry.

Quick...somebody get Obama's old chronies back in Chi-Town to crank out some legislation ASAP to require that cell phones be lumped in with devices that are "so substantially similar in coloration and overall appearance to an existing firearm as to lead a reasonable person to perceive that the device is a firearm."

That way, the following situation will totally be prevented because the officer will completely disregard his/her training to treat anything that could be a gun as a gun and relax because the object that could be a gun is neon, therefore it couldn't possibly be a gun...
"[Suspect] turned toward an officer, 'pulled an object from his pocket, which the officer believed to be a handgun, and aggressively came at the officer,' police said.

[Suspect] refused to drop the object and the officer, "fearing for his safety," fired at [Suspect], police said." - Taken from that same news story above. A neon phone could have easily prevented this little mix-up which resulted in death.  Are you sensing my sarcasm yet?

So anyway, rather than enforce the laws that are already in place, we're just going to slap more restrictions down on the table to trick the public into believing that the problem is not only being addressed, but that it's being solved. How are you able to sleep at night, Mr. de Leon?! Surely someone with enough drive and intelligence to get themselves elected into State office has to pause at some point in this process and say, "hmmmmmmmmm, you know, my own idea doesn't make sense." You & I both KNOW he's thought about it and knows this plan is wrong but continues to pursue it.

Some of you may know that the 1st hearing by the state's public safety committee was originally scheduled to occur several days ago. However, according to the latest status update on leginfo.ca.gov, SB 798's courageous, safety-conscious author decided June 14, 2011 wasn't such a good day for a hearing apparently.

"LAST HIST. ACTION : Set, first hearing. Hearing canceled at the request of author."

This next portion of the Pyramyd Airsoft Blog has been brought to you by the word, "Speculation."

It's rumor time.  Word on the Airsoft street is that Senator de Leon caught wind that there was trouble afoot because the California Airsoft industry was mounting an offensive aimed at crashing his little legislation party and rescheduled the date to try and foil our attempts to gather in large numbers. While that rumor remains unsubstantiated, I wouldn't think it an unreasonable scenario. 

So, since Honorable Kevin de Leon, 22nd Senate District of California, won't do the honorable thing by retracting his atrocious notion that Airsoft guns belong in the hands of children, perhaps he should retract his endorsement of the California Fatherhood Initiative.  It just seems a bit contradictory to endorse an organization which promotes the outlandish idea that fathers should take an increased level of responsibility by becoming a more active part of their own children's lives and educating those young minds about things like the extreme dangers with leading police officers to believe you have a weapon and are about to use it to cause them harm.  Clearly, Senator de Leon doesn't feel that human behavior nor lack of a good father figure or mentor was the issue with our 200-pound 13-year-old, who was playing with an Airsoft gun in public and then, while at gun point, failed to comply with the orders of a law enforcement officer.  Nope.  A good mentor wouldn't have prevented that situation from occurring one bit.  Neon colors would have done the trick, same with that cell phone guy who got popped.  *fart noise*

"If you're not mad, then you're not paying attention." - Bumper Stick I Saw on a Car Once

If you are mad, channel that energy in a positive manner, hustle on up to the Capitol building in Sacramento this coming Tuesday, June 21, 2011 for the Public Safety Committee hearing, and politely speak your mind to the Public Safety Committee as to why this issue needs to be addressed in some other fashion.  Perhaps you might consider the idea of dropping the California Fatherhood Initiative's name into the hat to see what Senator de Leon has to say about that.

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