OAKLAND — California Attorney General Rob Bonta today issued a statement welcoming a decision by a California court in favor of a state law that bans the marketing of firearms to children. Today in Safari Club International v. Bonta, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California denied a motion by several gun groups to block enforcement of California’s Business and Professions Code section 22949.80, which prohibits a ‘firearm industry member’ from advertising or marketing a firearm-related product in a manner that is designed, intended, or reasonably appears to be attractive to minors.
“Today’s decision is another victory in our fight to protect California from this epidemic of senseless gun violence,” said Attorney General Bonta. “The idea of marketing dangerous weapons to kids is despicable, and I will not stand for it. Our children and families have endured enough fear and pain from endless gun violence tragedies — it's time to end this. My office will continue fighting with every tool we have at our disposal to defend our state’s lifesaving gun safety laws.”
This is the second district court to refuse to preliminarily enjoin enforcement of the law, after a similar ruling in the Central District of California on October 24, 2022, in Junior Sports Magazines v. Bonta. Together, the two rulings mark a significant step forward in the California Department of Justice’s efforts in court to defend the state’s commonsense gun safety laws.
California continues its efforts to advance laws and policies that save lives and prevent gun deaths. In 2021, California saw a 37% lower gun death rate than the national average. Over and over again, studies have shown that California has one of the lowest rates of gun deaths in the country. Data collected by the CDC ranks California as having the 6th lowest firearm mortality rate out of all 50 states. And research by the Giffords Law Center found that California's gun death rate was 37% lower than the national average.