ND Gun Debate Reignited After California Shooting

By  | 

The mass shooting spree at a social service agency in California Wednesday was the deadliest shooting since the attack in Newtown, Conn., in 2012.

There have been six mass shootings in the past week, but fortunately, North Dakota has been left out of such tragedies.

Whenever a mass shooting occurs a debate ignites on how to prevent these kinds of tragedies from happening again.

North Dakota has some of the country's less restrictive gun laws, while California has some of the strictest. Yet North Dakota is one of only five states where a mass shooting has not occurred this year.

Gun sales have been good at Mandan Sporting Goods since Black Friday. Gavin Amdahl is looking to buy a rifle and he says preventing responsible gun owners from purchasing weapons won't eliminate mass shootings.

"I think the more you regulate guns the worse it gets, that just leads to more outlaws owning guns instead of the actual people who are good honest gun buyers who actual know how to handle weapons," said Amdahl, gun owner.

President Barack Obama disagrees.

"We're going to have to take basic steps that would make it harder, not impossible, harder for individuals to get access to weapons," Obama said.

Two of the guns used in Wednesday's shooting in San Bernardino were purchased legally. Store owner Brandon Charvat thinks mental illness, not access to guns, is the problem.

"California has the strictest gun laws in the whole United States, they do all their own background checks, it's a mandatory 10 day wait before you can even take a gun home," Charvat said.

Charvat says he hasn't seen a run on ammunition or semi-automatic weapons since this week's tragedy, but his wholesalers indicated that some have.

The debate on how to prevent mass shootings wont be resolved because of San Bernardino and the controversy will only intensify if another mass shooting occurs.

The closest incident North Dakota had to a mass shooting occurred in May at a Wal-mart in Grand Forks. That tragedy involved three victims. Mass shootings are defined as and assault involving four or more people.