The February 2011 issue of American Rifleman arrived in my mailbox today, and I was immediately struck by a coincidence: the cover features two handguns that will never be sole in California: Springfield Armory's XB(M) Compact, and Remington's R1 1911. One new pistol built to a 100 year old design, and one new pistol built to a 21st century design, but both are “unsafe” according to the state of California.
What make these guns unsafe: the lack of a magazine disconnect feature, required for new pistol models to meet California “safety” requirements since 2007. Note: for all you non-gun people out there, a magazine disconnect is a mechanical device which prevents a pistol from firing if the magazine is removed from the gun. All serious defensive handgun shooters believe them to be an unsafe “Mommy” feature because magazine disconnects often prevent magazines from falling free during reloads, and render a person defenseless if they cannot insert a magazine fast enough during a reload. No police department that I know of would use a pistol that has a magazine disconnect.
What makes all of this utterly galling is that my pistol, a Kimber Custom II, is functionally identical to the Remington R1 pistol, but is sold in California because it is “grandfathered” in before the new requirements of 2007. So am I now shooting an unsafe pistol. The California DOJ thinks so.
It is nothing more than a creeping handgun ban.