The Commonsense Gun Laws Partnership: A Collaboration Dedicated to Preventing Gun Violence


Earlier this year, we announced an exciting new partnership between the Law Center and Americans for Responsible Solutions (ARS), the organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, retired combat veteran and NASA astronaut Mark Kelly. Together, we are committed to bringing some sanity to our nation’s gun laws.

With our more than 20 years of research and knowledge on the nation’s gun laws, and the powerful grassroots network cultivated by Americans for Responsible Solutions, together we are producing tools that will empower lawmakers and community members to stop gun violence before it happens.

The Law Center and Americans for Responsible Solutions will assist legislators by creating a series of toolkits that will aid in developing solutions to protect communities from gun violence while ensuring that the legislation complies with the Second Amendment. The toolkits on each topic will provide:

  • Evidence of the particular gap in current laws that perpetuate gun violence;
  • Effective, tested solutions to close the loophole;
  • Policy rationale for action;
  • Legal basis for new laws; and
  • Most importantly – straight-forward features of the policies that will guide legislative drafting.

Continue reading

Warning Signs: Preventing Gun Violence in Crisis Situations


The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence is proud to partner with Americans for Responsible Solutions to release Warning Signs: Preventing Gun Violence in Crisis Situations. This collaborative report provides analysis of laws that help to empower community members to prevent gun violence in crisis situations.

Together, the Law Center and Americans for Responsible Solutions will continue to develop solutions to keep guns out of dangerous hands through careful research and legislative drafting. The Law Center’s unparalleled legal expertise and the formidable grassroots network of Americans for Responsible Solutions will ensure that the best information available on smart gun policies reaches legislators nationwide.

Download a PDF copy of Warning Signs: Preventing Gun Violence in Crisis Situations

Preventing the Next Mass Shooting Before It’s News

Columbine, Virginia Tech, Tucson, Aurora, Newtown. Most Americans can easily list many of the high profile mass shootings that our nation has experienced. News reports after these events frequently mention that friends, family members, and acquaintances noted a change in the shooter’s behavior in the time leading up to the tragedy. While a variety of legislative proposals can help reduce mass shootings, one approach is to give community members ways to act, so that access to guns can be temporarily removed when a person is in crisis.

Continue reading

Thank you, Gabby and Mark

Today marks another dark anniversary in our country’s history. Two years ago, our nation mourned a horrific act in Tucson, Arizona – where a beloved congresswoman, Gabrielle Giffords, was shot in the head by a dangerously mentally ill man and barely survived. Six Americans in the crowd were killed and thirteen were gravely wounded alongside her. Since then, we, as a nation, have witnessed shooting after shooting – in our theatres, shopping malls, and houses of worship – yet have done next to nothing to stop them.

We cannot let this violence continue.

Gabby Giffords is not willing to stand by and do nothing. The horrific event that changed her life two years ago today has made her more resilient and determined than ever. Earlier today, she announced that she and her husband Mark Kelly will fight to find responsible solutions to the massive loss of life that we experience on a daily basis.

“We have experienced too much death and hurt to remain idle. Our response to the Newtown massacre must consist of more than regret, sorrow and condolence. The children of Sandy Hook Elementary School and all victims of gun violence deserve fellow citizens and leaders who have the will to prevent gun violence in the future.”

That means all of us. Help us thank Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly for their bravery and tenacity by joining them. Your voice is needed to tell your legislators that you support them and will continue to support them in the fight to end these tragedies.

Vice President Biden’s task force is in meetings this week to discuss the next steps. Please call your legislators and tell them that you want them to support the following smart and effective solutions to the end the bloodshed:

1) A background check with all gun sales
2) A ban on military-style assault weapons
3) A ban on large capacity ammunition magazines – some of which can hold 100 rounds of ammunition

Tell them that they must take action today – because the safety of our loved ones depends on it.

Find your legislators now and call:

The Law Center Joined Americans Nationwide to Remember Victims and Survivors of Gun Violence on the One-Year Anniversary of the Shooting in Tucson, Arizona

On January 8, 2012, the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence joined Americans nationwide to remember victims and survivors of gun violence on the one-year anniversary of the shooting in Tucson, Arizona.  At a candlelight vigil in Yerba Buena Gardens, survivors, legislators, and activists from across the Bay Area gathered to reflect on the terrible toll of gun violence and the need for renewed efforts to keep our communities safe.

Our Legal Director Juliet Leftwich spoke to the need for action in an op-ed in the Contra Costa Times, urging Congress to enact sensible gun laws to prevent future tragedies:

Remember Republicans and Democrats alike sitting together to express their unified support for their fallen colleague? Sadly, rather than using that moment to actually do something tangible to prevent similar tragedies from happening in the future, our leaders let the opportunity pass and simply returned to business as usual.

It’s not too late. If members of Congress truly want to honor the victims and survivors of the Tucson shooting, they should stop pandering to the gun lobby and start protecting public safety.

We thank everyone who attended Sunday’s vigil.  You can watch a KTVU news report on the event below and see more photos from the vigil here.

The San Francisco vigil, organized by the Law Center, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence Bay Area Chapters, 1000 Mothers to Prevent Violence, and Youth ALIVE!, was one of numerous vigils held on January 8 to remember victims of gun violence nationwide.  Reports from events across the country are being collected at

Gun violence prevention groups have also released a number of important materials recently.  Mayors Against Illegal Guns released a video of survivors from the Tucson shooting sharing their stories.  The Violence Policy Center also published a new report entitled More Guns, More Shootings, which found that, in 2008, 110,215 people were shot in the United States, a nine-year high.

Petition to Support Ban on Large Capacity Ammunition Magazines Following Tragic Tucson Shooting

Congresswoman McCarthy and gun violence prevention advocates at press conference introducing H.R. 308

After the tragic mass shooting in Tucson, which left six dead and thirteen wounded, including Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, we must stand together to take common sense steps to prevent similar tragedies.

The Arizona shooter used a handgun equipped with a large capacity ammunition magazine capable of holding 33 bullets, which enabled him to cause so much devastation in a matter of moments. Only when the shooter finally had to reload were brave individuals able to tackle him and end the bloodshed.

Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy has introduced H.R. 308, which would prohibit the possession or sale of large capacity ammunition magazines. Please join us by signing this petition in support of Congresswoman McCarthy’s legislation and forwarding the petition to anyone you know who would be willing to join this effort.

To: Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy

I support H.R. 308, your bill to ban large capacity ammunition magazines.

Large capacity ammunition magazines are frequently used in mass shootings, including the tragedy in Tucson and those at Columbine High School, Virginia Tech, Fort Hood, and 101 California Street in San Francisco.

These magazines were banned as part of the 1994 federal assault weapons ban, but became legal when Congress allowed the law to expire in 2004. We must ban large capacity magazines and work to end America’s gun violence epidemic.




About Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence

The Law Center is a national law center dedicated to preventing gun violence. Formed in the wake of the 1993 assault weapon massacre at 101 California Street in San Francisco, we provide free legal assistance to public officials and activists working to reduce firearm-related deaths and injuries.


Privacy: The Law Center is committed to protecting your privacy and will not sell any of your personal information to third parties.