OPINION: Potential ban on the Ventura County Gun Show: Let’s make this permanent


Protesters gather at the entrance of the Ventura County Fairgrounds to voice their desire for the cancellation of gun shows. Photo credit: VC Reporter

Linda Manzo, Writer

The product of the gun show ban taking effect immediately is that the Orange County traditional event will be discontinued. State Senator Monique Limón and Assemblyman Steve Bennett are currently pushing to activate this law throughout the state, ending the two-day triannual event hosted by Crossroads of the West at the Ventura County Fairgrounds. Crossroads of the West is to host the traditional event, which their website claims is “America’s Best Gun Show” and has brought together more than half a million participants throughout the duration of 2021. The upcoming gun show should be Ventura County’s final hosting, as the event only deteriorates the safety of our community. 

An anonymous Spectra employee along with Spectra employee Bree Padilla have shared their views after working multiple of the reoccurring gun shows. “I think there should be a different way of selling guns to people because not everybody should be allowed to buy them,” shared Bree. A complete ban would be irrational, as Bree elaborates, “The gun show is more than just guns and ammo. It’s a variety of different things.” Though the complete vanquishing of the event is illogical, things have to change. “The intention of the people coming into the show was questionable… some of the things they said made me feel unsure of my safety,” shared an anonymous employee. The complete depletion of gun shows is not the goal, however, there are alterations required. Deeper background checks and tighter regulations concerning the storage of weapons are simple changes that would increase the safety of our country. 

The Crossroads of the West advertisement for the traditional event. Photo credit: californiagunshows.net

 In the absence of the annual summer fair, the fairgrounds need events like this to allow the grounds to flourish, especially financially. The traditional gun shows are enjoyed by many, as the upcoming event on Dec 11 and 12 has an estimated 8,000 attendees accompanied by 120 exhibitors. The economic boost is a necessity for the fairgrounds, and the event allows the gun enthusiast community a place to connect. It also provides a safer alternative, where guns and ammunition can legally be sold with a licensed advisor present.

With the risk of losing the gun shows, gun enthusiasts may find it challenging to purchase the weapons. The “Ghost Gun” phenomenon that was a regular occurrence during gun shows has been prohibited and will go into effect as of July 1, 2022. The struggle for purchasing a gun is necessary because in America it’s dangerously easy to purchase a gun. Our glorified second amendment provides the right to bear arms, however, the historical context is crucial to take into consideration when referring to the law for modern-day situations. Weapons were socially acceptable in the late 1770s, but in 2021, there is a significant decrease in the requirement for possessing a gun. It’s not uncommon for children to find their guardians’ weapons and wreak havoc. The multitude of devastating mass shootings could have been avoided if the weapons weren’t so easily attainable. In the most recent school shooting, the shooter was able to have access to the weapon due to his father keeping it unprotected. If these are the type of careless owners within our country, why have our laws not changed to tighten regulations and requirements? 

These gatherings provide an undeniable influx of revenue while harming our community simultaneously. The potential harm that’s introduced to our county severely outweighs the economic boost the fairgrounds are receiving. The Ventura County Fairgrounds has found many creative outlets to produce income following the COVID-19 lockdown. Events such as Concerts In Your Car and drive-in movies have been able to keep the city’s beloved site afloat. The deduction of the gun shows may provide a financial burden, but the quality of safety in our community outweighs the economic pursuits of the county.

What do you think?