Sept. 26, 2013: Frank Loane, owner of Pasadena Pawn and Gun, stands in front of a wall of assault rifles at his store in Pasadena, Md.AP
PASADENA, Md. – Maryland residents have been buying guns in record numbers before a law takes effect Tuesday, with provisions aimed at helping keep guns away from criminals and the mentally ill, strengthening safety training and banning 45 types of assault weapons.
Opponents decry what they call an ineffective law that will only make it harder for law-abiding citizens to exercise Second Amendment rights.
They say the state also failed to prepare properly for implementation after Gov. Martin O'Malley, who is considering a run for the White House in 2016, pushed the complicated measure through the General Assembly to build his credentials for a potential Democratic primary race
On Thursday, opponents of the restrictions sued in federal court in Baltimore, seeking to block the legislation from taking effect. The court scheduled a hearing for Tuesday on their motion for an order that would temporarily block implementation while the court considers whether to permanently bar Maryland from enforcing the law.
When O'Malley signed the legislation in May, he highlighted a provision that will require residents who buy a handgun to be fingerprinted to own a handgun, making Maryland the sixth such state to do so.
"States with similar licensing provisions have substantially lower gun death rates than states that do not. So, if we want better results, we have to make better choices, and this legislation is part of that series of better choices that we are making," the governor said.
A man who stood close to President Barack Obama and other heads of state while providing sign language interpretation at Nelson Mandela’s memorial Tuesday was a “fake” who was making up his own gestures, sign language experts say, raising questions about the security at the event.
"[He] was moving his hands around, but there was no meaning in what he used his hands for," Bruno Druchen, the Deaf Federation of South Africa’s national director, told The Associated Press Wednesday.