Jan 15, 2013
Del Mar Council Urges Gun Show Ban
In a strongly-worded resolution passed with unanimous support, the Del Mar City Council has urged the banning of a popular gun show on the city's fairgrounds. NBC 7's Catherine Garcia reports.
In a strongly worded resolution passed with unanimous support, the Del Mar City Council has urged the banning of a popular gun show at the city's fairgrounds.
For the last 22 years, "Crossroads of the West" has held its show in Del Mar, an ocean-side city of about 4,500 residents located 20 miles north of San Diego. The group promotes 60 shows a year throughout the west coast.
Gun shows like "Crossroads" have recently been criticized for their gun registration policies, especially in the wake of the Newtown massacre.
On Monday, the council cited the tragedy, in addition to the rising number of Americans killed with guns, as reason to ban the show from the fairgrounds.
"Hosting gun shows in Del Mar and calling them 'the Del Mar Gun Show' implies tacit approval of the gun shows by the citizens of Del Mar," according to the resolution.
The resolution urged the District Agricultural Association, which hosts the gun shows, to not renew its contract with Crossroads of the West or any other gun show sponsor.
"My response, relative to the school shootings is that when you have a gun-free zone, it is an invitation to people to come in and do what they want to do," said Dexter Haight, president of the NRA Members Council of Greater San Diego. "That's where people who want to do bad things are going to go to."
Haight said although he was urged to direct gun control questions to NRA headquarters, he felt there was too much misinformation at the meeting to remain quiet.
The council's action is not the first showing of support for such a ban. One local resident collected a petition with more than 750 signatures to ban the gun shows from Del Mar.
Organizers maintain that the show poses no danger to the community, though.
The Del Mar Fairgrounds Board of Directors met to hear what residents and members of the public thought about a potential ban last week.
"As a public entity we have to be cognizant of the fact that we cannot discriminate against who can or cannot use our facility," Board of Directors President Adam Day said earlier this month. "These shows are operated under the most strict rules and regulations."
Some supporters of gun shows say the responsibility lies with the owner of the weapon, while opponents say it is time for local officials to step in.
Day said that unless a board member challenges the gun show, it is unlikely it will be canceled.