There are many U.S. cities and states which require registration of firearms and elaborate licensing schemes. You might think that this is the sort of infringement which is prohibited by the Second Amendment of the Constitution.  While the U.S. Supreme Court has affirmed the Second Amendment as an individual right, it will be years before unconstitutional city and state laws are challenged and struck down.

The application of the Fifth Amendment is more defined. In the case of Haynes v. United States, (1968) the requirement to register guns has been ruled an unconstitutional infringement for a certain protected class. The good news is that you can readily join this class. The bad news is, you have to become a felon or prohibited person to enjoy freedom from registration.

Haynes v. United States, 390 U.S. 85 (1968),  interpreted the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution‘s self-incrimination clause. Miles Edward Haynes was a convicted felon who was charged with failing to register a firearm under the National Firearms Act of 1934. Haynes argued that as convicted felon prohibited from owning a firearm, requiring him to register was essentially requiring him to make an open admission to the government, a violation of his right not to incriminate himself.

The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Haynes in a 7-1 decision. This decision blocks state prosecutions of criminals who fail to register guns as required by state law gun registration schemes. Law abiding citizens must comply with the schemes and pay the associated fees.

Like North Korea, California has a one party political system and strict gun control. California has passed every gun control law ever conceived short of outright prohibition. It is instructive to look to California to see what anti-gun politicians want to achieve. It has little to do with crime and everything to do with control.

The Supreme Court decisions of Heller (2008) and McDonald (2010) established that the Second Amendment applies to all states and many of California’s gun laws are now being challenged in the federal courts. California passes laws they know are unconstitutional, trampling civil rights. The Second Amendment does not apply to California laws until they are overturned by the Supreme Court.

In California it is illegal to possess, import or purchase “assault weapons” unless they are registered with the state. Pretty much every AR-15 sold in free America is an “assault weapon” under California law. While California’s Assault Weapons Ban does allow individuals to obtain, transport or possess banned weapons with permission from the DOJ, the DOJ generally does not grant such permission to ordinary citizens.

California has taken money from firearms registration to form Armed Prohibited Persons Teams. These units hunt down people who are not allowed to have guns. This sounds great and the NRA initially supported California’s program. The result has been intimidation of family members and warrantless searches and seizures. C.D. “Chuck” Michel, a civil rights attorney, says, “It’s being billed as going after dangerous people, and for the most part, with some exceptions, admittedly, it’s not going after dangerous people. It’s not making society any safer.”