When the Democratic-controlled Colorado State House last week passed a ban on the sale of magazines that carry more than 15 rounds of ammunition, Longmont resident Savant Suykerbuyk set to work on "Operation Mountain Standard."
The operation -- a project that will take place March 16 at Boulder Gunsport -- will involve exchanging gun magazines for donations to Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, Colorado's largest in-state gun lobby. The purpose, according to organizers, is to flood Colorado with "high-capacity" magazines before a potential ban hits.
Suykerbuyk and volunteers are soliciting magazine donations, primarily high-capacity magazines, from out of state to supply the fundraiser. A $10 contribution at the event earns donors 21 and older a handgun magazine, and donations of $20 will earn donors 18 and older a rifle magazine, with a limit of two magazines per donor.
Gunsport is only providing the venue, and its staff will not be involved in the event, organizers say.
Suykerbuyk, 25, a Marine Corps veteran, said the idea originated on a Reddit.com guns forum and he decided to take it up after talking to other Second Amendment advocates.
While the magazine ban must pass through the Colorado Senate and be signed by Gov. John Hickenlooper to become law, Operation Mountain Standard is looking to be ahead of the curve.
"We recognize that the current Colorado legislative body is most likely going to pass what we feel are constitutionally infringing laws soon," Suykerbuyk said. "We want to get as many of these magazines that will be banned into Colorado gun owners' hands as possible, thereby grandfathering them if/when such a ban is enacted."
Suykerbuyk has a concealed carry permit for a Glock 19 9mm pistol, which has a standard 15-round magazine. There are magazines for the gun that can carry as many as 33 rounds, he said. He also owns an AR-15 rifle that comes standard with a 30-round magazine but could be equipped with a 100-round magazine.
While he strongly opposes the magazine ban, and a concealed weapons ban for college campuses, Suykerbuyk said he supports a fee on gun buyers to pay for background checks, so long as it is reasonable, and universal background checks on gun sales, provided a national gun-owner registry is not established.
"I am very proud that people on all sides of the issue are trying to do whatever they can to make us safer. I don't support laws, however, that I feel are only hurting freedoms without actually protecting anyone," he said.
Rep. Claire Levy, D-Boulder, sponsor of the bill that would ban concealed weapons on college campuses, did not directly respond to a request for comment on Operation Mountain Standard. Dean Toda, a spokesman for the Colorado House Democrats, said he spoke with Levy about it Wednesday and noted she did not want to help publicize the event, which he characterized as irresponsible.
"We've been trying to have a civil, reasonable debate down here on guns," Toda said. "This is not part of that. This is a publicity stunt by someone who is trying to drive money to Rocky Mountain Gun Owners."
State Sen. Rollie Heath, D-Boulder, said Wednesday he did not have an opinion about the event. Heath is Senate sponsor for Levy's bill as well as the bill that would require payment for background checks during gun transfers. Both of those bills will be reviewed in the Senate State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee on Monday afternoon, at the same time the magazine ban bill will be heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Suykerbuyk said that, so far, he has received just one shipment of donated magazines, sent to him from Pennsylvania.
Contact Camera Staff Writer Joe Rubino at 303-473-1328 or email@example.com.
If you go
What: "Operation Mountain Standard" magazine giveaway
When: 9 a.m. March 16
Where: Boulder Gunsport, 1707 14th St., Boulder
For more info.: coloradomagazines.com or facebook.com ___
Also on HuffPost:
1981: The Attempted Assassination Of President Ronald Reagan
on March 30, 1981, President Reagan and three others were shot and wounded in an assassination attempt by John Hinckley, Jr. outside the Washington Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C. Reagan's press secretary, Jim Brady, was shot in the head.
1993: The Brady Handgun Violence Act
The Brady Handgun Violence Act of 1993, signed into law by President Bill Clinton, mandated that federally licensed dealers complete comprehensive background checks on individuals before selling them a gun. The legislation was named for James Brady, who was shot during an attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan in 1981.
1994: The Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act
The Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1994, instituted a ban on 19 kinds of assault weapons, including Uzis and AK-47s. The crime bill also banned the possession of magazines holding more than ten rounds of ammunition. (An exemption was made for weapons and magazines manufactured prior to the ban.)
2004: Law Banning Magazines Holding More Than Ten Rounds Of Ammunition Expires
In 2004, ten years after it first became law, Congress allowed a provision banning possession of magazines holding more than ten rounds of ammunition to expire through a sunset provision. Brady Campaign President Paul Helmke told HuffPost that the expiration of this provision meant that Rep. Gabby Giffords's alleged shooter was able to fire off 20-plus shots without reloading (under the former law he would have had only ten).
2007: The U.S. Court of Appeals For The District Of Columbia Rules In Favor Of Dick Heller
In 2007 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled to allow Dick Heller, a licensed District police officer, to keep a handgun in his home in Washington, D.C. Following that ruling, the defendants petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case.
2008: The NICS Improvement Amendments Act
Following the deadly shooting at Virginia Tech University, Congress passed legislation to require states provide data on mentally unsound individuals to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, with the aim of halting gun purchases by the mentally ill, and others prohibited from possessing firearms. The bill was signed into law by President George W. Bush in January of 2008.
2008: Supreme Court Strikes Down D.C. Handgun Ban As Unconstitutional
In June of 2008, the United States Supreme Court upheld the verdict of a lower court ruling the D.C. handgun ban unconstitutional in the landmark case <em>District of Columbia v. Heller</em>.
Gabrielle Giffords And Trayvon Martin Shootings
Gun control advocates had high hopes that reform efforts would have increased momentum in the wake of two tragic events that rocked the nation. In January of 2011, Jared Loughner opened fire at an event held by Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), killing six and injuring 13, including the congresswoman. Resulting attempts to push gun control legislation <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/09/trayvon-martin-shooting-gun-debate_n_1413115.html" target="_hplink">proved fruitless</a>, with neither proposal even succeeding in gaining a single GOP co-sponsor. More than a year after that shooting, Florida teenager Trayvon Martin was <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/news/trayvon-martin" target="_hplink">gunned down</a> by George Zimmerman in an event that some believed would bring increased scrutiny on the nation's Stand Your Ground laws. While there has been increasing discussion over the nature of those statutes, lawmakers were <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/09/trayvon-martin-shooting-gun-debate_n_1413115.html" target="_hplink">quick to concede</a> that they had little faith the event would effectively spur gun control legislation, thanks largely to the National Rifle Association's vast lobbying power. Read more <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/09/trayvon-martin-shooting-gun-debate_n_1413115.html" target="_hplink">here</a>:
Colorado Movie Theater Shooting
In July of 2012, a heavily armed gunman <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/20/aurora-shooting-movie-theater-batman_n_1688547.html" target="_hplink">opened fire on theatergoers</a> attending a midnight premiere of the final film of the latest Batman trilogy, killing 12 and wounding scores more. The suspect, James Eagan Holmes, allegedly carried out the act with a number of handguns, as well as an AR-15 assault rifle with a 100-round drum magazine. Some lawmakers used the incident, which took place in a state with some of the laxest gun control laws, to bring forth legislation designed to place increased regulations on access to such weapons, but many observers, citing previous experience, were <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/20/batman-shooting_n_1690547.html" target="_hplink">hesitant to say</a> that they would be able to overcome the power of the National Rifle Association and Washington gun lobby.
Sikh Temple Shooting
On August 5, 2012, white supremacist Wade Michael Page opened fire on a Sikhs gathered at a temple in Oak Creek, Wis., killing six and wounding four more before turning the gun on himself.