At the Antioch Gun Expo on Sunday, enthusiasts were able to check out table after table displaying weapons, ammunition and support gear. There were gun owners and the newly curious. For many, it was a family affair with kids in tow.
Sunday was also the eve of the one-year anniversary of the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history, when a gunman opened fire on a music festival in Las Vegas, killing 59 -- including himself -- and injuring 851 people, many of whom were from California.
But few at the gun show at the Contra Costa County Fairgrounds felt that stricter gun laws were the answer to preventing mass shootings and terrorist attacks.
“More gun laws don’t solve that problem," said gun promoter Guy Meyers. "The problem is, we’re not enforcing the laws that we have on many levels."
California already has some of the strictest gun laws in the country. Just ahead of Sunday's deadline to sign bills into law, Gov. Brown added three more gun bills to the list.
The state is raising the minimum age from 18 to 21 to purchase a shotgun or rifle. It's banning gun ownership for life for people who have been hospitalized or placed on an involuntary psychiatric hold twice in one year and who are considered at risk of hurting themselves or others. Another law bans gun ownership for people with certain domestic violence misdemeanors.
But for expo volunteer Darcy Fischer, gun safety is not related to the age of the gun owner. "When I purchased my first gun I was probably in my mid-20s," she said, adding that knowing how to operate a gun safely is more important.
Fischer nodded at her 10-year-old daughter, who was at the show with her. "She knows how to operate a firearm, supervised," Fischer said. "You know, with all the safety parameters. We do the eye safety and ear safety, and she enjoys it and it’s something that she loves to do."
Fischer and some other gun owners at the expo said that if young adults are old enough to choose to serve in the military, they should be able to purchase a gun.
At another table, Antioch resident Russell Keith was checking out custom rifles. He said he got his first gun as a young boy, but supports raising the age of gun ownership to 21.
“To me I don’t have a problem with that. Because a lot of times people don’t teach their kids the proper way of how to use a gun," Keith said. He said there needs to be more education around gun safety.
“My dad taught me the proper way," he said. "What to shoot and what not to shoot."
Keith also agreed with the law signed by the governor prohibiting gun ownership for people who have been ordered into care for a mental health disorder twice in one year.
“They should have done that a long time ago,” Keith said.
He thinks that kind of law could have prevented the shooting death of 17 students in Parkland, Florida, in February. "They dropped the ball on that one," he said, referring to law enforcement. The 19-year-old suspect in the Parkland shooting was the subject of dozens of 911 calls and at least two separate tips to the FBI.
California's new gun laws will go into effect in January.