In response to the San Bernardino terrorist attack, the same group of people who are trying to take away your guns are also trying to gain access to your phone.

As a civil rights organization that represents the interests of some of the most regulated, maligned and legislated classes of people (YOU, the everyday law-abiding gun owner), it is imperative that our members and supporters have access to their constitutionally guaranteed rights to assembly, speech and privacy without compromise, as all of the inalienable rights are interwoven and dependent upon each other.

That is why we are asking you to join with FPC in opposing AB 1681, authored by Assmeblymember Jim Cooper (D-Elk Grove).

AB 1681 would require a smartphone that is manufactured on or after January 1, 2017, and sold in California, to be capable of being decrypted and unlocked by its manufacturer or its operating system provider.

Whether it’s a whistleblower exposing the illegal arms trafficking by federal law enforcement (Yes, we’re talking about Fast and Furious) or a state official (Yes, we’re talking about you Leland Yee), or just the average citizen wrongly accused of being on the armed prohibited persons system, the smartphone may contain records of their associations, sources, behaviors and any other protected activities.

Should that data be accessed, then others could fall prey to abuse and harassment. Simply knowing that the consumer is not allowed by law to have true protection could chill speech, assembly and whistleblower investigations.

Furthermore, Assembly Bill 1681 runs afoul of the California Constitution’s guarantee that protects the privacy and property of an individual by putting a mandate on the intellectual property and consumer and market-based solutions that provide much needed protections in this modern data-driven world.

Should the state find itself in a position to dictate the intellectual property and consumer choices of the market-place place when it comes to personal security and the protection of membership lists and communications, then why not mandate a “smartgun” with a government backdoor too?

How about an encrypted hard drive backdoor of membership communications between Firearms Policy Coalition and its supporters?

It is not just a slippery slope. The fact the bill exists shows the descent into statism and the willingness of the state to legislate its way out of its constitutional burden of proving guilt is already here – something that the marketplace has no duty to assist in – and something that should scare the hell out of every law-abiding gun owner.