NEW TIMES: Are you familiar with last month’s Supreme Court decision in the case of District of Columbia v. Heller, which held that the Second Amendment protects an individual's right to possess a firearm for private use?
PILLOW: Yes, definitely.
NEW TIMES: How do you think that case will impact California?
PILLOW: I don’t see any immediate affect in California. As far as establishing the right to bear arms to individuals as opposed to militias or state armies, it’s important in terms of private gun ownership. But it still leaves room for state regulation. The precedent it sets is good. I oppose general arms prohibition, but don’t oppose regulation like background checks. I would like to see more national policy regarding gun regulation, but I doubt that will happen any time soon.
NEW TIMES: Do you think the decision will cause a lift of private gun bans in cities like San Francisco?
PILLOW: They’ve been trying to do that for years. With the political climate in California right now, I don’t see it having as much of an effect as it will in DC. California has the deepest layer of regulation of any state. Whether that has an affect on criminal activity or not, I don’t really see it as much as other factors like poverty.
NEW TIMES: Where do you see gun ownership laws in the next thirty years?
PILLOW: It’s certainly not a growth industry except for police and military. The hunting tradition is strong and will remain for the next twenty years or so, but there is less rural population now compared to urban, so gun ownership is constantly diminishing. Over the past thirty years, change has not been as great here as in Britain and Australia. The difference is they don’t have a second amendment. Without a constitutional guarantee, we’d probably be a gun free country too.