California animal shelter bans anti-gun control supporters from adopting pets

A Southern California animal shelter is sparking controversy after announcing it is banning people from adopting pets if they do not support strict gun control measures.

"We do not support those who believe that the 2nd amendment gives them the right to buy assault weapons," Kim Sill, owner of the Shelter Hope Pet Shop in Thousand Oaks, wrote on the shelter's website. "If your beliefs are not in line with ours, we will not adopt a pet to you."

The announcement comes amid a spate of recent mass shootings across the U.S. 

Most recently, 19 young students and two teachers were fatally shot at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.

In accordance with its anti-gun policy, the rescue said it will conduct a one-hour interview with prospective adopters, during which they will "grill" them on if they "care about children being gunned down" in schools.

"If you hesitate, because your core belief is that you believe teachers need to carry firearms, then you will not get approved to adopt from us," Sill wrote. "If you foster for us and believe in guns, please bring our dogs and/or cats back, or we will arrange to have them picked up."

Some other requirements for future pet parents include having a valid driver's license and being at least 25-years-old. 

Sill referenced the deadly mass shooting at the Borderline Bar and Grill in 2018, writing that the shooter who carried out that attack had volunteered at Shelter Hope Pet Shop. Sill added that she had been told by officials that the gunman had considered targeting the shelter as a potential location to carry out the shooting.

If you think you can skirt around the policy, the shelter says - not so fast.

"In fact, if you lie about being a [National Rifle Association] supporter, make no mistake, we will sue you for fraud."

"We live in the only country in the world that continues to support weapons and not communities. Shelter Hope Pet Shop in no way will continue to operate if we are even remotely part of the problem."

Senate bargainers on Sunday announced the framework of a bipartisan response to last month’s mass shootings, a noteworthy but limited breakthrough offering modest gun curbs and stepped-up efforts to improve school safety and mental health programs.

The proposal falls far short of tougher steps long sought by President Joe Biden and many Democrats. Even so, the accord was embraced by Biden and enactment would signal a significant turnabout after years of gun massacres that have yielded little but stalemate in Congress.

Biden said in a statement that the framework "does not do everything that I think is needed, but it reflects important steps in the right direction, and would be the most significant gun safety legislation to pass Congress in decades."

Given the bipartisan support, "there are no excuses for delay, and no reason why it should not quickly move through the Senate and the House," he said.

Leaders hope to push any agreement into law rapidly — they hope this month — before the political momentum fades that has been stirred by the recent mass shootings.

Survivors of mass shootings and other incidents of gun violence have lobbied legislators and testified on Capitol Hill this week. Among them was Miah Cerrillo, an 11-year-old girl who survived the shooting at Robb Elementary. She described for lawmakers how she covered herself with a dead classmate’s blood to avoid being shot.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.