April 23, 2014. Albany, NY. The deadline for New York State residents to register their firearms was one week ago. The law is proving to be a disaster just like the attempt to mandate firearm registration in Connecticut earlier this year. With NY’s similar deadline for registration having passed last week, experts are again conceding that as many as 95 percent of the state’s gun owners are choosing to be criminals rather than register their guns.
An illustration of ridiculous NY and US gun control laws. Image courtesy of TheBlaze.com.
A year and a half ago, The New American accurately predicted what would happen last week in New York. The publication wrote, ‘After Democrats in New York rammed a sweeping assault on the right to keep and bear arms through the legislature that failed to exempt police officers from the draconian restrictions, gun owners and even some lawmakers are planning what has been dubbed potentially the largest act of civil disobedience in state history. According to news reports, gun rights activists are urging everyone to defy far-left Governor Andrew Cuomo’s new registration mandate while daring authorities to “come and take it.”’
NY gun owners rebel
In the above report from January 2013, American Shooters Supply President Brian Olesen warned, “I’ve heard from hundreds of people that they’re prepared to defy the law, and that number will be magnified by the thousands, by the tens of thousands, when the registration deadline comes.” Olesen, President of one of the largest firearms dealers in New York, was proved correct this past week when only a small number of required gun owners in the state actually registered with the government.
One group of grassroots gun owners who’ve been fighting the NY Safe Act from day one is the publication Bearing Arms. In the lead-up to the registration deadline, the group published pictures of New York gun owners burning their state-issued gun registration forms in protest. Now that the deadline has come and gone, they estimate that only one-half of one percent of NY gun owners required to register their firearms did so. The author reminds readers that the law keeps registration numbers a secret. But their estimates are that only 4,000 of the state’s roughly 1.5 million affected gun owners complied with the law and registered.
A report last week from Forbes Magazine detailed the gun owner rebellion in Connecticut and New York with a mix of shock and amusement. More than three months after Connecticut’s mandatory firearm registration deadline passed at the beginning of this year, CT State Police have released the actual numbers pertaining to newly required gun registrations. Officials there say they received 78,000 registrations out of more than 300,000 gun owners required to do so, or roughly a 25% compliance rate.
In New York, gun owners rightfully complain about the vastly expanded definition of the term, ‘assault weapon’. Historically, Americans of all political persuasions agreed that an ‘assault weapon’ was any standard issued military long gun, including small hand-held Uzis, semi-automatic AK’s, AR’s and M-16’s. But not simple semi-automatic handguns and pistols. New York’s new law now classifies guns manufactured as far back as the 1800’s as ‘assault weapons’, along with shotguns and any long gun with a pistol grip.
Law enforcement rebellion
A separate report from Bearing Arms documents the responses from numerous New York politicians and Sheriff’s Departments and explains why a 95-98 percent non-compliance rate among NY gun owners isn’t out of the question. The authors suggest that early announcements by a number of County-level governments confirming they wouldn’t enforce the law, including a large number of Sheriff’s offices, gave hundreds of thousands of NY gun owners the courage to defy the registration mandate.
The publication writes of the state’s rebellious firearms owners, ‘Many municipal and county governments have joined them in open defiance. Gun owners in New York are well aware of the fact that their county Sheriffs, state police, and local officers don’t intend to enforce the law, a stance that many law enforcement leaders have announced publicly.’
The author quotes NY State Rep. Bill Nojay (R-Pittsford) coming to the defense of defiant New York gun owners, “The rank and file Troopers don’t want anything to do with it. I don’t know of a single Sheriff upstate who is going to enforce it…If you don’t have the Troopers and you don’t have the Sheriffs, who have you got? You’ve got Andrew Cuomo pounding on the table in Albany.”
What comes next? Many fear house-to-house gun confiscations are on the near horizon in New York. Other states have already begun confiscating unregistered firearms by comparing old gun registration lists, sales lists, permit revocation orders and other indicators of now-illegal gun ownership with current registration lists to determine what gun owners are now in violation of the law. States such has California have even been using federal grant money to carry out the arrests and gun confiscations. Will New York and Connecticut be next?
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