On Feb. 16, our editor, Sam Pollak, wrote a column titled, “No One Is Coming To Take Your Guns.” In my circle of conservative, pro-gun friends, Sam Pollak is a Darth Vader, if not worse! Sam and I will never agree on any political issue, and our most volatile area of disagreement is on firearms, but he is my friend, and I respect a man who puts his name on his opinion for all to see, no matter how wrong he may be.
“No one is coming to take your guns.” Although no one is currently kicking down our doors and forcibly removing our firearms, if one looks at the laws regarding guns and firearm accessories over the last 20 years, even a blind man could see a “slippery slope.”
Most boxing matches are not won by landing “haymakers.” They are won on the scorecard; so, too, with the fight over the Second Amendment, and we, the gun owners, are losing. Let us review some recent laws and proposed legislation that leads guns owners to believe that we are standing on a banana peel, aka the “slippery slope.”
Should you pass through the state of New Jersey with a 30-round magazine in the trunk of your car and get caught, you will become a felon, spend five years in prison and lose all your firearms. Seems rather harsh, doesn’t it, but “No one is coming to take your guns.”
A bill was introduced in the state Assembly by Democratic Assemblyman Felix Ortiz requiring the state’s residents to acquire liability insurance as a condition for gun ownership. It reads: “Any person who has not purchased insurance in compliance with the law within 30 days of its passing would be in violation of the law. Such an occurrence shall result in the immediate revocation of such owner’s registration, license, and any other PRIVILEGE (emphasis applied) to own such firearm.”
This liability insurance for $1 million in coverage is estimated to cost between $1,600 and $2,000 annually, but “no one is coming to take your guns.”
In Missouri, if HB545 gets passed into law, it would give owners of so-called “assault weapons” 90 days to turn them in to authorities, disable them, or ship them out of the state. Those who fail to do so could spend seven years in prison, become felons, and lose all their firearms. Are we standing on a “slippery slope,” Sam?
In Iowa, state Rep. Dan Muhlbauer said that the government should start confiscating semi-automatic rifles and other firearms. “We should ban those in Iowa,” he said, adding that such a ban should be applied retroactively. “We need to get them off the streets and even if you have them, I think we need to start taking them.”
In New York, Gov. Cuomo said: “Confiscation could be an option. Mandatory sale to the state could be an option.” Couple that arrogance with the NY SAFE Act that bans the sale of new and mandates registration of existing semi-automatics, deemed “assault” type, and “no one is coming to take your guns?” By the way, Sam, what follows the registration of firearms? In the 20th Century, gun registration led to confiscation in New Zealand, Canada, the U.K., Australia, California and Chicago.
How many states have laws mandating firearms be uniquely compliant? In other words, to sell a certain firearm in California, it has to have a myriad of “safety” and cosmetic features that other states don’t require. This adds greatly to the price, reduces availability in that state, and in smaller, less-populated states a manufacturer may not make the changes, and just forget that market for economic reasons. Voila! They have a gun ban without a nasty vote that may anger their ignorant electorate.
These are just a few examples of laws and proposed bills that are being pushed by governors and legislators across the United States. Look at the frenzy in Washington with President Obama, Uncle Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer and Dianne Feinstein to ban and register firearms. Sam, these are not folks at the local newspaper, gun shop or equipment store. These people run the country.
My friend, those who would disarm America are too smart to start kicking down doors. They would love nothing more, but then their true intent would be known. Instead, the Second Amendment will suffer a “death by a thousand cuts.” You say, “No one is coming to take your guns.” I say that they are doing it one cut at a time, but the end result will be the same.
Note: Help us stop the NY Safe Act. The fifth annual NYS Rifle and Pistol Association Lobby Day and Rally is in Albany on Thursday. Buses leave from the Oneonta Bus Lines from 8 to 8:30 a.m. Call Jim Losie for details at 432-6452.
CHUCK PINKEY is a retired area businessman. He can be reached at email@example.com. The views expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect those of The Daily Star and its editorial board, but the author thinks they ought to.