One of the favorite tools anti-gun politicians use to erode the Second Amendment is overly restrictive local ordinances. The U.S. Supreme Court in recent years overturned a number of these laws banning handgun ownership in Washington D.C. and Chicago. When the court issues a ruling, it carries national weight, and that has many anti-gun politicians in New York City and other parts of the nation that still have these kinds of local restrictions worried.
New York City officials recently enacted a massively restrictive gun law that made it virtually impossible to transport a lawfully owned pistol or other firearm outside the home. The New York City law banned owners of licensed handguns from removing a locked and unloaded pistol from the address listed on the license. The only exceptions were to travel to a nearby authorized small arms ranges or designated shooting club.
The problem is, authorized small arms ranges and shooting clubs are not plentiful in New York City. A quick check shows a total of two small arms ranges in New York City. While the search is not an exhaustive one, it illustrates a clear problem – a city with 8.6 million residents, two lawful shooting ranges are not sufficient to ensure continued expertise in handling firearms.
It means local residents most likely will suffer diminished shooting skills and reduce their safe handling of firearms. It also makes it much harder to teach the next generation how to properly handle and shoot firearms and use them for the best purpose: self-defense and preservation of life.
As initially enacted, the New York City law meant you could not use your firearm for self-defense outside the home, or transport your pistol to a second residence. So, if you have a home in New York City and a second home elsewhere, the city banned you from transporting your locked and unloaded pistol from one residence to another.
You would have to have firearms registered at both locations to lawfully have firearms in each resident for self-defense. That also means while one residence is empty, it has firearms that burglars might find tempting to steal – especially if a city registry lists that location as one with firearms.
The New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, along with private individuals, challenged the city’s draconian firearms law, and the Supreme Court is poised to take up the matter. With the court leaning toward a 5-4 conservative majority, anti-gun liberal politicians in New York City are trying to avert a likely ruling that would work against their intent.
Instead of making it harder to transport legally owned handguns – even when unloaded and locked, a Supreme Court ruling likely would have the opposite effect by overturning the city law.
With their blatant effort at undermining the Second Amendment now threatened with a potential ruling likely favorable toward gun owners, anti-gunners in New York City backed off their stringent law. They now say oral arguments scheduled in December are not needed, because the city changed the controversial law. Now, licensed gun owners legally can transport their arms to second homes and shooting ranges outside city limits.
With the law changed to appease gun owners and avoid a federal ruling against them, the city attorneys are scrambling to cancel the December hearing before the Supreme Court. They know they overstepped, and future laws with similar intent likely would be struck down by the current court.
They hope, instead, to rid the White House of President Donald Trump and to win a majority in the Senate. They also seek to remove recently appointed Justice Brett Kavanaugh, in order to tilt the court back to the left. Fortunately, such overstepping by anti-gun politicians has clarified what is at stake in the next general election: freedom to choose, versus erosion of individual rights. The Second Amendment ranks second only to free speech for a reason – one often goes hand-in-hand with the other. Eroding one right leads to the erosion of the other, as well as more down the road. Ultimately, that leads to totalitarian rule, which preceding generations affirmed is not the American Way and never will be.