Dumb politicians on Gun Control

In the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting politicians raced to see if they could say or do more than the next one. Gov. Andrew Cuomo did more than most and has stuffed up more than most:

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo won the race to enact new gun restrictions following the Sandy Hook massacre, beating every other opportunistic, grandstanding politician in the country by signing a bill that was passed so fast legislators had no time to read it. One consequence of that unseemly haste, I noted a few days later, was that legislators forgot to exempt current and retired police officers from the new rule for magazines, which reduced the maximum number of rounds from 10 to seven (because, as Cuomo explained, “nobody needs 10 bullets to kill a deer”). The ensuing outrage at the lack of a double standard revealed not only that cops take their special rights for granted but also that they do not believe the magazine limit—which they support for “regular citizens”—will have any impact on criminals. Now Cuomo has noticed another problem: Before imposing his arbitrary ammunition limit, he did not bother to check on the availability of seven-round magazines. It turns out “there is no such thing as a seven-bullet magazine,” he said at a press conference yesterday. “That doesn’t exist. So you really have no practical option.” 

That’s a slight exaggeration. Seven-round magazines do exist, just as three-wheeled cars exist, but they are not standard. Last month the Rochester Democrat and Chroniclenoted that “gun manufacturers have not had much reason to make a magazine with fewer than 10 rounds, except for limited uses, because no state required it until now.” Based on interviews with gun dealers, the paper reported that “there are no manufacturers planning to make special seven-round magazines to serve the New York market.” The new magazine limit takes effect on April 15.

The governor’s solution: change the law so that people are once again allowed to buy 10-round magazines but make it illegal to put more than seven rounds in them. I swear I am not making that up; it is already the rule for previously owned 10-round magazines, which are legal as long as they contain seven or fewer rounds.

Stupid bloody politicians never understand that criminals don’t give a stuff about laws…that is why they are criminals.

Richard M. Aborn, president of the Citizens Crime Commission of New York City, objects to Cuomo’s proposed accommodation. “I think the governor and the Legislature got it right the first time,” he tells The New York Times. “We don’t want to have to tell the mother of a young man who’s just been shot and killed that he was killed with the ninth bullet.”

Stephen J. Aldstadt, president of the Shooters Committee on Political Education, also perceives a flaw in Cuomo’s proposal, which he calls “the most asinine thing I’ve ever heard.” But Aldstadt’s objection is somewhat different from Aborn’s. “Any person who is going to go commit a mass shooting like Columbine or Sandy Hook is certainly not going to pay attention to a law restricting magazines to seven rounds,” he says. “The only people who would possibly obey that law are legal gun owners, and they’re not your problem.”

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.