Gun Confiscation Begins in New Jersey
President Obama and President Trump were both right, Obama when he told us elections have consequences and Trump in his 2018 stump speech that a consequence of Democrat victories would be renewed attacks on the Second Amendment. New Jersey’s ban on high-capacity magazines has been upheld by a federal court, opening the door to door knock gun confiscation and making off-duty police officers subject to criminal prosecution. The inmates are officially running the asylum.
This law is one of those “sensible restrictions” on gun ownership that liberals like to talk about but that criminals will ignore as the judge who ruled the law constitutional says that despite the asterisk put next to the Second Amendment by the court assures us there is nothing to worry about:
The law, signed by Gov. Phil Murphy in June along with five other new gun laws, gave New Jersey gun owners who currently possess the magazines in question 180 days to either surrender them, permanently modify them to only accept up to 10 rounds, or transfer them to somebody who is allowed to legally own them. The deadline is set to expire on Monday.
A lawsuit brought by the Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs and supported by the National Rifle Association failed on Thursday as the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals declared the confiscation law constitutional. Any civilian caught in possession of a magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds may be arrested and prosecuted. Possession of such magazines after the deadline will be considered a crime of the fourth degree under state law and carry up to 18 months in prison and up to $10,000 in fines or both.
Nearly all modern full-size or compact handguns and rifles sold in the United States come standard with magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition…
Judge Patty Shwartz, an Obama appointee, wrote for the majority that the law serves a legitimate public safety purpose…
"Today we address whether one of New Jersey's responses to the rise in active and mass shooting incidents in the United States -- a law that limits the amount of ammunition that may be held in a single firearm magazine to no more than ten rounds -- violates the Second Amendment, the Fifth Amendment's Takings Clause, and the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause," she wrote. "We conclude that it does not. New Jersey's law reasonably fits the State's interest in public safety and does not unconstitutionally burden the Second Amendment's right to self-defense in the home. The law also does not violate the Fifth Amendment's Takings Clause because it does not require gun owners to surrender their magazines but instead allows them to retain modified magazines or register firearms that have magazines that cannot be modified. Finally, because retired law enforcement officers have training and experience that makes them different from ordinary citizens, the law's exemption that permits them to possess magazines that can hold more than ten rounds does not violate the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause."
That’s not the opinion of Bergen County Prosecutor Dennis Calo, who warns that even police officers have become instant felons under the new law:
The new law that limits gun magazines to 10 rounds went into effect on Dec. 10 without the legislature taking up the amendment to create an exception for law enforcement officers.
Modern firearms issued to patrol officers generally hold 12 or more rounds of ammunition.
That means that just about all law enforcement officers in New Jersey will be breaking the law if they carry their assigned duty weapons while off duty, including just being home with them, unless they live outside of the state or leave their magazines behind at work, rendering the weapons near-useless.
Bergen County Prosecutor Dennis Calo issued a memorandum to local police officials on Dec. 13 reminding everyone that the prohibition of the possession of large-capacity ammunition magazines also applied to off-duty law enforcement officers.
“The statute now provides that law enforcement officers are not permitted to possess large capacity ammunition magazines, i.e. magazines capable of holding more than ten (10) rounds of ammunition to be fed continuously into semi-automatic firearms, unless while on duty or traveling to or from an authorized place of duty,” the memo read.
“This statute applies to all law enforcement officers, including those subject to on-call status. Violation of this statute constitutes a fourth degree crime,” the memo continued. “There is legislation pending to amend the statute to permit law enforcement officers possession of large capacity magazines. We will keep you informed if and when the statute is amended.”
It was former New York Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik who leaked via a tweet the memo containing the warning to police while condemning the law and court ruling as “insane”:
Kerik tweeted a leaked memo to law enforcement signed by Acting Bergen County Prosecutor Dennis Calo, which said violating the law would result in a fourth-degree crime.
Kerik said Sunday on Fox & Friends that the law is not only "outrageous," it also puts officers at risk.
"You're taking the ability away from the cops to possess the rounds they may need in a gun battle... That's insane," he said.
The law applies to New Jersey residents as well as off-duty officers, and Kerik said Murphy has essentially taken guns "away from the people" of the state.
"It's one thing if you violate a rule of a department," Kerik added. "But this is a law. A criminal law, and it makes you, then, a criminal. So, this is just crazy."
NJ State Police refuses to rule out house-to-house enforcement of the high capacity magazine ban, reports Breitbart.com:
The NJ State Police refused to rule out house-to-house checks. Rather, they responded: “We do not discuss enforcement strategies.”
Breitbart News also reached out to Gov. Phil Murphy’s (D) press secretary Daniel Bryan about enforcement of the ban. As of the publication of this article Bryan had not ruled out house-to-house enforcement of the ban either.
Which part of “shall not be infringed” does the Third Circuit not understand? Assault is a behavior and not a particular weapon or an ammo clip. Ever since Cain slew Abel with a rock, it has been the desire to kill which motivates evil. Buildings are blown up with fertilizer bombs. Marathons are blasted with pressure cooker bombs, trolls in southern France turn to tragedy through the use of, dare I say it, a high-capacity rental truck. Cars careen down New York parkways mowing down joggers and pedestrians.
Las Vegas concerts and Florida schools become free-fire zones not due to high capacity magazines but from the secular culture liberals have created absent a true moral compass. Gun-free zones, bullet bans, and other “sensible restrictions” merely create more potential victims.
Yes, high capacity magazines have been used in mass shootings. But they have also been used to stop them. Take the AR-15, the poster weapon used by liberals to fight for gun control. Former Navy SEAL Dean Raso is quoted in The Federalist as describing the AR-15 as in fact the ideal defensive weapon against heavily armed predators:
In the wake of the Orlando terrorist attack, the deadliest strike on U.S. soil since 9/11, Democratic lawmakers and progressive activists have responded by attempting to limit access to firearms -- particularly the AR-15, which was incorrectly reported as the weapon the terrorist used to kill at least 49 people and injure another 53.
In a new video, former Navy SEAL Dom Raso explains why the AR-15, the most popular rifle in the country, gives Americans the best chance of surviving in an age of terror.
Choosing to defend one’s home with an AR-15 is a commonsense choice, as it is powerful, accurate, and easy to shoot, Raso said.
Gun control legislation doesn’t stop terror attacks, he explained, citing the two terrorists who weren’t deterred by California’s assault weapons ban when they killed 14 people in San Bernardino last year. Nor would any gun ban have stopped the Boston Bombers when they detonated a bomb at the Boston Marathon, killing three and wounding at least 260 others.
Ironically, both of those incidents of terror were brought to a stop by armed police officers responding to the scene with AR-15s -- the same weapon legislators are trying to ban.
“Why would you want to ban the gun you pray for police to show up with?” Raso asked.
Critics of the Second Amendment say that they are not going after guns used for legitimate activities such as hunting. But when the Founders wrote the Second Amendment it was because the British were coming, not because it was the start of deer season. As Fox News contributor Judge Andrew Napolitano notes:
The historical reality of the Second Amendment's protection of the right to keep and bear arms is not that it protects the right to shoot deer," wrote Judge Andrew Napolitano recently in the Washington Times. "It protects the right to shoot tyrants, and it protects the right to shoot at them effectively, with the same instruments they would use upon us. If the Jews in the Warsaw ghetto had had the firepower and ammunition that the Nazis had, some of Poland might have stayed free and more persons would have survived the Holocaust."
The AR-15, like other high-capacity weapons in the hands of the law-abuiding, is a defensive weapon, such as when it was used by a 15-year-old who grabbed his father’s AR-15 and used it to ward off home invaders:
Not only did this brave 15-year-old defend his home against 2 burglars, but also his 12-year-old sister who was in the house with him. He grabbed his father’s AR-15 and shot one of the burglars multiple times. They got away but had to go right to the hospital where the minor was arrested and the adult who was shot was flown to a different hospital.
In the hands of British redcoats, the musket was an assault weapon. In the hands of a law-abiding American, an AR-15 is what the Second Amendment is all about. Praise the Lord and pass the high-capacity magazine.
Daniel John Sobieski is a freelance writer whose pieces have appeared in Investor’s Business Daily, Human Events, Reason Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.