liamstliam: (Bear)
[personal profile] liamstliam

The short version here is that I am very concerned with the New York State Legislature’s rapid approval of a gun-control package.

I’ve said that it’s not the laws that concern me so much as the process did.

It’s not necessarily what they did. It’s how they did it.

In order to explain better, please understand that I am a fairly liberal, middle-aged white guy who does not own any guns but has no particularly strong opinion about gun control, other than it needs to be constitutional.

My thought on that is that it’s harder with the Second Amendment, in my opinion, in that it’s not a cut-and-dried as the First Amendment’s “Congress shall make no law . . . “ provision.

It seems to me that some of the things New York did and proposals the president put up the next day, will not survive court tests.

What did New York do?

It made it much easier to classify (and ban) a gun as an assault weapon. It made it illegal for a clip to hold more than seven rounds. It stiffened penalties for crimes using guns.

In addition, it mandated mental-health professionals to report individuals they feel could commit gun violence, and it forced anyone buying ammunition to register that purchase.

OK, we could argue some or all of those. Some, in my opinion are easier to argue against than others.

But the point here is how they did it.

The session started Monday afternoon, and before midnight, the Senate had voted 43-18 in favor of the bill. There was no debate, and the public never had a chance to see or comment on the bill.

The next day, the Assembly debated for five hours before approving it 104-43, and the governor signed the bill in time to make the 6 p.m. news.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo had declared “an emergency requiring the immediate waiver of the three-day waiting period before a vote.”

There was a concern, apparently, of protestors descending on the Capital if the Legislature didn’t get to act quickly.

Wait? People would not get to be heard?

People would not even be able to read the bill? How much time did senators have to read the bill?

People couldn’t contact their legislators with an opinion? (They already expressed their opinion, we were told. Well, I know I didn’t, though my legislators were at the front of the anti-bill movement because of the process.)

I remember well the stop-and-go, give-and-take over the same-gender marriage proposal. That was long and drawn-out, just as so many other bills have been.

Some folks have said, “Well, it was a good thing, so why worry?”

Well, they could do the same thing and vote to put casinos within 10 miles of my house. Or make major changes in school taxes. Or any of several other things.

We used to opine that New York law was made by “three guys in a room” 

This time it was “in the dead of night.”

I don't like all of it.

Date: 2013-01-17 09:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
There are parts that I particularly don't like. Such as making the people you're supposed to talk freely in front of, such as your doctor/therapist now your keeper in regards to guns. Most of them aren't trained to assess that sort of behavior, correctly. They can do it now on a par with coin tosses.

I think that following the rules we have now for gun purchases, for everybody is a good thing. There was a woman in Cohoes, who today, I think, bought a Bushmaster and ammo, and handed the weapon off to her husband, an ex-felon who wasn't supposed to have guns. The dealer saw it and called the police, and they were apprehended.

I wasn't so happy about the process. However, this is something they can do. It's not illegal. It is slimy.

But I've seen this sort of behavior before, it doesn't surprise me.
Edited Date: 2013-01-17 09:28 pm (UTC)

Every time I think on it...

Date: 2013-01-17 09:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
All I can come up with is "Cuomo 2016" :-\

I'm curious how (if this survives the courts) this will be enforced when in a year's time thousands of people will automatically become criminals.

Edited Date: 2013-01-17 09:36 pm (UTC)

Re: Every time I think on it...

Date: 2013-01-17 09:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
1 You're only a criminal if you're convicted. Due process and all that.

2 If you've got "illegal" magazines, don't wave them around. STFU about your "illegal" gun. If you don't go shooting up schools or malls, you won't get arrested, the police won't have a reason to search your home. Keep your nose clean. If you're already doing that, then you've got nothing to worry about. If you're really concerned, coat them in cosmoline or grease and put them in a plastic box, then put them in a wall or something. Be creative, then go buy legal magazines.

In the immortal words of Han Solo "Fly casual."

Sorry, but you are wrong. Jaji is right.

Date: 2013-01-18 12:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
As soon as you break the law, you are a criminal. No conviction, or even arrest, required.

And yes, it's a bad law, and a bad process.

Laws enacted in response to a single dramatic event are always bad laws.

Date: 2013-01-18 05:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm looking or my +1 button.

Re: Every time I think on it...

Date: 2013-01-17 09:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Jaji, those of us who watched the state of the state speech knew that already.

Re: Every time I think on it...

Date: 2013-01-17 09:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Also, that may be part of his plan. Make a big splash about the action he took, so that when the next elections come around, he can say he was the first in the country to do something.


Re: Every time I think on it...

Date: 2013-01-18 01:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
That's my thought.

Re: Every time I think on it...

Date: 2013-01-18 03:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
That could backfire if the law does not hold up in court. I would certainly make the case that he rushed in before thinking through the implications.
And lying low won't work for those who are legally registered; they know where we live and what we have.


Date: 2013-01-18 02:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Between Cuomo and Bloomberg, I have no desire to even set foot in NY anymore.

Date: 2013-01-18 05:37 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Because obviously the answer is to outlaw the tool that thousands of people own without consequence, not to address the mental illness that led to the gross misuse of aforementioned tool.
Edited Date: 2013-01-18 05:39 am (UTC)

Date: 2013-01-18 06:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
They are addressing mental health, in a ham-handed way.

Date: 2013-01-20 04:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I think the mental health piece is a slippery slope. An open discussion about the state of mental health in this country can certainly benefit usbut I forsee mass enfringements on their civil rights coming from this. Not all gun crimes are committed by the mentally ill and lumping them in with this bill makes it seem that way. I think of the kids I work with and any one of them could be Adam Lanza given the perfect storm of a day. Should they surrender their personal freedom because of what may happen? Should any of us? There's no fool proof way to judge if someone is a risk to society. As the hippa law stands now, providers have a duty to report when someone poses an immediate risk to themselves or others but even this isn't fool proof as people's moods change from moment to moment, even more so with someone with bipolar or someone suffering from hallucinations. NYs haphazard law to report dangerous people has no way of being enforced as there is no way to assess this regularly and accurately. It will only keep people from seeking help when they need it.
Edited Date: 2013-01-20 04:43 pm (UTC)

Date: 2013-01-18 03:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm not happy about either the process or the laws as written. Actions taken because they feel good emotionally almost never work out in the real world the way we would like them to 8(

It would have been a lot more...reasonably wait at least as long as gun buyers are required to wait, before voting on regulations which affect gun buyers.

But I'm a comedian, I'm hypervigilant about some forms of obvious, joke-prompting hypocrisy.


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