Firearm Fear and Loathing In New Jersey

By Tom M.

I recently moved back to New Jersey from Pennsylvania to be closer to friends and family in addition to personal reasons. I wanted to share with you what gun control advocates mean when they say “common sense gun controls” . . .

I’ve attached a picture of a book written by Evan Nappen, a New Jersey firearms law expert. In order to exercise my constitutional right to keep and bear arms in the Garden State, I need a 385-page book to navigate the random, complex, capricious and confusing legal architecture of New Jersey’s gun control leviathan.

The number of ways any one of us can end up in prison is staggering.

Please, we need to make sure everyone understands what is at stake here. Go vote in 2014! For New Jersey, it’s 2013! We need to keep the Democrats out of the governor’s office. I’d rather have a RHINO like Christe than the alternative. We can live to fight another day.


  1. avatar LJM says:

    The only “common sense” gun law was drafted 221 years ago, contains 27 words, 3 punctuation marks and was written by far better men than exist today.

    1. avatar Tom M. says:


    2. avatar Hannibal says:

      …and if they’d known what sort of confusion would result, they would have done a clearer job of wording it so that even an idiot could understand it.

      1. avatar DavidT says:

        I would say it’s very clear to anyone with an elementary school education in the English language. The first half, the part the gun banners like to harp on, is obviously a subordinate clause, giving a, but not the only, reason for the meaning of the rest of the sentence. The second half, which carries the full meaning of the sentence, is very clear and can stand on its own, unlike the subordinate clause. To see what I mean try to make 2 separate sentences out of it, like so: “A well regulated military, being necessary to a free state.” is not a complete thought, perhaps an answer to a question, but not a complete sentence. The second half: “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” is a complete sentence, expressing a thought and meaning, it can stand alone without the first half, and thus gives the meaning of the whole sentence. Very simple and something that anyone who made it to high school in this country should be able to understand, especially those who claim to be intellectuals (Most of the left).

        1. avatar Chip says:

          It is very clear. There are two parts to the Amendment, the Militia and the People, and neither of them shall be infringed.

        2. avatar Accur81 says:

          Excellent grammar, sir.

        3. avatar Jason says:

          If they can reference the introductory clause and convince people that the main clause is dependent on it (rather than the intended dependency), then I think that proves it’s not perfectly clear.
          I would have preferred wording more similar to the 1st amendment:
          “Congress shall pass no law restricting the right to keep and bear arms.”

          Of course even better solutions:
          Require 75% agreement (or higher) to pass a law. Banned: murder, rape, assault, theft, etc. Not banned: gun ownership, or other victimless “crimes”.

          Ban government education. That’s where the notion that government is a good thing, rather than the biggest threat to our individual liberty, as the founders believed, came from.

        4. avatar Aragorn says:

          Actually it is not clear at all.
          It is worded in a way that common sense was thought to be widespread which it
          was for that time period.

          Look around you and it should be obvious common sense is on the decline as is the US as a world power and viable country.

        5. avatar Rich Grise says:

          I was in some other “discussion” group and asked, “What part of Shall Not Be Infringed” do you not understand?” The grabber tool responded, “What part of “Well-regulated Militia” do you not understand?”
          I responded, “The part where people twist its meaning around such that it changes the meaning of “shall not be infringed” to “may be infringed at the whim of whoever’s in power at the moment.””

          I haven’t heard back from him yet.

      2. avatar KAT says:

        If they had known then what we know now, they would have included as the last sentence “whether it is agreeable or not”
        In fact each & every amendment should have had that added for those who do not understand, like the 10 Commandments, you do not get to pick just the ones you personally like.

      3. avatar Jus Bill says:

        At the time it was written very few non-aristocratic (i.e., not rich) people in America could read or write. The Bill of Rights was primarily spread by word of mouth, so it had to be written simply and clearly.

        On the other hand, there were no “talking heads” to tell them what to think, so one made up their own mind after thought and discussion.

        Unlike today…

  2. avatar great unknown says:

    Tactically, you are correct. Strategically, not so much [IMHO]. Voting for RINOs only lets a bad situation fester and degenerate slowly – e.g., your telephone book of gun laws. Vote in Democrats across the board, as liberal as possible. In ten years or less, the entire State of NJ will look like Detroit does now.

    That’s when real libertarians can move in and pick up the pieces.

    1. avatar Tom M. says:

      Although I don’t like to think about it I feel like you are right. The people in New Jersey (and the United States) need to be hit in the face with the consequences of their votes.

      Seeing their entire local or national economy crumble into government managed dust would help true Libertarians or Constitutional Conservatives get elected.

      Also, I’m only 25. I’ll fight the good fight for about as long as it takes me to get married and have children. I don’t foresee myself raising my kids in New Jersey. I want them to be born in the United States.

    2. avatar Hal J. says:

      And how likely is it that real libertarians are going to move in and pick up the pieces in Detroit?

      1. avatar Thomas Paine says:

        well, when you don’t have a police force and have to pay for private security, you become an anarcho-capitalist by default.

        1. avatar great unknown says:

          Turns out that getting a gun license in Detroit these days is not very difficult.

          IIRC, you can have a gun at home [where it is really necessary in Detroit] with no license at all. Recently, there were a few DGUs there that made the hit parade.

          When it’s not worth fighting to control the scraps, the libruls pack up and move elsewhere.

      2. avatar Pascal says:

        Exactly, not when you have over 51% on govt assistance and who can vote. Those labor unions still want their full pensions no matter what and have gone to court to take it back.

        Not going to happen.

      3. avatar Wiregrass says:

        Not Detroit, but still Michigan, Justin Amash is a start.

      4. avatar Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

        When the leeches flee or starve to death, it might be worth rebuilding.

        ObPost: paying taxes to NJ directly supports those who would take away your rights.

      5. avatar Alex says:

        “Detroit’s city government may be in shambles financially, but the citizens of Detroit are showing what happens when people are given their liberty back.”:

        Karen De Coster blogs about Detroit’s anarcho rebirth:

    3. avatar Jason says:

      Are you planning to build a small town in a valley, somewhere in the Rockies, for us to ride out the crash? We can convince all the freedom-loving productive people to go there, to make the system crash quicker.

  3. avatar Tom jones says:

    Lol stay in pa nj is a lost cause. All my friends and family from nj want to come here in pa to shoot guns.

    1. avatar Mr. Pierogie says:

      Stay out of NJ. This state will be worse than Illinois or DC sooner or later. I wish I could say stay and fight, but there are too many leftist judges here who can’t understand the Constitution. I’m postponing buying any “evil” rifles until after I move out. I was planning on building a decent AR, but if I put on the wrong flash hider, or if I get the right one but it’s not welded on, as well as a stock that’s not permanently pinned, I could be facing jail time for having an assault weapon! Total paranoia, NJ is a lost cause.

      1. avatar m11_9 says:

        IL is not great, but it is nowhere near what NJ is described as.

        We may have owner registration, and strict unlawful use felonies (new CCW coming soon) but zero mag bans or semi-auto bans, except a handful of local ordinances. Its not that bad here.

        1. avatar Mr. Pierogie says:

          No CCW in NJ. Not now, not ever.

    2. avatar neiowa says:

      Absolutely. NJ is a tiny little cowpie of a state. Live in Eastern Pa and drive to NJ is forced (at gunpoint).

  4. avatar Alex says:

    I grew up in Hunterdon County New Jersey and still have my firearm ID card that I received in 1993. I look at it from time to time and laugh (I live in florida now). Yes…it’s a difficult state to live in if you have a passion for firearms. Good luck on the elections!

    1. avatar Tom M. says:

      You (possibly) committed a Class-4 Felony (1.5 years in prison) by not turning in your FID.

      The book says its ambiguous, but they could arrest you if they wanted to.


      1. avatar miserylovescompany says:

        I think you mean a FOID?
        My opinion though, is that NJ can go to Hell. I honestly wish and hope (although I know better) that my sister and her husband had one that they can keep as a memento of what they escaped from. Even if they don’t realize it yet.

        1.5 years for not turning in a stupid piece of paper from a state you no longer live in…the very idea.

  5. avatar Don says:

    I’m going to be staying in NJ for a few days (unfortunately). I was planning on bringing my marlin 1894 lever rifle for home protection. My understanding thus far is that even in NJ, a lever action rifle cased in the trunk with (non-hollow point) ammo separate is legal. Where I will be staying is private property and no issues with the owner. Are my notions of what is legal in NJ correct?

    1. avatar chuck (slave to nj) says:

      I’m not a lawyer or expert but if you do bring it make sure the ammo is in a seperate locked container to help avoid any issues. Also I would recommend you bring your own ammo most places I purchase from record my FID number.

    2. avatar chuck (slave to nj) says:

      Also I would recommend calling the police in the town your staying in and check with them about the requirements.

      1. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

        Yeah, about that: That strategy didn’t work so well for Brian Aitken.

        1. avatar chuck (slave to nj) says:

          That was a screwed up situation where he was railroaded by a judge that let an ex cop go in a different case because the prosecution couldn’t prove his farm animals didn’t enjoy the special loving. But either way it wouldn’t be a bad idea to call and see what they’re looking for

  6. avatar Kyle says:

    This legal situation, sadly, exists even without regards to guns. There are all sorts of obscure laws on the books that could mean you are violating the law. They say the average person breaks the law multiple times a day in minor ways. Police officers say that if they follow a person long enough (while driving), that generally, that person will eventually do something that gives the police officer the legal authority to pull that person over. It is one of the main reasons why you should never talk to the police, because you can inadvertently admit to violating the law in some obscure fashion.

  7. avatar chuck (slave to nj) says:

    Welcome to nj make sure to get ur shackles at the entrance. Their for your own good we can’t have the slaves rising up.

  8. avatar Wishes to remain Anonymous says:

    Mr. Nappen is an excellent lawyer. His other book was provided to me free of charge, upon paying for his services; he even signed it. Mr. Nappen truly cares about our constitutional rights.

  9. avatar Ken says:

    Damn you should have moved to Ridley or Prospect Park.

  10. avatar Mike says:

    We are leaving next to head back to North Carolina. I should have stayed away from NJ when I left for the service in 97!

  11. avatar Jim R says:

    So what’s the difference between an anti-gun RINO and an anti-gun Democrat? The R/D?

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      Don’t the very names that you used tell you the difference? An anti-gun Democrat is a Democrat. An anti-gun Republican isn’t a Republican, he’s a traitor.

  12. I left NJ many years ago and never looked back.

    1. avatar bontai Joe says:

      I left too, but return everyday to work there.

    2. avatar Ralph says:

      @Homeguntraining, how long did it take to get the smell of NJ out of your clothes?

  13. avatar digdouggler says:

    Welcome Tom M, my condolences to your firearms freedom upon entering New Jersey.

    There’s a good community of NJ gunnies and active discussions at:

    Also consider joining the NJ 2nd Amendment Society (NJ2AS):

  14. avatar Scott D. says:

    3 Years of NJ free living. I should have done it a lot sooner.

  15. avatar BLAMMO says:

    May I extend a sincere invitation to the Empire State. Because misery loves company.

    1. avatar miserylovescompany says:

      Ha…..I most certainly do not live in NY, even though it its by all accounts pretty damn miserable. But thanks for the left-handed pun 😉

  16. avatar ValleyForge77 says:

    Solution: Come back to PA, my friend. You are behind enemy lines. Nanny states are for liberals and sheep who want the government to tell them what size soda they can drink, which cars they can drive, which constitutional freedoms they can enjoy – and which ones are ‘inappropriate’ and would be better traded for the ‘promise’ of a ‘little more safety’ from our dear leaders.

  17. avatar Taco Ninja says:

    You moved to New Jersey….on purpose? Pennsylvania is by far a nicer state… I go hunting there every year.

  18. avatar Rich Grise says:

    There is no “H” word in “Republican In Name Only.”

  19. avatar Toasty says:

    Yes we need a book just to be a gun owner here in NJ… Don’t make fun of us. But it is horrible. Unless you want to end up like us, don’t give those fuckbags an inch on anything. Permits for everything, NO-issue CCW ANYWHERE; even in the country/rural areas and all gun laws are a felony. A BB gun and a machine gun are treated the same. Stop at McDonalds after the range? 7 years in jail. Yup, illegal to have a gun anywhere but the range or your house. Period. NJ’s gun laws are written as such: All firearms are illegal period without a CCW (which aren’t issued to anyone that’s not a politician, judge or member of the political elite) and there are a litany of exceptions including your home, gun shop or the range etc… if you have a regular possession permit (FPID). Outside of that, you’re a felon, and have no gun rights, no voting rights, life ruined forever. And by the way, our liberal masters think this is way to loose. Be vigilant cause they’re coming for you next.

  20. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:

    Here it is:

    Iowa’s gun laws. All 15 pages.

    1. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:

      Plus 7 pages of administrative rules, if you want to get technical.

  21. avatar Talis says:

    From one Jersey boy to another, man do yourself a favor and move back out! Fat Ass Chris Christie is almost under the sheets with the libs and all you hold dear is in hot water. The laws there are simply archaic, and unless you know a state-y you can kiss all your guns goodbye. Hell I know a few local cops and even they couldn’t help me out. Ended up moving to AZ on a whim and never looked back.

  22. avatar Pat says:

    Just make sure you have your guns, regardless of the laws.
    Better judged by twelve than carried by six.
    Shoot, shovel, shut up.

  23. avatar Jeff Lynch says:

    Tom my friend,

    You may want to consider moving to the Republic of Texas. Our “gun laws” fill only a 12 page pamphlet and most of it is written in plain Texan (think English with a drawl). Most folks here own several firearms, practice frequently at one of many ranges and teach their children how to shoot before they can drive. Oh, by the way, we have no state income tax and our legislature meets for 4 months every 2 years!

    The weather is warm and the women are hot (I may have that backwards) and people still salute the flags (US and Texas). We work hard, play hard and laugh hard. On Sundays, we go to church and then watch football (TAMU of course). We have a few of them “libralls” but corral them in Austin for most of the time. We let ’em out for the summers if they behave themselves.

    Come down and visit anytime. I’ve lived in NJ and will never go back!

    Col. Benjamin Franklin Terry (aka Jeff Lynch)

  24. avatar amazed says:

    Wow, what the rest of the world should do is herd all you gun lovers onto a large island without any laws, forget about the island for 5 years and then revisit it to see how many of you bozos are left alive. Talking about an outdated document, written by men who used piss pots in their bedrooms..jeez

    1. avatar NotAmazed says:

      currious how quickly a good lefty wants to create a GULAG for those he does not agree with… The Soviets made damn sure that all guns were confiscated, then they proceeded to put newly disarmed people in prison camps because they did not follow the new rules. To the “amazed”, would be concentration camp aficionado, he can note that 100 years ago the number of laws limiting gun possession in America were quite few, the population was much poorer in every sense, but the homicide rate was about the same. Murder within any given society is not related to gun laws, as societies where guns are prohibited tend to have a much greater rate of murder committed by other means. Homicide rates, however, vary by country, so comparing any two vastly different societies, number by number, is meaningless. Suffice it to say that no one has ever found clear correlation between strict or fully prohibitive gun laws within any given country and a statistically significant decrease in homicide rates

      1. avatar Rich Grise says:

        I think it’s not only silly, but possibly dangerous, to get caught up in the “debate.” The Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms Shall Not Be Infringed.

        That should be our “mantra.” Any discussion of “legal” infringements is smoke and mirrors. The question we should be asking is, “Do you support the Constitution of the United States, or are you a traitor?

Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

button to share on facebook
button to tweet
button to share via email