New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has been on the front lines of pushing restrictions on the Constitutionally protected right of American citizens to keep and bear arms. He championed the NY SAFE ACT, a law which is so riddled with illegal, unconstitutional, and unenforceable provisions that it more closely resembles Swiss Cheese than a proper law. And he continues to press every day for even more ways to keep guns out of the hands of the average person and ensure that only the wealthy and well connected can enjoy armed security guards. His latest push is another wonderful example of why the often repeated phrase “no one wants to take your guns” is completely false — he wants to take your guns.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he wants to take away all firearms from New Yorkers who are convicted of domestic violence crimes.
The Democrat announced the plan Wednesday as the first of the proposals he’ll unveil next month during his State of the State address that opens the 2018 legislative session.
Under Cuomo’s proposal, all guns would immediately be removed from anyone convicted of domestic violence crimes, including misdemeanors. He says his legislation would add measures aimed at keeping domestic violence perpetrators from obtaining firearms.
As others have pointed out, 18 U.S. Code § 922 already prohibits people convicted of domestic violence from purchasing or owning firearms. But Cuomo doesn’t stop there — he doesn’t want to simply make ownership illegal, he apparently wants to send the police door-to-door confiscating firearms from these prohibited persons.
That’s something which is possible in New York, at least for handguns. All handguns must be registered within the state, meaning the police already have a handy list of handgun owners they can check against the NICS system to identify prohibited persons and go confiscate their guns. For rifles that’s much more difficult, since there is no state registry. It wasn’t immediately clear whether Cuomo is proposing visiting every person convicted of domestic violence and searching their home for firearms, but that’s pretty much the only way possible to accomplish what he’s demanding here.
On its face this doesn’t seem too concerning. “These are people who are already prohibited from owning guns. And they were convicted of domestic violence. Screw ’em. Doesn’t impact me.” But this could be the start of a slippery slope. If door-to-door confiscation from those convicted of domestic violence becomes commonplace, what’s to stop New York from expanding that list of “prohibited persons” to include other “indicators of violence?” Would it really be that far of a stretch to think that Cuomo might one day do the same thing to people arrested for assault? How about any misdemeanor crime, including carrying silly string?
As much as the “slippery slope” argument is dismissed by the gun control crowd, the reality is that it’s an excellent illustration of how we got to this point. From the National Firearms Act to the Hughes Amendment we lost machine guns. From the Gun Control Act of 1968 to Obama’s executive orders we lost kitchen counter FFLs. We see this happen every year, and now Cuomo wants to push us a little further down that slope it seems.