New Jersey Passes Gun Confiscation Law with no Plans on How to Carry it Out
New Jersey just gave us a good illustration of why passing new gun laws seldom deliver what they promise. In this case, legislators of the Garden State passed a new gun confiscation law with no plans on how to carry it out.
Thomas Lifson of American Thinker notes New Jersey’s gun-control enthusiasts and lawmakers are like “the dog that chased a bus and managed to clamp its jaw on the bumper. Now what?”
The law, Governor Phil Murphy signed earlier in the year gave gun owners of the state who owned magazines capable of carrying more than 10 rounds 180 days to alter them or see them confiscated.
With the law set to go into effect next week the state’s Attorney General has provided no guidance to state or local law enforcement on how to ensure to proceed.
Previously, the National Rifle Association challenged the law on behalf of Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs but the Third Circuit Court of Appeals upheld it.
If local and state authorities follow a pattern seen around the country, the law will only be enforced when the owner of the now illegal magazine is arrested on a more serious charge such as armed robbery.
Again, we see the reason most “supposed” fixes to the system are flawed.
Since it will only be enforced after the crime it is supposed to prevent, New Jersey’s new law will not encourage respect for the law by criminals since they have no respect for the law.
Worse yet, gun owners who are otherwise law-abiding citizen but do not turn over previously legal weapons will commit a felony even if using one for self-defense.
End result – criminals don’t care and peaceable gun owners, unaware of the law, go to jail.
Almost every modern compact or full-size handgun and rifle sold in the United States can use magazines that can hold over 10 rounds of ammunition. That means every legal gun owner in the state has the potential of owning a weapon that is now illegal unless modified.
New Jersey’s State Police will comment on his plans to enforce the law. A State Police spokesman told the Washington Free Beacon the law was a statewide effort directed by the Attorney General.
“We will enforce the law of the state,” said Lieutenant Theodore Schaffer of the New Jersey State Police. “That’s our plan.”
When asked for plans on how the law might be enforced, Schaefer offered no detail but instead referred reporters to the attorney general’s office for further questions.
Leland Moore, public information officer for the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General had fewer answers than the State Police. When asked if the state’s top law enforcement agency has any guidance for how to target those who own the outlawed magazines, Moore refused to comment.
That isn’t surprising since gun-rights activists estimate the number of New Jersey residents who fit that category to over a million.
When reporters pressed the question about what would happen to that million or so legal gun owners, there was no answer. Asked if law officers would be ordered to conduct “door to door” confiscation efforts, Moore refused to comment.
Obama appointee, Judge Patty Schwartz wrote for the majority in the Third Circuit ruling, “Today we address whether one of New Jersey’s responses to the rise in active and mass shooting incidents in the United States… violates the Second Amendment, the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause, and the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause… 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.”
Trump appointee, Judge Stephanos Bibas dissented writing, “The Second Amendment is an equal part of the Bill of Rights. And the Supreme Court has repeatedly told us not to treat it differently… Here, the government has offered no concrete evidence that magazine restrictions have saved or will save potential victims.”
Scott Bach, head of the Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs promised to appeal the decision. He said the decision that turns one million law-abiding citizens into felons for keeping property they obtained legally is “just plain wrong.”
Now that New Jersey’s Governor and Attorney General have the gun rights bus bumper in their grasp – what now? They authorized a law with no idea how to enforce it. Once gain, honest gun owners are caught in the middle.