New York Senate Democrat Leadership in Albany continues to prove just how out-of-touch they are with reality. On Tuesday, amidst a pandemic that continues to rage, the Senate Majority passed “ghost gun” legislation on an almost straight party line vote.
S.13, by Sen. Anna Kaplan, and S.14, by Sen. Brad Hoylman, would attach felony penalties to anyone who sells, transfers or exchanges incomplete frames or receivers. For transferring a hunk of metal, an honest citizen could be faced with some of the stiffest penalties under law. These bills passed the Senate last year, however they did not clear the Assembly in 2020.
“Ghost gun” is an invented term intended to scare. Ghosts are imaginary, and so is the problem this bill is trying to address. There is scant evidence that these types of firearms are used in crimes in New York. Criminals are not interested in costly equipment and the time consuming and laborious process of manufacturing their own firearms like hobbyists when they can simply remove serial numbers by defacing crime guns. The issue is really a non-issue, considering that in 2019 Attorney General Letitia James put out a decree forbidding online retailers from selling unfinished receivers in New York. Out-of-state FFLs simply won’t ship to New York. Ultimately, this week’s legislative action is only about grandstanding and political pandering.
The real problem in New York has become the growing crime rate as a result of failed policies and laws coming from anti-gun politicians dating back to the completely ineffective 2013 SAFE Act. Crime in New York City has spiked this year as a result of “bail reform” and the Left’s continued efforts to defund law enforcement. While New York has gone soft on criminals, they have continued to persecute law-abiding gun owners. New Yorkers are headed for the exits. Roughly 1.5 million state residents have packed up and headed for greener pastures since Gov. Andrew Cuomo was first elected.
The Legislature has once again creatively pivoted away from focusing on real problems and instead is deflecting and pretending there is a ghost gun problem.