January 10 2013
Gov. Cuomo’s Assault on the Second Amendment.
Gov. Cuomo’s name frequently appears on lists of potential Democratic nominees for president in 2016. In yesterday’s over-the-top state of the state address, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo took the opportunity to call for more gun laws in a way that guaranteed he’d make the soundbite reel on the evening news:
“I know that the issue of gun control is hard. I know that it’s political. I know it’s controversial,” the governor said, his voice rising with every word. “I say to you, forget the extremists! It’s simple: no one hunts with an assault rifle! No one needs 10 bullets to kill a deer! Too many innocent people have died already! End this madness now!”
By the end of the speech, the governor was shouting.
“Pass safe, reasonable gun control in the State of New York! Make this state safer! Save lives! Set an example for the rest of the nation! Let them look at New York and say, ‘This is what you can do! This is what you should do!’ This is New York, the progressive capital, you should them how we lead! We can do it! We’ve done it before and we can do it again.”
He left the stage to deafening applause from the assembled lawmakers.
Memo to Gov. Cuomo: the Second Amendment is not about protecting the right to hunt. As National Review’s Kevin Williamson put it, “Power corrupts. Madison knew that, and the other Founders did, too, which is why we have a Second Amendment.” I encourage you to go read Williamson’s piece in its entirety, but here is a highlight:
The Second Amendment is not about Bambi and burglars — whatever a well-regulated militia is, it is not a hunting party or a sport-clays club. It is remarkable to me that any educated person — let alone a Harvard Law graduate — believes that the second item on the Bill of Rights is a constitutional guarantee of enjoying a recreational activity.
Furthermore, more gun laws will not address the problems of gun crime and gun violence. They only affect law-abiding citizens, who by definition will dutifully comply with the law—regardless of how inane it may be.
Criminals will not be deterred by new laws limiting magazine capacity. Further restrictions on gun sales will be of no consequence to the criminal that steals firearms or illegally traffics weapons across the border into the U.S. Confiscation of legally owned weapons will not reduce the presence of guns that are already possessed illegally.
People who want to keep their AR-15s are not extremists. The real extremists are Governor Cuomo and those of his ilk who seek to reduce the number of law-abiding gun owners and deny citizens their civil right to keep and bear arms specifically protected by the Constitution.