Opinion by Alan J. Chwick & Joanne D. Eisen
New York – -(AmmoLand.com)- History shows us that the government’s goal is to disarm its citizens.
“Common sense” gun laws touted by our progressive Democrats continue to aim us towards that disarmament. But the recent United States Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision on NYSPRA v. Bruen reaffirms that our Constitution codifies the natural Right of self-defense, making the government’s goal of civilian disarmament virtually impossible to reach. They are pulling out their hair and straining to find loopholes and go-arounds.
Historically, we have gained new firearm-owning friends, so, to those 13+M new friends, we say HELLO and WELCOME ABOARD! You have made a thoughtful and courageous decision to opt-in for self-defense. In so doing, you joined your strengths with ours in the cause of SAFETY. And you understand that self-defense and the Second Amendment are intimately intertwined with FREEDOM.
Our new firearm friends, about 13,800,000, purchased their first guns during 2020 (8.4M) and 2021 (5.4M), per the NSSF. The main reason was home defense, and the second reason was self-defense. They instinctively understood that firearms would improve their odds of survival in this increasingly violent society, so they thoughtfully chose to arm themselves. Our new friends grabbed personal control back from our rogue government.
On June 23, 2022, SCOTUS struck down the remnants of New York State’s “May Issue” portion of the 1911 Sullivan Law, so now the ‘May Issue’ jurisdictions in the entire country must switch to ‘Shall Issue.’ Now, the ‘May Issue’ states must stop demanding a ‘proof of need’ for self-defense greater than an average person’s need.
Justice Thomas doubled down on the 2A Right to self-defense in the 6-3 decision, and Justice Alito’s decision concurred, “the Second Amendment protects the right of law-abiding people to carry a gun outside the home for self-defense and … the Sullivan Law, which makes self-defense with a firearm virtually impossible for most New Yorkers, is unconstitutional.”
Justice Breyer, in his dissent, said that “government interests” in public safety might be “compelling” and that the Court should “consider the serious dangers and consequences of gun violence.” Breyer was concerned with “gun violence,” but he thinks that government can heavily regulate civilian-owned firearms without harming the Second Amendment. But, Breyer seems to have tunnel vision. In New York State and several other states, the heavy government regulations made it nearly impossible to defend oneself and family legally. And their regulations do not ‘control’ criminals.
We American firearms owners will not voluntarily disarm because we fully understand that the presence of defensive guns in society far outweighs the negatives.
We are not afraid of our firearms, we respect them, and we believe the attempts to disarm us are counterproductive. The government’s agenda includes the use of fear, and it harms the Constitution and needlessly divides Americans. At the very least, those failed attempts to create a huge black market for weapons.
For a moment, let’s ignore our Constitution and ask a critical question, “How can we know if firearms are a benefit or a negative in our society?”
One way to find this out is to know the number of defensive gun uses (DGUs) in the population annually. If DGUs are on the high side, it becomes obvious that civilian gun ownership benefits society.
If DGUs are lower, the number of accidents and criminal gun use appears to be greater. People would not want firearms around because they can be dangerous. For example, your child might come across Hunter Biden’s discarded gun in a trash can and not know how to handle it. And folks might begin to think that any gun was a danger to them and family.
The way to find out about DGUs is to survey the public, but many DGUs go unreported. And there are many ways to manipulate data. Do people tell the truth on the phone to a stranger? Can the political leanings of the researchers skew the data? There are many problems with surveys and studies and wide variations in the outcomes.
When Gary Kleck and Marc Gertz published their landmark DGU survey, Armed Resistance to Crime, in 1996, showing that DGUs occurred in the millions, progressives had a hissy fit. Kleck was not a conservative pro-gun researcher, and his conclusion surprised him (see Kates et al., Guns and Public Health: Epidemic of Violence or Pandemic of Propaganda).
David Kopel wrote a short article describing the scientific controversies and academic battles because of the great disagreement between researchers’ differing findings. There is a very interesting discussion about the hidden Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports and data on this topic, too.
Kopel noted that “People who cannot abide the idea that DGU is common … point to a survey that does not ask about DGU.” And he concludes, “Gun-control proponents simply don’t want the truth to be known…”
All of this means is that we know that our political enemies are freely willing to lie to strengthen their narrative of dangerous guns and crazed gun owners, and they have done so for decades. For additional information about those CDC reports and data, see Dave Hardy’s article, Why Did the CDC Bury Data On Self Defense Usage?
So far, WE HAVE WON A BATTLE, but the war isn’t over.
States like New York will try to create loopholes and hoops to jump through that will try to limit the amount of Concealed Carry Licenses issued. One main area to this end is to use the ‘Sensitive Place’ concept to create as many sensitive areas as possible, making it nearly impossible to carry a weapon.
In response to questions during the case hearing, Justice Thomas resisted the idea that New York State could declare Manhattan to be a ‘sensitive place,’ an alternate name for ‘gun-free zone,’ “simply because it is crowded and protected generally by the New York City Police Department.”
According to the decision, jurisdictions could not replace the now less-restrictive law by declaring ‘gun-free zones,’ where only criminals would have weapons.
In other words, localities may not casually impede the act of self-defense by banning guns in the very places where they might be needed. What is the practical outcome of Gun Free Zone laws? Crime victims up, self-defense gun uses down. Check out John Lott, Jr’s article.
But guess what the progressives in New York State did?
The current NY Governor Kathy Hochul quickly signed into law a foolishly strong countermove to the SCOTUS ruling. People will get their licenses but face the huge gun-free zone of Times Square in Manhattan. In addition, there will be an exhaustive list of gun-free zones in the state, including all theaters and restaurants, all schools, including nursery schools, all ‘places of worship,’ all public transportation including taxis, all government locations, hospitals, libraries, playgrounds, parks and zoos, and much more.
The effect of this is that New York State becomes a schizophrenic checkerboard of spaces, so it will be virtually impossible to stay legal if you carry when you leave home. The angered gun control mob in NYS will continue to use their power to unjustly make criminals of the law-abiding while ignoring the violent offenders who safely damage the fabric of our society.
Gov. Hochul says she signed the law in order “to keep New Yorkers safe.” Now, SAFE FROM WHAT? The lawful or the lawless! No kidding, folks, these people can’t stop lying! For the millions of new firearm owners unfamiliar with progressive lies, please see John Lott’s research and his article, Gun Free Zones Increase Danger for the Public.
And other states are reviewing what New York State did and will follow suit to some degree.
By the way, we do not agree with the concept of ‘weapons-free zones’ even though generations of courts have decided that they may exist. We think they are counter-productive and unsafe. We think gun-free zones exist only in theory – because criminals ignore them.
We predict that there will be at least a decade of battles in various Courts over this obvious SCOTUS ruling.
We American firearms owners will not voluntarily disarm because we understand that the presence of defensive firearms in our possession far outweighs the negatives. We know that, in part, because of the high numbers of DGUs.
It’s comfortable to know that we are on the side of truth.
It truly pays to read the SCOTUS Ruling
About The Authors
Alan J Chwick has been involved with firearms much of his life and is the Retired Managing Coach of the Freeport NY Junior Marksmanship Club. He has escaped New York State to South Carolina and is an SC FFL Dealer & Gunsmith (Everything22andMore.com). [email protected] | Twitter/TruthSocial: @E22andMore
Joanne D Eisen, DDS (Ret.) practiced dentistry on Long Island, NY. She has collaborated and written on firearm politics for the past 40+ years. She, too, escaped New York State, but to Virginia. [email protected]