I had seen various tweets about an absurd piece of gun legislation proposed in New York. But in New York, much like California, there is a bunch of absurd legislation proposed that their residents either seem to endorse, tolerate or reject by leaving the state. But a tweet from my good friend Paul this morning caught my eye.
I think you could toss the 5th Amendment in there as well in some fashion based on the actual legislation. And Paul's assessment is completely correct. The intent of the law is to add a social media assessment to the process of purchasing a rifle or a shotgun. The conditions and decision making guidance are terrifying.
First, the purchaser must consent to a review of their social media and search engine history by the governing law enforcement agency. It seems in New York believes you can be denied your 2nd Amendment rights based on the assessment of a law enforcement official that something you said indicates it is possible you might some day commit a gun related crime.
The information the prospective purchaser may be asked for to constitute consent are equally concerning in the proposed bill. The bill instructs that law enforcement may request the person's log in information to include account passwords and/or request access to a personal electronic device such as a phone or computer. Keep in mind this is all to obtain information that may lead an officer of the law to conclude you might do something illegal with a gun, someday. Maybe. In order to deny you that gun.
The things law enforcement, who are directed to assess the social media profiles by the proposed legislation and may reject a purchase based on are Orwellian. It would be nice if Progressives viewed 1984 as a work of fiction rather than an instruction manual. Three years of social media history and one year of internet search would be reviewed for:
- Commonly known profane slurs or biased language used to describe the race, color, national origin, ancestry, gender, religion, religious practice, age, disability or sexual orientation of a person;
- Threatening the health or safety of another person;
- An act of terrorism;
- ANY OTHER ISSUE DEEMED NECESSARY BY THE POLICE AUTHORITY.
So, is saying a biological man can never be a woman biased language? How about using the phrase "Islamic terrorism"? Maybe referring to those migrate without appropriate authorization as illegal aliens? The offense will be in the eye of the beholder and there are no limits or specificity around what may be considered. Of course the fourth bullet is also an amazingly broad catch all.
Oddly, the legislation limits the social media platforms to be assessed to Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram. Weird, but I guess the mere presence of a Gab account would be an automatic disqualifier and the esteemed Senator Parker has never heard of MeWe. The search engines are limited to Google, Bing and Yahoo. I guess Mac users are are safe if they stick with Safari. Download Brave and Duck Duck Go my friends.
Gun laws in New York are already comparatively restrictive at the state level and many counties and locales have added additional hurdles. Many of the over 50 licensing jurisdictions operate on a "may issue" basis for pistol licenses. This means law enforcement holds wide discretion in the issuing of the permits and in some cases may even require justification for their issuance.
This legislation provides them with similar discretion for the purchase of a rifle or shotgun. While I understand most people think of New York and see the sprawling navy blue metropolis at the bottom right hand corner, upstate and in the western part of the state, hunting and other outdoor sports are alive and well. Significant areas of the state are also more conservative than you might expect. Just like large swaths of Northern California, they are outvoted by the overwhelming population in their urban behemoth.
Prior to the midterms, this legislation presented little chance of advancing and becoming law as the government was divided with a Republican controlled Senate. However, the state is now a deep blue Democratic trifecta with the State Senate being taken by the Democrats who now hold a 17 seat majority. The odds just went up. And the legal challenges will be forthcoming.