Liberal gun control advocates may claim that they are not coming for our guns, but a hot mic moment in New Jersey indicates otherwise. Three Democratic state senators did not realize their comments could be heard when discussing their gun confiscation desires after a public meeting.
The members of the New Jersey Budget and Appropriations Committee identified by voice reportedly are Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, Senate Majority Whip Linda Greenstein, and Assistant Majority Leader Sandra Cunningham, and an unidentified staffer. Senator Weinberg is also a champion of anti-gun bills currently being discussed in the New Jersey State Senate.
The audio of the conversation is sometimes difficult to hear, due to the background noise in the meeting room, but an overall anti-Second Amendment tone comes across loud and clear. One of the lawmakers had this to say when unknowingly speaking near a hot mic:
“We needed a bill that was going to confiscate, confiscate, confiscate.”
Another New Jersey State Senator said, “They don’t care about the bad guys. All they want to do is have their little guns and do whatever they want with them.” The senator’s demeaning attitude about the Second Amendment was impossible to misunderstand, even amid the bustling sounds in the background.
The third New Jersey State Senator did somewhat concede that some gun owners want to keep firearms out of criminal hands, but then toed the liberal line in her final comment – “They don’t have any regulations to do it [gun control].”
In addition, on May 20, the New Jersey State Assembly approved three gun control bills and sent the legislation to Governor Chris Christie for his signature. The recent gun legislation is the first such bills to pass both state chambers. Multiple bills were authored after the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School last December.
The New Jersey gun control bills paved the way for the creation of a task force to research school security, mandate more “firearms information” sharing between law enforcement agencies, and require the disposal of illegal guns.
Another gun control bill was passed after an amendment was added. The legislation would mandate the release of specific mental health records for background checks before the issuance of a gun permit. In all, twenty-two gun control measures have introduced in the New Jersey State Assembly.
One of the bills would ban all weapons of 50-caliber or more in the state. Another New Jersey bill appears to be playing politics with taxpayer dollars. The gun control bill would reportedly require state pension funds to divest from companies which make “assault” weapons. The votes on the gun control legislation not surprisingly fell primarily along political party lines. Presumably, the “confiscate, confiscate, confiscate” believing state senator was not among the few Democrats who voted in support of the Second Amendment and against the gun control bills.
State lawmakers are also currently debating a bill to ban high-capacity magazines. Such pieces of legislation in New Jersey and beyond are merely emotional responses to the tragic school shooting and will do nothing to actually prevent more carnage. A viral video of a county sheriff clearly demonstrated how even novice shooter could empty and replace multiple ten-round magazines in a matter of seconds.
Governor Chris Christie recently outlined a plant to “strengthen” gun control laws that already exist in New Jersey. Excerpts from the Governor Christie’s proposal include requiring gun buyers to show government issued ID when buying a firearms and a ban on Barrett 50-caliber semi-automatic sniper rifles.
A rather irrational group of folks recently organized an anti-gun flash mob in Newark. Participants sprawled out on the sidewalk of a city street and had their pals outline their bodies in chalk to create a massive faux crime scene. Calling attention to gun violence is a worthy endeavor, but the group entirely missed the mark on the root cause of such atrocities. It is not the legal gun owner the liberal activists should concern themselves with; it is the criminals who have and always will find a way to get their hands on a weapon.
Nikio Bocour, Ceasefire New Jersey coordinator who was involved with the gun control flash mob, had this to say about the Newark demonstration:
“We think it’s really important that people be able to visualize the effects of gun violence.”
The New Jersey anti-gun demonstration was done in conjunction with Art=Ammo, a New York City-based group. The organization was founded by Lorin Latarro, a dancer and Broadway choreographer. Latarro had this to say about the Art=Ammo project:
“In this debate, art becomes the silver bullet that can cut through the sound bites and political shouting saturating gun control rhetoric. Art taps into another part of the brain that doesn’t think in red and blue, penetrating people’s emotions to breakthrough. I speak with movement. I create ephemeral, moving images to hopefully affect people in some way—shift attitudes, change emotional states, broaden one’s scope of information and understanding.”
Perhaps Latarro could actually speak with a few gun owners and do an ephemeral and moving images display to highlight the experiences of folks who are still alive today thanks to their ability to shoot a firearm. As New Jersey NRA member and West Jersey Tea Party founder Bill Haney so aptly put it, America is the among the safest nations in the world thanks to the Second Amendment. Haney also told local media that he respects Ceasefire New Jersey’s right to make their point, but he firmly disagrees that tougher gun control laws are necessary.
Perhaps the protestors should take their chalk drawings shenanigans into violence-torn inner cities neighborhoods where gangs and drug dealers have destroyed lives for decades. Formerly nice working-class neighborhoods have turned into war zones, prompting parents to fear allowing their children to play in the front yard. Elderly residents in areas controlled by gangs and drug dealers cannot walk to the corner store for a carton of milk without risking becoming another drive-by-shooting statistic.
While preventing criminals and the mentally ill from getting their hands on a firearm is one area where both gun rights and gun control advocates agree, it is important that new laws do not infringe upon privacy rights of all citizens and the Second Amendment.