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“Let’s Ban it AGAIN” – Legislative Attacks Begin
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Only in New Jersey would anti-gun legislators move to ban something that is already prohibited, but that is exactly what some lawmakers will be trying to do at a meeting of the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee on Thursday, November 30th

The committee is scheduled to consider A5200 – a bill which has not even been introduced yet, but which is very likely the Assembly companion to S3477, introduced by Senator Loretta Weinberg (D37) earlier this month.  The legislation seeks to ban “bump-stocks,” even though they are already prohibited under New Jersey’s existing “assault” firearms law according to New Jersey firearms law expert Evan Nappen (because they possess two “offending features” - a pistol grip and a telescoping stock, thus constituting a “part or combination of parts designed or intended to convert the firearm into an assault firearm…” N.J.S. 2C:39-1w(5)). 

The legislation would not make anyone safer and would not change the fact that bump stocks are already prohibited in the Garden State.  They would remain prohibited whether the legislation passes or is defeated, so the effort to move the bill appears largely symbolic and calculated to make headlines. 

Hardware bans are ignored by criminals, and are easily circumvented by those bent on doing evil -- who will not be deterred and will simply find another tool.  Only those who follow the law are impacted, which solves nothing. 

Rushing the bill during the last weeks of the Christie Administration, instead of waiting until Governor-elect Phil Murphy takes office, reinforces that gun ban politicians have been frustrated by their defeats over the past 8 years and are chomping at the bit to unleash a fresh torrent of attacks on gun owners and sportsmen.

Even though bump stocks would remain prohibited in New Jersey regardless of the outcome of this legislation, gun owners may nevertheless wish to contact members of the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee to point out the absurdity of trying to “ban” something that is already prohibited, and to urge them instead to take up measures severely punishing violent gun criminals rather than targeting hardware.

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