Attn NYC Reasonoids: Gun Rights Discussion at NYCLU

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I'll be at the New York Civil Liberties Union tomorrow evening to discuss D.C. v. Heller, the Second Amendment, and individual v. collective rights with NYCLU legal director Arthur Eisenberg and Overlawyered.com proprietor Walter Olson. The discussion starts at 7 p.m. and will be held at the NYCLU offices at 125 Broad Street on the 19th floor. Details here.

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  1. Are you going to discuss NYC specific barriers to gun ownership? I was dismayed to find that ownership of even rifles and shotguns required an application for license from the NYPD, and that the process is time consuming and can be expensive.

  2. I wonder which side of freedom the NYCLU folks will be on?

  3. NYC requires separate licenses for handguns and long guns, whereas the rest of NY State requires only pistol permits and there is no permitting of long guns. So if you want to have both long and hand guns in NYC you have to go through two completely separate application processes. Handgun applications are run though City Hall while long guns are run through an office in Queens. The handgun application/license costs hundreds of dollars while the long gun application/license runs a bit over a hundred. Both application processes take 6 months or more.

    It’s a massive, expensive pain in the ass but you will receive both licenses as long as you are not ineligible (felon, etc.), and you can use them for home/business defense, so it is not as draconian as DC or Chicago.

    Of course, if you know the right people, your applications get handled nice and quick.

  4. The handgun application/license costs hundreds of dollars while the long gun application/license runs a bit over a hundred.

    Is that per firearm? Or, per permit?

  5. Sounds like simply trying to price people out of the self defense market with those costs. I might live in a backward ass state with flagrantly crooked politicians but the dictatorships you all live with in NY, Chicago, DC, San Fran, LA etc are beyond kookie.

    Thankfully none of you have any problems with crime in any of those Utopias we all wish we could emmulate.

  6. Is that per firearm? Or, per permit?

    That is per permit, but each firearm must be registered for a small fee, varying by county. For instance, in Orange County (not in NYC), you do not need a permit or registration of long guns, but all handguns must be registered (this applies to all of NYS). If you wish to purchase a handgun, you go to the gun shop and pick out which one you want, present your permit, and pay for it (deposit or in full). You take the receipt and go to the pistol permit office at the County Gov. Center where you request a “purchase ticket” for $3 and give them the serial number and description and a copy of the purchase receipt. The purchase ticket takes a week or so, and then you pick up the ticket, bring it to the gun shop, present it to them, and get the handgun. The serial number is also added to your pistol permit (it contains a list of the serial numbers of all your handguns).

    Fun, right? It is the same for handguns in NYC, but also for long guns.

  7. Yeah, I looked into it. I still have to disclose my arrest record even though I wasn’t convicted of anything (not to mention all the stupid little shit I’ve been arrested for, now I have to track all that down); I still have to take the time to appear before some licensing authority; have to get fingerprinted and pay for it (add about $100 to the $140 license app). Of course if I lived a few miles east of where I live now I could just go to Modell’s and buy a rifle.

    I guess I could have cops I know make some calls to speed it up, but really that seems quite douchey.

  8. I think WA state got this right; you don’t need a permit for either pistol or rifle, but you must sign a form swearing you are not a felon, under a restraining order, forcibly committed, etc.

    The only time you need to fill out a permit is if you want to carry, which used to cost $75.00 and took less than 2 months, good for 5 years.

  9. but all handguns must be registered (this applies to all of NYS)

    Ok, I have about ::ahem:: 16 or 17 handguns, I don’t recall. I’m seriously trying to figure a way to move to central Adirondack park. Does that mean I have to register each and every one of them? I’m not purchasing them, I already own them.

  10. Other Matt:

    I believe it is each and every one.
    Hey, I used to live in Massachusetts and the nutty gun laws were one reason I left.

  11. I guess I could have cops I know make some calls to speed it up, but really that seems quite douchey.

    If you have the connections, use them. It’ll make a big difference.

  12. Matthew-(ouch..only my mother called me that, when she was mad, still makes me cringe). I grew up in WA State, I’m glad it’s still hanging tough in the face of the CA nannytypes. I haven’t gone back in 12 years, when I saw the news calling it “Northland” and CA was “Southland”, after I cleaned up the vomit I said it was too bad, but they’d done fucked up the place and I wasn’t coming back. I figured I’d write it off as another CA clusterscrew, I’m glad there’s still some sanity about.

    Hey, I used to live in Massachusetts and the nutty gun laws were one reason I left.

    I can’t think of any reason whatsoever I would want to go to Massachusetts. I can’t think of any reason I’d even want to drive through it, I’d much prefer to go via the northway and through VT to get to Maine.

  13. Does that mean I have to register each and every one of them? I’m not purchasing them, I already own them.

    Yes. But you cannot even possess them without a NYS pistol permit. So if you move to NYS and bring your handguns with you, you are breaking the law until you get that permit.

    Permits are issued by the judge that oversees your town. NYS pistol permits are all the same, but then a judge can apply “restrictions” to the permit. If a judge applies no restrictions, you have an unrestricted permit which allows concealed carry. Restrictions can be things like “can possess for hunting, fishing, camping, hiking, and sporting purposes” (this is common) and it means you can carry to and from any of those activities legally.

    Judges have full discretion to apply restrictions, so if you get a judge known for leniency and issuing “unrestricted” permits, you get to carry. If you get a dick judge he/she will probably do the common restrictions above, or if you get a NYC judge, they will restrict to “to and from sporting only”.

    The kicker: non-NYC pistol permits are INVALID in NYC. They do not honor pistol permits from any non-NYC county. Great, eh?

  14. I can’t think of any reason I’d even want to drive through it, I’d much prefer to go via the northway and through VT to get to Maine.

    Uhh…because there are no major east-west highways through VT and NH and it makes your trip vastly longer? MA sucks but the Mass Pike makes the trip a hell of a lot faster.

  15. Uhh…because there are no major east-west highways through VT and NH and it makes your trip vastly longer? MA sucks but the Mass Pike makes the trip a hell of a lot faster.

    Vastly longer perhaps, but much better. There are a couple states I don’t want anything to do with, that’s one of them.

  16. It’s a massive, expensive pain in the ass but you will receive both licenses as long as you are not ineligible (felon, etc.), and you can use them for home/business defense,

    Wait, does that mean you have to make a showing that you can/should be allowed to use them for home/business defense, and can be turned down if some pencil-neck chair-polisher thinks you don’t really need a gun for self-defense?

  17. Yes. But you cannot even possess them without a NYS pistol permit. So if you move to NYS and bring your handguns with you, you are breaking the law until you get that permit.

    So, let’s say I owned property up there but not a resident, same drill? Could I even get a permit if I wasn’t a “resident” for voting purposes?

  18. Wait, does that mean you have to make a showing that you can/should be allowed to use them for home/business defense, and can be turned down if some pencil-neck chair-polisher thinks you don’t really need a gun for self-defense?

    No. Possession and defensive use in the home is a given. They can only refuse the permits if you are a felon, domestic violence restraining order recipient, etc.

  19. So, let’s say I owned property up there but not a resident, same drill? Could I even get a permit if I wasn’t a “resident” for voting purposes?

    Yes, same drill, and I believe you must be a “resident” to get a permit. I do not know what the residency requirements are. Robert DeNiro has an unrestricted NYC permit. The only reason he can have this (beyond being famous) is that he has a residency in NYC and spends sufficient time there.

    If you drive through NYS with a handgun locked unloaded in the trunk under Federal “Peaceable Journey” laws, and a state trooper pulls you over and discovers this, they might arrest you. NYS likes to flaunt Peaceable Journey, and the NYS definition of “loaded” is if there is any proper-caliber ammunition in the car, not even in the gun. This was told to my shooting range by a member who was also a prosecutor.

    NYS has no reciprocity with any other state and do not recognize the pistol permits of any state.

  20. “The prohibition is general. NO clause in the Constitution could by ANY rule of construction be conceived to give to Congress a power to disarm the people. Such a flagitious attempt could only be made under some general pretense by a state legislature. But if in any blind pursuit of inordinate power, EITHER should attempt it, this amendment may be appealed to as a RESTRAINT on BOTH.”

    – William Rawle, A View of the Constitution, 125-6 (2nd ed. 1829). (Appointed by President George Washington as U.S. District Attorney for Pennsylvania in 1791).
    http://gunshowonthenet.com/BOOKS/RawleViewConst/RawleViewIndex.html

    “Their swords, and EVERY OTHER terrible implement of the soldier, are the BIRTHRIGHT of an American. . . . [T]he unlimited power of the sword is NOT in the hands of EITHER the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, IN THE HANDS OF THE PEOPLE.”

    – Tenche Coxe, using the pseudonym “a Pennsylvanian”, Feb. 20, 1788, Pennsylvania Gazette. Mr. Coxe was a prominent Philadelphian and political economist who was named assistant secretary of the treasury in 1790, commissioner of revenue in 1792, and purveyor of public supplies in 1803. Whose series of newspaper articles were very much approved by both Mr. Hamilton and Mr. Madison.
    http://gunshowonthenet.com/2ALEGAL/Precedent/MadisonToCoxe01031788.html

    “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall NOT be infringed.’ The right of the whole people, old and young, men, women and boys, and not militia only, to keep and bear arms of EVERY description, and NOT such merely as are used by the militia, shall NOT be infringed, curtailed, or broken in upon, in the smallest degree; and all this for the important end to be attained: the rearing up and qualifying a well-regulated militia, so vitally necessary to the security of a free State. Our opinion is that ANY law, State or Federal, is repugnant to the Constitution, and VOID, which contravenes this right.

    – Nunn vs. State, Georgia State Supreme Court, [1 Ga. (1 Kel.) 243, at 251 (1846)].
    http://gunshowonthenet.com/AfterTheFact/NunnVsState.html

    “…More especially, it cannot be believed that the large slaveholding States regarded them as included in the word citizens, or would have consented to a Constitution which might compel them to receive them in that character from another State. For if they were so received, and ENTITLED to the privileges and IMMUNITIES of citizens, it would EXEMPT them from the operation of the special laws and from the police regulations which they considered to be necessary for their own safety. It would give to persons of the negro race, who were recognized as citizens in any one State of the Union, the right to enter every other State whenever they pleased, singly or in companies, without pass or passport, and without obstruction, to sojourn there as long as they pleased, to go where they pleased at every hour of the day or night without molestation, unless they committed some violation of law for which a white man would be punished; and it would give them the full liberty of speech in public and in private upon all subjects upon which its own citizens might speak; to hold public meetings upon political affairs, AND TO KEEP AND CARRY ARMS WHEREVER THEY WENT….”

    – U.S. Supreme Court decision of 1856 in Dred Scott v. Sandford.
    http://gunshowonthenet.com/AfterTheFact/DredScott1856.html

  21. “The defence of one’s self, justly called the primary law of nature, is not, nor can it be abrogated by any regulation of municipal law. This principle of defence is not confined merely to the person; it extends to the liberty and the property of a man: it is not confined merely to his own person; it extends to the persons of all those, to whom he bears a peculiar relation — of his wife, of his parent, of his child, of his master, of his servant: nay, it extends to the person of every one, who is in danger; perhaps, to the liberty of every one, whose liberty is unjustly and forcibly attacked. It becomes humanity as well as justice.”

    – James Wilson, ‘Of the Natural Rights of Individuals’, 1790-1792 (Signed the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution, Congressman, Delegate to the Constitutional Convention and U.S. Supreme Court Justice).
    http://gunshowonthenet.com/2ALEGAL/OftheNaturalRights.html

    “From among the rights retained by our policy, we have selected those of self defence or bearing arms, of conscience, and of free inquiry, for two purposes; one, to shew the vast superiority of our policy, in being able to keep natural rights necessary for liberty and happiness, out of the hands of governments; the other, to shew that this ability is the effect of its principles, and beyond the reach of Mr. Adams’s system, or of any other, unable to reserve to the people, and to withhold from governments, a variety of rights.”

    – John Taylor, Revolutionary Soldier and U.S. Senator, (1792 – 94, 1803, 1822 – 24). [An Inquiry into the Principles and Policy of the Government of the United States: Section the Sixth; THE GOOD MORAL PRINCIPLES OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES, (1814).]
    http://gunshowonthenet.com/AfterTheFact/AnInquiryTaylor1814.html

  22. “I’ll be at the New York Civil Liberties Union tomorrow evening to discuss D.C. v. Heller, the Second Amendment, and individual v. collective rights with NYCLU legal director Arthur Eisenberg and Overlawyered.com proprietor Walter Olson”

    There is no such thing as a “collective right”.
    Individuals have rights and government has powers.

    Ask the NYCLU for any other examples in the Constitution where rights “of the people” are a collective rather than individual right.

  23. NYS has no reciprocity with any other state and do not recognize the pistol permits of any state.

    Neither does MD, but at least you can get them in NYS.

  24. Ask the NYCLU for any other examples in the Constitution where rights “of the people” are a collective rather than individual right.

    Thanks, I needed a good laugh 🙂

  25. From the article:

    Should individuals have the right to bear arms? If so, is this a fundamental right guaranteed under the Constitution?

    Seems a little biased from the start (surprise, surprise). It definitely seems like the ACLU’s mindset on this is that individuals shouldn’t have the right to bear arms, so therefore they don’t.

  26. If you drive through NYS with a handgun locked unloaded in the trunk under Federal “Peaceable Journey” laws, and a state trooper pulls you over and discovers this, they might arrest you. NYS likes to flaunt Peaceable Journey, and the NYS definition of “loaded” is if there is any proper-caliber ammunition in the car, not even in the gun. This was told to my shooting range by a member who was also a prosecutor.

    I believe they prosecuted an airline traveler a couple of years ago for this too. He had a properly checked shotgun(?), on his way to a shooting event. His journey was delayed and he had to spend the night in NYC, IIRC.

  27. Other Matt,

    I’m glad it’s still hanging tough in the face of the CA nannytypes.

    Just barely–in WA there’s basically two political cultures, ‘Seattle’ which is coastal super liberal and ‘Not Seattle’ which is (mostly) Western state conservative.

    Sadly, Seattle and King County grows ever larger and with it their liberal dominance.

  28. Just barely–in WA there’s basically two political cultures, ‘Seattle’ which is coastal super liberal and ‘Not Seattle’ which is (mostly) Western state conservative.

    Yep, I know. The reason I said I wasn’t going back. Too damn depressing. The libertarian hippy types of the late sixties through early eighties have given way to california nanny transplants.

    Dammit.

    There oughtta be a law…..

  29. Why did the Judge Advocate General of the Army 1910 and 1955 hold the word “arms” under the Second Amendment “refers to the arms of the militia or soldier and does not authorize the carrying of weapons not adapted to use for military purposes.”????

  30. Matt, Not only must you register each and every handgun that you own. You cannot and I stress cannot even bring them into the state until they are licensed. If are going to be a NYS resident, then you should not have to much difficulty obtaining a permit in that area of the state. If you are not a NYS resident and do not plan on becoming one, you are out of luck as NY does not issue permits to out of state residence.

  31. To Carlos;

    Because that particular Army Judge Advocate was either an activist or illiterate and uninformed.

    I think it quite telling when someone quotes some obscure official, such as this Judge Advocate, to try and counter the overwhelming quotes from founding fathers, previous Supreme Court Justices and leading scholars of the day.

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