USA – -(AmmoLand.com)- Anti-gun New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has issued an executive order declaring a “gun violence” disaster emergency in the Empire State, reportedly allowing him to “tap into $138 million in state funds” to pay for efforts to combat what he calls an epidemic.
The announcement came Tuesday as Cuomo was appearing at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in Manhattan, according to NBC News. The new twist or truth, according to published reports, is that this allows Cuomo and other officials to treat violent crime involving guns as a public health emergency.
“This new strategy treats gun violence as a public health crisis, using short-term solutions to manage the immediate gun violence crisis and reduce the shooting rate,” NBC News reported.
According to Forbes and other publications, New York City has reported a spike in homicides, with 621 gun-related murders so far this year, up from last year’s total of 594 for the entire year. It could double the 2019 body count of 319 within days. According to the New York Daily News, 51 people were shot in New York over the July 4 holiday weekend, including 26 in just New York City. Shootings are up 38 percent over the same time period in 2020, the Daily News added.
The Gothamist reported June saw 165 shootings including 33 homicides in New York City, although far-left Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday was talking about a decline in city crime during the month. The newspaper said June 2020 produced 205 shootings and 43 slayings.
In the process of declaring war on guns, Cuomo said he would sign legislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Patricia Fahy (D-Albany) that will “make it easier to sue gun companies for gun violence.”
He inked that legislation promptly. That tactic was tried in the early 2000s as municipalities with liberal administrations around the country tried to bankrupt the firearms industry with a series of “junk” lawsuits, leading Congress to pass the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act prohibiting such legal harassment.
Combatting gun violence means getting illegal guns off the streets.
74% of guns used in crimes in NYS were purchased out of state.
The @nyspolice will form a new Gun Trafficking Interdiction Unit to stop the flood of illegal guns coming into NY from states with weak gun laws.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) July 6, 2021
The National Shooting Sports Foundation immediately said it will “challenge to overturn the law.”
“This law is unconstitutional, plain and simple,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF Senior Vice President and General Counsel. “It is abhorrent that Governor Cuomo is rehashing a decades-old failed playbook that was rejected by courts in the 1990’s and early 2000’s.”
Keane accused Cuomo of “blame shifting for his administration’s failures to prevent crime by pointing fingers at firearm manufacturers.”
NSSF said in a prepared statement that the law “is in contravention to federal law, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), and the legal foundations of tort law.”
Cuomo’s plan calls for efforts to “get illegal guns off the streets” and prevent firearms from falling into the wrong hands. While there is no clear definition of what are “illegal guns”, how he intends to accomplish that may become one more gun control campaign that impacts more law-abiding New Yorkers than it does the criminal element.
And the bills are signed!
✅Allows the public to hold gun manufacturers liable for their products creating a public nuisance
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) July 6, 2021
The governor also announced the creation of an “Office of Gun Violence Prevention,” which seems to be a growingly popular idea aimed at creating a taxpayer-funded bureaucracy to promote gun control legislation.
Cuomo’s executive orders will also require police departments to share data, NBC News reported.
Part of the millions of dollars Cuomo plans to devote to this effort will be used to create jobs and “community activities” for so-called “at-risk youth,” the Daily News reported. An estimated 21,000 jobs will be created this summer at several agencies, including the NYC Hospitality Alliance, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and the State Parks.
But the New York Post raised an interesting issue. This sudden declaration of war on gun-related crime comes at a time when Cuomo is “facing multiple probes tied to sexual harassment allegations and the cover-up of nursing home deaths from COVID-19.”
This could raise questions about whether this is a Cuomo effort to distract the public and the news media from those troubles.
The governor wants to create a council on “gun violence prevention.”
“Everything is on the table,” he reportedly said. “We all want the same thing, and that’s what we’re going to do.”
The Post also noted that State Senate Minority Leader Rob Ortt (R-Lockport) criticized Gov. Cuomo for “declaring another emergency” just “days after finally relinquishing his emergency powers.” He’s spent the past year exercising emergency powers. Now, he’s found another emergency.
But Ortt observed, “These heinous acts of violence and the victims affected deserve real solutions — not political grandstanding.”
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