Friday, March 1, 2013
 

 

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Thousands rally in Albany to oppose gun restrictions

ALBANY – An estimated 12,000 Second Amendment supporters converged on the state capital, Thursday, to demand repeal of the New York Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act of 2013, commonly known as the NY SAFE Act.  The act was passed in January in the wake of the Sandy Hook school massacre in Connecticut.

The law restricts all firearms in New York to magazines of seven bullets or less – making many law abiding gun owners into instant criminals with the stroke of a pen. Additionally, licensed handgun owners must now acquire a new permit every five years.

"In the rest of the world, people can only dream of the freedoms we've enjoyed," said David Keene, president of the National Rifle Association. "We in this generation will not allow those freedoms to be taken from us," he told the cheering crowd.

Keene criticized Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo, saying he's like a bad penny which keeps turning up.  As Housing Secretary for President Bill Clinton, Cuomo worked to ban assault rifles, Keene noted. "We fought them off in the 1990s, and we'll fight them off today."

"We all have a special interest in our future, and the kind of country we're going to pass on to our children and grandchildren," Keene said. He promised to crusade against gun opponents. "We'll help you defeat the politicians who will deprive you of your rights, we'll help you overcome these statutes in court, we'll do whatever is necessary to make certain that the Second Amendment rights passed down to us, are passed down to future generations."  

"We're not going to back down from our Constitutional rights – ever," agreed Republican Assemblyman Steve Katz. "We're not going to let them get away with ramming down our throats the most corrosive, draconian, liberty-snuffing, job-killing law I've ever seen,” the Putnam-Westchester lawmaker said.

“The governor thinks we are a vocal minority. We will go away quietly and go home and forget and the same for some minority Republicans who voted for this bill,” Katz said. “Well, here’s a promise from us I want them all to hear: we’re here to stay; they are going away.”

Katz noted that the NY-SAFE Act does not get illegal guns off the street, or provide better treatment for the mentally ill. He also warned the risk of Remington Arms, with 2,000 jobs, leaving New York. "This law punishes us, the law abiding citizen -- we've done nothing wrong."

Fifty of New York's 62 counties have passed resolutions opposing the NY-SAFE Act, reiterating the protections of the Second Amendment. The New York Pistol and Rifle Association, an NRA offshoot, will be filing a lawsuit to challenge the law's constitutionality in early March.