My letter to my members of the New York legislature:
I am writing in regard to the tragic event in Binghamton where 13 people were killed by a troubled man. It is a very sad event and I empathize with the families of those taken prematurely from their lives. I also have feelings of anger with the State of New York which has stripped from the people the ability to defend themselves to the best of their ability. Restricting the right to bear arms has not made people safer, to the contrary it has made them less safe.
The State leaves to the people of New York the options of fleeing for safety or dialing 911 and waiting. In this case both options proved useless to the victims. The murderer blocked off the option to flee, trapping his victims in the building. Calling for police in the best case will take a couple of minutes to get a responding officer. A couple of minutes doesn’t sound like much unless you stop to calculate how much mayhem can occur in that time span. I’ll leave that calculation to your imagination, but it does not necessarily have to include the use of guns.
In another State where there is little impediment to law-abiding citizens carrying defensive weapons, the people have another option for protecting themselves and their fellow citizens. There are many examples of situations that begin like that horrifying day in Binghamton. These events end very differently when one of the potential victims is prepared and able to defend him/herself and others by directly stopping the perpetrator. These events produce fewer victims and therefore fewer headlines.
Gun violence is produced by criminals, by nature criminals are not inclined to obey gun restrictions. That leaves law abiding citizens obeying firearm restrictions, at their own peril. The legislature of New York is responsible for this outrageous event which could have been stopped at the outset by one responsible armed citizen. It is time to allow the people of New York to take responsibility for themselves, their families and their neighbors. It is clear that the State cannot be everywhere all the time, nor should it be.
THE CONSTITUTION OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Section 1. The defense and protection of the state and of the United
States is an obligation of all persons within the state. The legislature
shall provide for the discharge of this obligation and for the maintenance
and regulation of an organized militia.
The people of New York are the militia. The legislature has not regulated but has disarmed the militia. The legislature abdicated its obligation to maintain the militia. The people of New York are suffering the consequences of misguided legislation. Firearms are tools, in the hands of a criminal they represent danger, in the hands of law-abiding citizens they represent safety, in either case it is the hand that guides the tool.