New York/California – -(AmmoLand.com)- While Second Amendment supporters have scored huge victories in federal courts and are advancing in many states, there are two states they need to deal with: California and New York.
In some ways, this was to be expected after NYSRPA v. Bruen. New York and California’s defiance will, in the next few years, make Clarence Thomas’s day with their actions. However, having the legal right is one thing. Being able to exercise that right can be very different.
California and New York aren’t just defying the Supreme Court, they are looking for any way they can harass firearms manufacturers, pro-Second Amendment organizations, and even average Americans who wish to exercise their Second Amendment rights. These states can overwhelm just about any major firearms manufacturer – to say nothing of a local FFL who is the victim of someone using a fake ID or straw purchaser.
California, in particular, has been aggressive about attacking states who pass laws that the regime in that state through travel bans. It may be time for some pro-Second Amendment states to impose similar measures in response, especially if California continues to defy the Supreme Court.
New York is a much different threat. In this case, Letitia James has presided over multiple attacks on the Second Amendment community: She’s sued companies that sold kits or even 80% receivers, she’s targeted the NRA, and her office leaked tax data on Nikki Haley’s advocacy group.
Maybe Nikki Haley isn’t the top candidate for loyal Ammoland readers, but she did not have a bad record on Second Amendment issues, either. Unlike Liz Cheney, she hasn’t turned her back on us. Therefore, we need to have her back in this fight, regardless of any minor disagreements (and given the way Joe Biden is talking about us, there is a lot of stuff that now has to fall under minor disagreements). It is well past time to demand investigations into Letitia James by Congress.
The fact is, anti-Second Amendment extremists in state AG offices can launch attacks and drown the firearms industry in legal fees. That was the plan behind the suits by big cities (and some states) 25 years ago, before the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act in 2005. James is trying to replicate that now, to enact controls that have been and likely will be rejected by state legislatures and Congress.
One thing that is essential is for Second Amendment supporters to urge their state lawmakers to protect the FFLs and manufacturers in their states, and requiring that these states intervene in suits like the one James filed against companies that sell 80% receivers. One nuclear option could involve having states like Texas, Florida, or West Virginia sue New York directly, using the language of Article III that states suits by states against other states are cases where the Supreme Court has original jurisdiction. A similar approach could be used against California.
The fact is, Second Amendment supporters can make major gains by defeating anti-Second Amendment extremists via the ballot box at the federal, state, and local levels. But they also need to ask their elected officials to stand up against what California and New York are doing, or else our legal wins could be a dead letter.
About Harold Hutchison
Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post, Strategypage.com, and other national websites.