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If there is reason to believe the microstamping of guns can save lives, why would anyone oppose it? Why should legislation requiring microstamping in New York state be controversial?
Microstamping imprints the make, model and serial number of a gun onto the cartridge when the gun is fired. The technology has been strongly supported by law enforcement professionals who say it will enable them to trace firearms through cartridge casings found at crime scenes.
A bill requiring microstamping has already passed the state Assembly several times, but state Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos won’t even let it come to the floor for a vote.
A spokesman for Skelos told our reporter, “We did not take up the microstamping bill this year. It’s an unproven technology.” The National Rifle Association contends the firing pins could be easily altered.
Sen. Jose Peralta has called on Skelos to stop blocking a measure that could save lives. Peralta has suggested that his Republican colleagues have been influenced by large campaign contributions from the NRA and other members of the gun lobby.
We suspect he is right on this. The arguments against microstamping are flimsy. Some opponents say the technology is too costly, but Democrats estimate it will cost only $2.50 per gun and possibly as little as 50 cents.
The Remington Arms Co., which moved its headquarters to North Carolina and employs about 1,000 people upstate, has threatened to leave New York if microstamping is passed. This gun maker last year received nearly $6 million in state economic development funds — your tax dollars.
But Peralta went too far when he asked Skelos to “come in from the suburbs.” The microstamping bill was co-sponsored by Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel, who represents Great Neck, L.I.
Skelos and the GOP should support microstamping because it’s the right thing to do, it may save lives and it could make committing a crime with a gun risky business. How strange to find the Republican Party opposing tough law-and-order legislation.
According to Assemblywoman Grace Meng, in one week in July 77 New Yorkers were shot. Weigh that against the flimsy arguments make by Skelos and the NRA.
©2012 Community Newspaper Group
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