Following closely in the footsteps of New York, the Democratic-led New Jersey Legislature took up a number of gun-control bills on Wednesday.
The package of 20 bills includes legislation that would ban magazines of ammunition with more than 10 rounds, require proof of firearms training to buy a gun, allow schools and day care centers to establish gun-free zones and require the seizure of firearms from people deemed by a mental health professional to be threats to themselves or others.
One bill would require ammunition sales to be conducted face to face, and another would expand the current requirement for firearms identification cards to make them more like driver’s licenses, with photographs, and renewal every five years.
More gun-free zones? Have Democrats learned nothing from the fact that mass shootings tend to occur in such places? And what about the “seizure of firearms from people deemed by a mental health professional to be threats to themselves or others”? While mentally ill individuals should not have firearms, what will be considered a threat? How are mental health professionals defined and can this definition change over time? Won’t this just deter the very people who seriously need mental health help from seeing a professional? There are serious problems with each of the proposals, of course, which is why there is some hope they may not pass at all—despite the fact that the Assembly’s public safety committee approved each one. Don’t forget, Gov. Chris Christie has the ability to veto those measures that do pass.
A floor vote will be held by the full Assembly on February 21.