New Maryland Gun Laws - 2 sides


PDA






jrhines
January 4, 2003, 10:48 PM
Here are two articles from the Wash Post, showing the two views of the current MD gun lock mess...

First the editorial...

Guns, Locks and Lives

Saturday, January 4, 2003; Page A16
YOU WOULD THINK from their orchestrated bleats that Maryland gun dealers were caught off guard -- and hadn't known perfectly well for nearly three years that an internal-trigger-lock law would take effect on Jan. 1, 2003. Suddenly, and no doubt in hopes of tearing at the heartstrings of Gov.-elect Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., opponents of the safety requirement say that they fear for their livelihoods, that only a small number of handgun models on the market meet the law's standards. Glossed over in their despair is any acknowledgment that the law might have the effect intended by its advocates: saving lives, especially those of children.
Under the law, the only newly made handguns that dealers may sell in Maryland are those with integrated locking mechanisms that limit a weapon's use to those who hold the key or know the combination. Dealers say the feature is found on about 25 percent of handguns on the market. That's a start, surely, and as with so many gun laws, this one came with a loophole to ease the dealers' transition: They are still permitted to sell any used and new handguns without integrated locks if the weapons were manufactured before 2003. More than a few dealers knew enough to stockpile arsenals of these models for their clientele.
Many dealers are arguing that the internal-lock guns won't do much to save lives. They say that it can be difficult to tell by sight if such a weapon is locked unless the lock is tested, which could result in accidental firing of a gun assumed to be locked. How difficult is that for manufacturers to retool? Instead of fighting to repeal a sensible lifesaving measure, Maryland's dealers should step up pressure on manufacturers to make changes in their models.
The trigger-lock provision was part of a package of gun safety measures aimed at preventing shootings rather than concentrating narrowly on punishing those who use guns in crimes. Maryland has been a leader in enacting safety requirements, but the effectiveness of any such measures is limited unless they can be made part of federal law. Better registries of gun owners and ballistic "fingerprints" ought to be established nationwide, and more technology should be incorporated that can restrict a gun's use to its owner.
During his campaign for governor, Mr. Ehrlich said he would review the state's gun laws to determine their effectiveness. That should not mean weakening or repealing laws but rather making them more effective. Time and again, Marylanders have voiced strong support for gun safety laws, measures aimed at saving lives, not waiting to act after lives have been taken.
© 2003 The Washington Post Company

...And one letter..


Lethal in Maryland

Saturday, January 4, 2003; Page A16
The new Maryland law requiring internal trigger locks in handguns [front page, Dec. 31] appears to be a solution in search of a problem.
The proponents of the requirement claim it will save children's lives. However, the Centers for Disease Control report that in 1999 and 2000, only one child was killed accidentally by a firearm in Maryland. There were three accidental firearm deaths total in the state. Given the rarity of accidental firearm deaths in Maryland, the trigger lock requirement seems like a gross overreaction.
During the same two years, 184 children in Maryland were killed in motor vehicle accidents. Maryland residents would be better served by having their government look at how to prevent car deaths rather than wasting resources on a useless gun law.
PAUL WEISSLER
Colorado Springs


My question is if the application of some draconian measure is acceptable because "even if it saves only one life, it's worth it...", then what if the application of that measure costs one life? Why is this factor never brought forward?

J Rhines
Seneca, MD

If you enjoyed reading about "New Maryland Gun Laws - 2 sides" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Standing Wolf
January 4, 2003, 10:55 PM
Quote: My question is if the application of some draconian measure is acceptable because "even if it saves only one life, it's worth it...", then what if the application of that measure costs one life? Why is this factor never brought forward?

The leftist extremists who advocate so-called "gun control" have no interest in saving lives, nor any concern that their actions actually cost law-abiding American citizens their lives. Their only intention is to disarm the commoners. They don't care about crime or crime rates. They don't care about crime victims. They don't care about rights. They don't care about responsibilities. They don't care about facts. They don't care about history. They don't care about logic. Their only intention is to disarm the commoners.

RobG
January 5, 2003, 01:04 AM
"Integrated lock" had been poorly defined (similar to "training" video fiasco - handgun purchases delayed because required video for a license didn't exist for some months after law went into effect), so deals were put off. Law restricts gun imports to MD (far fewer than 25% have 'em). Many manufacturers refusing to ship to MD, so a de facto limit/ban now in place.

Wonder what prices will be like in 6 months?

gun-fucious
January 5, 2003, 01:10 AM
the current issue sidearm of the US Military is no longer legal to sell in MD if it was manufactured after Jan 1

i think that one was rather extensively tested

its not about saving kids
its about ending a culture

chaim
January 5, 2003, 01:33 AM
YOU WOULD THINK from their orchestrated bleats that Maryland gun dealers were caught off guard -- and hadn't known perfectly well for nearly three years that an internal-trigger-lock law would take effect on Jan. 1, 2003. Suddenly, and no doubt in hopes of tearing at the heartstrings of Gov.-elect Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., opponents of the safety requirement say that they fear for their livelihoods Um, I don't know what planet this guy lives on. First, so what if they knew about the law for three years, what can they do about it? It isn't a law that requires them to do anything, it requires action from gun makers. He mentions that they had time to stockpile pre-2003 guns so they should be fine and the claims of financial trouble shouldn't be a problem for those who planned ahead. Well, guns aren't cheap- not everyone can afford that big an inventory. Even those who can maintain a large inventory, fine what about in 6 months, 8 months, a year?

Sure, later in the editorial he says something about they should have and should now pressure the gun makers into making MD compliant guns. Again, what planet does this guy live on? The gunmakers knew about the law too, they made a business decision that it was in their interest to simply write off MD instead of complying so I doubt they'd listen to the MD dealers. Many manufacturers, including MD based Beretta, have stated that even if they do eventually make MD compliant guns they have no intention to market here again due to ever increasing restrictions (so even when other states require the locks they still won't sell here). Many distributors have even written off the state thus even legal guns may be harder to find and at least rise in price.

These dealers have been fighting the law and lobbying but the liberal legislators ignored them. They've done what they could so I don't get the accusatory "but you knew it was coming so what do you have to complain about" tone.

Glossed over in their despair is any acknowledgment that the law might have the effect intended by its advocates: saving lives, especially those of children. Here is the heart of the problem, and the reason they are winning- we let them set up the arguement. We may counter with something about our rights or we'll say "but they don't save lives", but face it- this is 2003. People with a 30sec attention span are only going to get bored and have their eyes gloss over in a discussion about rights or with statistics about gun deaths. What gets their attention is "it will save lives", "think of the children" and one or two examples of accidental deaths or injuries that might have been prevented with the new law.

So what do we need to do? Change our tactics. Sure use statistics that show the grabbers are wrong about safety for those who have the attention span to pay attention but we also need to recognize that most don't and will only pay attention to the emotion driven arguement. We need to counter with true stories of women being stalked by their ex-husbands who bought a gun to protect themselves but were killed because they couldn't pick it up yet due to a waiting period. People who were gun owners (preferably women, the elderly, gays or some other member of a group that people consider victimized) but were killed because they weren't at home and they lived in a state that didn't allow CCW. We need to publicize stories where CCW holders in CCW states were alive today (and better where they saved others) because they had their gun. We need stories of people who ignored CCW laws and are alive today because of it. We need stories of people who died or were injured because they couldn't use their gun because it had a trigger lock or built-in lock and they couldn't unlock it in the stress of being attacked.

Only when we stoop to their level of playing on people's emotions will we have a snowball's chance of reversing this tide.

chaim
January 5, 2003, 01:46 AM
Wonder what prices will be like in 6 months?
I'm scared to even think about it. Even those guns that will be compliant (S&W, some HKs, some SAs, Taurus) will go up. Only so many are made and the number brought into the state won't really be able to go up. The number of used guns is pretty much set. So there will be a limited number of guns available and demand probably won't be much changed. What is it the law of supply and demand says? I'm not looking forward to it.

JeepDriver
January 5, 2003, 02:15 PM
I'm wondering what happens to the poor guy the gets transfered by his job to Maryland. Say he has 6 pistols that are post 2002 manufacture. Is he now a criminal for moving into the State of Maryalnd? :confused:

I'm hoping to move out of Maryland to Colorado in a few years, if not I'll be a PA resident that comutes to work in Maryland. I'm not looking foward to the prices we are going to be facing in the next year or so.

Also how are the dealers supposed to know the date of manufacture? Do the have to call the Guns manufacturer or are the State police going to handle all those questions. What if I want to order a pistol from JG Sales, who's job is it to find the exact date the gun was made? :banghead:

Wait let me guess that will be another fee tacked on to the price. :fire:

chaim
January 6, 2003, 04:36 AM
I'm wondering what happens to the poor guy the gets transfered by his job to Maryland. Say he has 6 pistols that are post 2002 manufacture. Is he now a criminal for moving into the State of Maryalnd? The law looks like it bans the sale of guns, not possession of guns, made after Jan 1, 2003 without built-in locks so you probably could keep your guns but you could never sell or trade them (don't know about giving them away).

Also how are the dealers supposed to know the date of manufacture? I guess on new guns they can ask the distributor before bringing them in (though all the dealers I've talked to won't take any guns the distributor didn't already have before Jan 1 and some won't buy any from their distributor and will only sell guns they already had in stock- they are playing it as safe as possible). For used guns (in a few years once there will be enough post 1/1/03 used guns to worry about) I guess they'll need to check on the serial number.

What if I want to order a pistol from JG Sales, who's job is it to find the exact date the gun was made? Probably yours.

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer and this is MD, they will interpret and reinterpret things as restrictively as possible and in such a way as to make things as confusing and difficult for gun owners as they can.

Calanctus
January 6, 2003, 11:39 AM
YOU WOULD THINK from their orchestrated bleats that Maryland gun dealers were caught off guard -- and hadn't known perfectly well for nearly three years that an internal-trigger-lock law would take effect on Jan. 1, 2003.

The probem wasn't that the dealers didn't know the law was coming, the problem is the legislation was so poorly defined that no one knew which guns would be on the list! The exact term in the law is "integrated safety mechanism." Which guns sold today don't have integrated safeties of some sort? (Manual safeties, grip safeties, drop safeties, etc.) I believe the MD State Police issued the "approved" list (Or is that the " NOT DISAPPROVED" list?) just days before the law went into effect. Without knowing how the law was going to be enforced, there was no way of saying, "Well, Sigs aren't on the list, better order a bunch now." Typical of the way MD's handled most of their new legislation over the last several years.

gun-fucious
January 6, 2003, 12:19 PM
read and weep:

(D) BEGINNING ON JANUARY 1, 2003, A DEALER MAY NOT SELL,
13 OFFER FOR SALE, RENT, OR TRANSFER IN THE STATE ANY HANDGUN
14 MANUFACTURED AFTER DECEMBER 31, 2002 UNLESS THE HANDGUN HAS AN
15 INTEGRATED MECHANICAL SAFETY DEVICE

ANY HANDGUN MANUFACTURED AFTER DECEMBER 31, 2002
that means no cross state in-shipping of "used" guns

14 (6) "INTEGRATED MECHANICAL SAFETY DEVICE" MEANS A DISABLING
15 OR LOCKING DEVICE THAT:

16 (I) IS BUILT INTO A HANDGUN; AND

17 (II) IS DESIGNED TO PREVENT THE HANDGUN FROM BEING
18 DISCHARGED UNLESS THE DEVICE HAS BEEN DEACTIVATED.

Poodleshooter
January 6, 2003, 12:21 PM
I'm wondering what happens to the poor guy the gets transfered by his job to Maryland. Say he has 6 pistols that are post 2002 manufacture. Is he now a criminal for moving into the State of Maryalnd?
There's nothing new about that. That is precisely the situation if you move to several states, including New York, with ANY handgun, internal safety or not. It's a complete denial of private ownership of private property legally obtained in another state, but it escapes scrutiny by being a "safe and reasonable measure".
Until now, MD has actually been rather gun friendly as far as purchasing goes. They just don't let you carry it anywhere legally.

If you enjoyed reading about "New Maryland Gun Laws - 2 sides" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!