Here we go again...
This Thursday, September 22, the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee is set to hear 3 anti-gun bills. These bills, as you'll see below, will not do a thing to make anyone safer.
First up we have A3934
A3934 would mandate microstamping on ALL new handguns sold in the state. Microstamping imprints an identifier on the shell casing fired from a handgun. The bill claims that this will help law enforcement track down criminals after they've used guns in crimes. There is a problem with microstamping that the sponsors of this bill have overlooked though.
The technology simply does not work.
Maryland and New York attempted similar tactics when they created a database of shells fired from guns that were sold in their states. They were both cancelled after not solving a single crime. New York wasted 50 million dollars on that project, while Maryland wasted 6 million.
Studies have been done on microstamping, and not a single one finds it viable. Indeed, here are some findings from the Rhode Island State Crime Laboratory after testing it out on .45ACP and .22LR shells:
Markings on the .22 caliber cases were illegible due to the hard brass used in their manufacture, as well as the fact that the case is impacted multiple times in a single firing cycle by the firing pin and bolt face. The combination of variations in impact points, due to manufacturing tolerances and overlap with other marks on the firing pin and bolt, make recovery of the microstamp improbable even with multiple cases from the same incident.
Microstamps with large numbers of characters were not reproduced on fired cases in initial testing and the remainder of the testing was done with 8 character microstamps. This number is insufficient by itself for containing the information desired, and characters of the size used are too large for additional characters to be added given the size limits and geometry of a firing pin tip.
The quality of the impressions was negatively impacted by the normal cycling of the firearm. The causes include multiple firing pin impacts, firing pin drag during extraction, and anvil marks from the internal primer anvil. The result was a recovery rate of a little over 50% - with oversize characters.
The microstamp is easily removed without negatively affecting the performance of the firearm. Removal/replacement of a Colt firing pin takes about 1 minute with a ballpoint pen as the only tool. The microstamp was removed using a 50-year-old home sharpening stone and a portable drill. It took under 15 seconds. Although the characters are only .001 inch in height, the inertial firing pin could have been shorted by at least .030 inch without affecting its performance.
The firing of a thousand rounds through a Colt pistol resulted in the softening of the sharpness of the microstamp characters on the firing pin tip due to peening. No attempt was made at recovery of the image on these fired cases.
The vendor has suggested that the problem of firing pin replacement/defacement would be countered by microstamping other parts that come into contact with the cartridge case. As no samples were available, no testing was done. In addition to the problem of replacement/defacement of these parts, cartridge material, be it brass, steel or aluminum, is significantly harder than primer caps and thus considerably more resistant to stamping.
So not only does the technology not work. It can be defeated by a ball point pen. At this point we wouldn't be surprised to see the Assembly add an amendment to this bill banning ball point pens as well. Because guns.
Snippets from this study and others on microstamping can be viewed here.
Next up we have A2938
A2938 is a bill that, as it states in its synopsis, "Requires firearms seizure when mental health professional determines patient poses threat of harm to self or others." So your therapist or counselor has not only the ability, but the duty, to have your guns seized if they determine you a threat to yourself or others. All with no due process of course.
This bill is awful on its face for its lack of due process, but additionally, the effect it will most likely have is causing people not to go get professional mental health counselors for fear of losing their guns. There is already a process for people found to be violently mentally ill, and it's involuntary commitment. It is even mentioned in the bill itself! A person who has been involuntarily committed is 1) Banned from purchasing or possessing firearms and 2) Can't access them anyway, since they are involuntarily committed. But hey, why read your own bill?
Finally we have A1119
A1119 bans retailers from selling any toy gun that is the color black, blue, silver, or aluminum.
It also mandates that orange stripes must be on the side of barrel and the barrel must have a diameter of at least one inch (unless it's a water gun).
These bills will only get worse as time goes on. Christie will not be here forever to veto this stuff, join today so we can prepare and get organized for when he's not here anymore. More info on that coming soon!