Many of the super-rich moguls of New York City own guns, according to the NYPD, and some people are enraged about it. Eugene O’Donnell, a John Jay professor and former cop, charged, “By definition, these are the least needy people for permits. Many of them have the means and wherewithal to secure their own private army if they need to.”
But you don’t have to be rich in order to apply for a handgun permit: it’s $340 to file an application, and an additional $94.25 for fingerprinting.
So what’s the fuss about? Why should the rich be denied permission to have guns? In order to carry a gun, an applicant must prove to the NYPD that there is a need for the gun, whether the owner carries large amounts of cash, does security work, or is in danger from being threatened. Certainly many of the super rich are highly visible to the public, which means they are more easily targeted. Just a list of some of the moguls makes you realize how well-known they or their companies are: Donald Trump, Howard Stern, Don Imus, Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, Marvel Comics head Isaac Perlmutter. cosmetics heir Ron Lauder, former Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg.
Of course, Michael Bloomberg, the current mayor of New York, is super-rich, and anti-gun, but that’s where his hypocrisy starts; he has security guards packing heat when he goes abroad.
The question isn’t why the super-rich should have guns, but why the laws are so nebulous in New York that it makes it difficult for less-rich citizens to acquire them.