Hawkins: New Zealand Gun Ban a Lesson in How It Could Happen Here

In this image made from video taken March 19, 2019, a police officer carries a gun voluntarily surrendered by a member of the public into the Masterton police station in Masterton, New Zealand. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says New Zealand is immediately banning sales of "military-style" semi-automatic and automatic weapons …
TVNZ via AP

New Zealand’s semiautomatic rifle ban provides crucial lessons to Americans about how a similar ban could be pushed and implemented here.

The first thing to be noted is that NZ’s ban–a semiautomatic rifle ban–also bans guns that are not semiautomatic. For example, on April 1, 2019, Breitbart News reported that NZ’s ban also prohibits the ownership of numerous pump shotguns.

We see similar, broad proscriptions introduced in the the U.S. when gun controllers like Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) push “assault weapons” bans in the wake of  a high profile shooting. Feinstein will push to ban the gun used in the shooting plus numerous other explicit makes and models that were not even part of the crime. Following the heinous AR-15-based December 14, 2012, attack on Sandy Hook Elementary, she pushed a ban not simply of AR-15s but of numerous shotguns and pistols as well.

Many people ease their worried minds by noting that Feinstein’s gun bans rarely make it to a full Senate vote, much less to the President’s desk, or they console themselves with four important words, “Shall not be infringed.”

I have even had pro-gun, federal agents speak to me about gun confiscation, saying, “It’ll never happen here.”

Again, look at what NZ is doing. They are not calling it confiscation per se, rather, they are framing it as a benign effort “to remove semi-automatic firearms from circulation” and putting together a buyback plan to reimburse owners for their lost property. And for any gun owners who think they can just keep their firearms and no one will be the wiser, those who crafted the NZ gun ban legislation included a possession penalty for semiautomatic rifles which “[ranges] from 2 to 10 years’ imprisonment.”

This is a blueprint for how anti-gun Senators and House members in the U.S. can go about confiscation, without calling it confiscation. Although here they would do it in steps by compiling law upon law, until the mishap of  breaking one statute also includes violations of others. Prison time could be required for infractions and, at a point when Democrats have legislative control, bans on guns rarely used in crimes and not as widely owned as handguns can be sought. Once secured, those bans can slowly be expanded, both in scope and in level of punishment, until any will to refuse compliance is broken.

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at awrhawkins@breitbart.com. Sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange.

 

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