Reacting largely to a pair of atrocities, the massacres in Las Vegas and at the Parkland school, the New Jersey legislature recently passed a law forbidding possession of firearm magazines capable of holding more than ten cartridges. For many years prior, New Jersey’s magazine limit had been fifteen rounds for private citizens.
In its original iteration, the law applied to New Jersey’s own cops, and if they carried their service pistols off duty (as many do), they would theoretically have had to arrest each other on their way home from work. Bernard Kerik, former Commissioner of the New York City Police Department, angrily pointed out that felons would of course ignore this additional felony and keep using higher capacity magazines, and only the good guys and gals would be handicapped with less ammunition.
The lawmakers quickly revised the law, supposedly to exempt cops, but the wording may not succeed in that goal. No one is more familiar with New Jersey gun laws than attorney Evan Nappen, a warrior for gun owners’ civil rights, who discusses the imperfections here
What Kerik neglected to mention is that off-duty cops aren’t the only armed good guys and gals in New Jersey. COMMON SENSE ALERT: Anyone with even a high two-digit IQ should be able to figure out that local law enforcement has the best handle on local criminals and how to protect us all from them. If law enforcement has determined that pistols with high capacity magazines are the best things to issue to protect the law-abiding citizens from violent criminals, it follows logically that pistols with high capacity magazines might just be the best tools for those law-abiding citizens to use to protect themselves from violent criminals.
Early reports indicate MASSIVE non-compliance, as of 12-31-18.
This latest New Jersey folly will turn countless thousands of law-abiding New Jersey citizens into felons. Early indications are that compliance will be somewhere between slim and none. We are witnessing yet another sad triumph of symbolism over substance.