How NJ Tries To Disarm Its Own Retired Police

We all know that New Jersey isn’t a place that’s friendly to gun owners. Onerous regulations and an impossibility to obtain a concealed carry permit make that point loud and clear. The state is also notorious for hammering people from out-of-state for just traveling through with weapons and ammunition that doesn’t comply with state law, ignoring federal regulations in the process.

All of that would be awful enough on its own, but the state also works to apparently disarm its retired police, in spite of the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA).

Since inception, New Jersey has tried to restrict, place hurdles and impede an officer’s LEOSA authorities. How?

For starters, an officer must obtain a New Jersey permit to purchase and carry a firearm.

They are also not allowed to carry uniformly standard law enforcement hollow point ammunition, which ballistics have proven is more effective and less penetrating than full metal jacket ammunition (mandated by New Jersey).

If they want to carry across state lines, they must qualify at the same level as active officers.

These regulations essentially turn retired law enforcement officers into criminals if they comply with federal law but dare not comply with New Jersey’s overly restrictive regulations. Essentially New Jersey says, “LEOSA means nothing. You must get a separate permit (which involves a fee) and follow our rules.”

What’s sad though is that the criminals in Camden, Trenton and Newark clearly have no rules to follow. They seem to inflict as much mayhem as they want. Meanwhile, the legislators in Trenton are more concerned about restricting guns for law enforcement.


Now, I’m a bit biased. My father is a retired police officer. I grew up with him having a firearm on his person pretty much all the time, in part because of the very real possibility that someone he arrested might try to get revenge. Let’s face it; criminals aren’t known for discretion much of the time.

Because of that, though, I want my father to be safe. I want him to be able to be armed anywhere he goes.

I’m just thankful he lives in Georgia and not New Jersey.

Frankly, this is all very telling of how people think in that state. The idea that while they’re in uniform, they can be armed, but once they take it off, they lose all of the legal protections. It’s very clear they view the firearms as a privilege, not a right. They also view police as servants of the state rather than of the people.

It also points out that arguments about average citizens being untrained as a justification for disarmament are just a smokescreen. After all, these officers were well-trained enough while on duty. Did they turn in their knowledge upon retirement? Of course not. It just shows that it’s never really been about training, but about restrictions.

None of that is good.

The LEOSA was passed to simplify what retired police officers have to go through. While it shouldn’t matter–after all, we should have constitutional carry in all 50 states, but that’s not likely to happen in my lifetime–it does.

Apr 16, 2021 10:30 AM ET