It's not just real guns Hochul is going after

AP Photo/Hans Pennink, Pool

Gov. Kathy Hochul took office via the back door. She wasn’t elected governor, after all. She moved into the job after her predecessor, the notoriously anti-gun Andrew Cuomo, was forced out amid allegations of sexual harassment.

My hope when she took office was to see someone less vehemently anti-gun in office. After all, while Hochul spouted anti-gun nonsense in her statewide campaign, she’d been pro-gun when holding more localized offices. Surely she wouldn’t be as bad as Cuomo.

Oh, but she is.

While Cuomo contented himself primarily with the gun industry, Hochul is even going after toy guns.

Governor Hochul has signed new legislation, toughening restrictions on “imitation weapons”.

The law specifies that imitation weapons must be easily identifiable. They can not be black, blue, silver or aluminum.

It must also be colored white, bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright green, bright blue, bright pink, bright purple, or be made entirely of transparent or translucent materials.

“My top priority as governor is keeping New Yorkers safe, and that means cracking down on devices used to commit crime,” Governor Hochul said. “Restricting these realistic-looking devices will ensure misleading and potentially dangerous devices are off our streets, keeping kids, law enforcement and all New Yorkers safe.”

Ironic coming from the same governor who just did everything in her power to keep people in New York disarmed in the face of such “guns.”

After all, if a few bad guys with imitation guns get popped by good guys who can’t tell the difference, how long do you think it would be before bad guys stopped trying to play such a stupid game?

Imitation guns are useful to criminals not just because they look real. They’re useful because there’s little chance that their targets will be armed as well.

Think about it. If you’re a criminal who is looking to rob someone, if there’s a chance they might be armed, are you really going to want to use a toy gun? Obviously not.

Even beyond the crime element, however, Hochul’s new measure will hurt military simulation gamers, people who use these so-called imitation guns to basically play war. It’s a harmless activity that, while considered silly by some, is no threat to national security.

They count on the very kind of guns this measure bans, effectively ending the activity in New York state.

Well done. People had something harmless they could do to pass the time, but it got essentially banned out of existence because of nothing the participants did. Brilliant.

Meanwhile, criminals will keep getting these “imitation” guns and keep using them.

Or, if they don’t, they’ll just try a little harder and get real ones. Surely that won’t be a disaster for Hochul and New York as a whole, now will it?

Laws have consequences that go well beyond the intended effect. In many cases, those effects happen while the law does nothing it’s meant to do. I really believe this is going to be one of those issues.

Yet Hochul and the legislature could have made it a non-issue simply by accepting Bruen in the spirit it was ruled instead of trying to be as restrictive as they thought they could get away with.

Good guys with guns would do more to dissuade bad guys using toys than any law ever could.