Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

Never Enough: New Zealand Government Pushes Even More Gun Control

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Never Enough: New Zealand Government Pushes Even More Gun Control

On July 22, New Zealand’s Labour-led government announced a wide array of new gun control proposals. The move came amidst the island nation’s ongoing program to confiscate commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms from law-abiding gun owners that will last through December 20. The government’s most recent attack on gun owners is likely to engender further civil disobedience to the firearm confiscation scheme.

In March, following a high-profile shooting in Christchurch, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern moved to ban and confiscate several types of commonly-owned firearms. The “Arms (Prohibited Firearms, Magazines, and Parts) Amendment Regulations 2019” was enacted in early April and, according to a summary from the New Zealand Police, prohibits the following,

  • All semi-automatic firearms (including semi-automatic shotguns), but:
    • Excluding rimfire rifles .22 calibre or less as long as they have a magazine (whether detachable or not) that holds 10 rounds or less; and
    • Excluding semi-automatic shotguns that have a non-detachable, tubular magazine that holds 5 rounds or less.
  • Pump action shotguns that:
    • Are capable of being used with a detachable magazine; or
    • Have a non-detachable tubular magazine capable of holding more than 5 rounds.

Moreover, the legislation prohibits rifle magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition, shotgun magazines capable of holding more than 5 rounds of ammunition, and a host of semi-automatic firearm parts and accessories. Those in possession of the newly prohibited firearms are required to modify them to comply with the Arms Amendment or surrender them at a “collection event” for a predetermined compensation price.

Soon after enacting the new prohibition, some in law enforcement and the gun control community expressed concerns that the government had missed a crucial step in the civilian disarmament process – firearms registration. At present, prospective gun owners must acquire a firearms license. However, only pistols and a small subset of long guns are required to be registered.

This lack of a registry has frustrated the government’s ability to ensure compliance with their firearm confiscation effort. Addressing this issue, New Zealand Police Association President Chris Cahill complained in May, “We really have no idea how many of these firearms are out there in New Zealand… Which really points to how bad our firearms legislation has been, that we have let this get out of control.” Gun Control NZ co-founder Philippa Yasbek whined to the Washington Post, “These weapons are unlikely to be confiscated by police because they don’t know of their existence… These will become black-market weapons if their owners choose not to comply with the law and become criminals instead.”

According to a July 22 press release from Ardern and Minister of Police Stuart Nash, comprehensive firearms registration is the government’s top firearms legislative priority.

Given the government’s recent course of action, one might reasonably wonder how successful such a registration plan would be. Kiwi gun owners are now on notice that their government will confiscate firearms and that a registry would facilitate this task. Gun owners who register their firearms would possess their guns at the temporary pleasure of a state that has demonstrated a willingness to dispossess them of their property at a moment’s notice.

Ardern and Stuart’s message only provided the broad outlines of the government’s legislative proposals, noting that the full legislation would be released in August. The proposed restrictions encumber every aspect of gun ownership in New Zealand. The release stated that the legislation would do the following,

  • Establish a register of firearms and licence holders to be rolled out over 5 years
  • Tighten the rules to get and keep a firearms licence
  • Tighten the rules for gun dealers to get and keep a licence
  • Require licences to be renewed every five years
  • Introduce a new system of warning flags so Police can intervene and seek improvement if they have concerns about a licence holder’s behaviour
  • Prohibit visitors to New Zealand from buying a gun
  • Establish a licensing system for shooting clubs and ranges for the first time
  • Set up a new formal group to give independent firearms advice to Police, which will include people from within and outside the gun-owning community
  • Provide for new controls on firearms advertising
  • Require a licence to buy magazines, parts and ammunition
  • Increase penalties and introduce new offences
  • Enshrine in law that owning a firearm is a privilege and comes with an obligation to demonstrate a high level of safety and responsibility

Aside from the registration requirement, the most concerning proposal is the expansion of subjective government discretion in the firearm licensing process.

A document accompanying the press release titled, “Arms Amendment Bill: Q+As,” made clear just how intrusive the new licensing requirements could be. The Q+A stated that “Police will have a wider range of powers to intervene using a range of compliance and enforcement measures.” Moreover, the legislation will deputize medical officials to infringe gun rights. The document explained, “Health practitioners will have a new responsibility to notify Police if they believe a licence holder should not use a firearm.” The paper cited “gambling addiction” as a circumstance that could disqualify an individual from licensure.

The Q+A also elaborated on the “warning flags being built in to the licensing system.” The paper noted, “Behaviour that will raise flags includes encouraging or promoting violence, hatred or extremism…” In other words, the New Zealand government would be the arbiter of acceptable speech and political opinion and permit the exercise of firearms rights dependent upon an individual’s conformance with their dictates. A prospective or current firearms licensee might also earn a “warning flag” for the nebulous offense of “showing disregard for others property or land.”

In he and Ardern’s press release, Nash is quoted as stating, “Owning a gun is a privilege, not a right.” This is incorrect. The right to keep and bear arms is an extension of the natural right to self-defense and is therefore inherent to all people and not dependent upon a government for its existence. Governments may fail to recognize the right, but have no power to eliminate it.

Some American politicians share Nash’s view of gun rights and many share Ardern’s zeal to control her population through firearms restrictions. Americans should pay careful attention to the New Zealand government’s actions as it provides important insight into the goals and mindset of the Second Amendment’s domestic political adversaries.

 

TRENDING NOW
NASCAR Takes a Hard Left

News  

Friday, August 30, 2019

NASCAR Takes a Hard Left

After decades of NASCAR drivers literally turning left for hours every race day (road course races excluded, of course), the governing body appears to be taking a figurative left turn, politically. K-Var, a retailer in outdoor and ...

Beto Going All-In on Confiscation

News  

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Beto Going All-In on Confiscation

Democrat Presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke continues to struggle to gain any sort of traction for his campaign. With some polls putting him in 10th place, and his average sitting around 7th, some might say that it is desperation ...

Tell Your Lawmakers: No Semi-Auto and Magazine Ban!

News  

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Tell Your Lawmakers: No Semi-Auto and Magazine Ban!

The Democrat Party is now so aligned with gun control that every major candidate running for its 2020 presidential nomination recently appeared in a propaganda video produced by one of the nation’s most active firearm prohibition groups. ...

San Francisco Board of Supervisors Declares NRA a “Domestic Terrorist Organization”

News  

Sunday, September 8, 2019

San Francisco Board of Supervisors Declares NRA a “Domestic Terrorist Organization”

On September 3, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution, “declaring that the National Rifle Association is a domestic terrorist organization and urging other cities, states, and the federal government to do the same.”The resolution was ...

House Democrats Continue Unprecedented Push for More Gun Control

News  

Sunday, September 15, 2019

House Democrats Continue Unprecedented Push for More Gun Control

As was continually threatened while Congress was on its six-week Summer break, House Democrats hastily convened a hearing on Tuesday to promote their latest batch of anti-gun bills.  The House Judiciary Committee’s markup of three bills, ...

Playing Games with Numbers

News  

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Playing Games with Numbers

Stanford Law Professor John Donohue and Theodora Boulouta, a Stanford undergrad, wrote an opinion piece in the New York Times that claims their new research shows the 1994 “assault weapons” ban really did work.  Their finding is ...

NRA Files Suit Against San Francisco for Violating First Amendment

News  

Sunday, September 15, 2019

NRA Files Suit Against San Francisco for Violating First Amendment

On September 3, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors smeared millions of law-abiding Americans by unanimously adopting a resolution that designated NRA a “domestic terrorist organization.” Less than one week later, on September 9, NRA filed a federal lawsuit ...

News  

Friday, September 13, 2019

NRA Statement on Texas Governor's Safety Action Report

The National Rifle Association released the following statement on Friday regarding Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's Texas Safety Action Report:   

“Pro-gun” Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick Turns on Second Amendment Supporters, Sides With Anti-Gun Lobby

News  

Sunday, September 8, 2019

“Pro-gun” Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick Turns on Second Amendment Supporters, Sides With Anti-Gun Lobby

Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick uses his political website to claim he is “leading the fight for life and liberty in Texas, including … standing up for the Second Amendment.” He also proudly notes his prior NRA endorsement. But ...

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Florida Alert! Are You Ready For Gun Registration?

A Constitutional Amendment calling for an "assault weapons" ban is being proposed for the ballot in 2020.  The definition of "assault weapon," in the amendment, includes ALL semi-automatic rifles and shotguns.  If the amendment goes on the ballot ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.