This is a letter that was written by the current Erie County Sheriff, Tim Howard. Although he has been the center of debate on other issues, I can't agree with him more on this issue. If this is how the law enforcement officials feel, perhaps our state leaders may want to start to rethink things?

The following was posted on the Erie County Sheriff's Webpage:

A Message from Sheriff Tim Howard

January 31, 2013 - Our state already had some of the toughest gun laws in the nation and with the stroke of a pen our State Legislature and Governor made them even more restrictive last month,  all in the name of making us safer.  I don’t believe for one minute that Governor Cuomo did this to protect us; rather he rammed this bill through for his own personal agenda,  so he could be the first out of the gate to thump his chest and say how  restrictive gun laws are in New York , thus beating President Obama to the punch.

It is no secret Andrew Cuomo wants to be a presidential candidate in 2016.  He took a very emotional event in our nation (the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut) and the unrelated murders of two first responders in Webster, NY and wrapped his constricting gun legislation around them like a bow, hand delivering it to the NYS legislature in a sweeping package that, in my opinion, infringes on every American’s constitutional right to bear arms.

We as citizens never even had an opportunity to respond to the proposed bill with our input; even law enforcement wasn’t consulted on this.  In my opinion, this new law is proof of what gun rights people have been saying all along - that registration is a precursor to confiscation.   We have landed on a slippery slope allowing the government to start tinkering with our second amendment rights - what comes next?

Sheriff (Facebook)

Let’s point the finger where it belongs - on mental health. Not one of these new restrictions would or could have stopped the massacre at that elementary school or in Webster, NY.  The common denominator in these shootings has been a mentally disturbed person.

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