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Local News

February 10, 2014

Hundreds pack NY SAFE Act forum

About 300 people packed the Delhi American Legion on Saturday for a forum on the controversial NY SAFE Act. 

Presented by the Delaware County chapter of New York Revolution, a grassroots organization promoting awareness about personal liberties, the forum stretched on for three hours to a standing-room-only crowd. Local legislators from the state and federal levels joined other guest speakers in a passionate program focused on fighting what was described as an unfair and ineffective law. 

The Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act, passed 13 months ago, established a variety of tighter controls on firearm sales and ownership in New York state in response to the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. The forum focused on passive resistance and awareness-building as ways to fight the law. 

“We do not advocate violence, but do stand for non-compliance to laws that take away our rights,” NYR coordinator George Curbelo explained. 

State Sen. James R. Seward, R-Milford, seemed to support the speakers’ advice when he noted that, “Nothing authorizes a fee if you don’t register your firearms.”

Seward also spoke about a bill before the state senate to repeal “Cuomo’s ill-conceived gun control” law while keeping intact the provision in law which mandates life without parole for anyone who murders an emergency responder. Seward warned, however, that “a repeal is a long process and will take years.”

“The NY unSAFE Act does nothing to solve the problem of violence,” Seward added. “It is only onerous restrictions placed on our law-abiding citizens who rightfully own firearms. As a legislator, I’d rather write laws that come down tougher on violent criminals and that treat the mental health problems.”

Delaware County Sheriff Tom Mills concurred, noting that “The unSAFE Act does not address the bad people who use guns for violence. ... We need meaningful answers. We need to vote for and elect officials who work to change the mental health issues our country is dealing with now.”

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