Supporters of this effort argue that it will increase public safety by educating the general public as to the whereabouts of dangerous criminals.
“It will make our communities more aware of who is in our neighborhood and what actions they have taken,” said New York City Councilman Costa Constantinides, who sponsored a bill in support of this effort. “Part of public safety is knowing who is on the field.”
In reality, this legislation — just like every other law targeting “gun crime” — has nothing to do with public safety and everything to do with politics.
If Constantinides were truly interested in public safety, the proposed database would include all violent criminals — not just the ones who use guns. By choosing to target only “gun criminals”, he is implying that someone who has committed a minor gun offense is more dangerous than someone who has stabbed someone to death or beaten his wife.
The obvious hypocrisy of this law seems to be completely lost on its supporters, who are more interested in shaming gun owners than they are in addressing crime.
“If you committed an act of gun violence, if you shot somebody, and you don’t want to be put in the public spotlight, if this is going to embarrass you too much then you know what – just stay away from guns. Don’t do the crime,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr.
The real purpose of this law is to get votes — not to promote public safety.