NEW YORK (WTEN) — Gov. Kathy Hochul was in New York City Monday morning to sign legislation aimed at strengthening the state’s gun laws. She was joined by state leaders including State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins
“In New York we are taking bold strong action,” said Hochul. “We are tightening the red flag laws to keep guns away from dangerous people. And we are raising the age of semi-automatic weapons so no 18 year old can walk in on their birthday and walk out with an AR-15. Those days are over. Those days are over!”
In addition to strengthening red flag laws, and raising the age to 21 to buy a semi-automatic weapon, these new laws would also require microstamping for new semi-automatic guns, will amend the definition of a firearm in New York State, and will required social media companies to improve response and reporting of hateful content.
In direct response to the Buffalo shooting, a new law will also ban body armor sales except for those in certain professions such as law enforcement.
“Do I want to live in a world, where with the lunch box, with the toys that a child might bring, with the crayons, with the backpack a bullet proof vest? This cannot be where we want to go,” stated Senate Majority Leader, Andrea Stewart-Cousins.
While Democrats are proud of the newly signed gun laws, Republicans aren’t rejoicing.
In a statement Senate Republican Leader Rob Ortt said, “ New York already has the toughest gun laws in the nation. The bills passed today are about shifting blame away from the real problem… If we really want to stop crime we should focus on putting dangerous criminals behind bars and keeping them there, not punishing law abiding New Yorkers or preventing New Yorkers from exercising their constitutional right to protect themselves.”
Hochul continued to call on members of Congress to make changes to federal gun laws, especially after the recent mass shootings that have devastated communities across the country.
“Heaven help you if you can look at those images and not have a change of heart and say I’m in a position of authority and power and influence and I have a moral responsibility to do something,” said Hochul.”Let’s get together and have thoughts and prayers for them that their hearts will finally turn.”
Take a look at the full press conference below: