New Yorkers, Your governor wants to put you all in jail over the desires of the Legislature.

I am amazed by the fortuitousness of this news.

Yesterday I wrote a post about the New York Daily News being snarky about the legislative end to a nunchuck ban in Arizona, and how New York City was the last place that should snark about this because of their knife laws.

Readers of this blog know that I have covered the legal travesty that is New York City’s tyrannical enforcement of the New York gravity knife law.

So it struck me that I saw this headline:

State Legislature Votes to Remove Gravity Knifes from List of Weapons a Person Can be Charged for Carrying

The state legislature has voted to remove gravity knives from the list of weapons a person can be charged for carrying.

This comes less than two months after a federal judge banned the knives in the city.

Advocates have said that a law allowing someone to be charged with a felony for carrying such a knife targeted working class people and people of color for prosecution.

In a statement, the city police department urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo to veto the legislation.

“Gravity knives are in reality rapidly-deployable combat knives. With more than 1400 stabbings and slashing in New York City so far this year, we need Albany to work with the NYPD to keep crime low and people safe,” an NYPD statement told NY1.

Of course Governor Cuomo did.  He’s a fucking tyrant that sees himself as the rightful heir and Imperator of the Empire State.

He’s backed by the second in command of New York State, the towering fucking communist, Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle published this article:

NY lawmakers try again to decriminalize common work knives

Two New York lawmakers introduced gravity knife reform bills on Wednesday for the third year in a row, hoping to make adjustments in a law that currently criminalizes common work knives that can be flipped open.

Assemblymember Dan Quart (Upper East Side) and Sen. Robert Jackson (Upper West Side) introduced twin bills that would remove references of gravity knives as dangerous weapons from the penal law listing firearms, switchblades, bludgeons and other dangerous weapons.

This is exactly the kind of thing a legislature should be doing, improving people’s lives by expanding rights.

“The idea that a foldable knife is any more dangerous than a fixed-blade knife is absurd,” Quart said in a release. “The ban does nothing to ensure public safety and is instead a false pretense for overzealous prosecutors to lock up people of color.”

A Legal Aid Society report analyzing caseload data between Jan. 1 and June 28, 2018 shows that NYPD and local district attorneys overwhelmingly target New Yorkers of color, who account for 88 percent of arrests for gravity knife possession. Most of those arrested were men.

Brooklyn’s 79th Precinct (Bedford-Stuyvesant) and the Bronx’s 49th Precinct have the highest rate of these arrests.

So the current law is being applied in a horrifically racist way.  Trust that it is white Democrats in power who enforce institutionalized racism that hurts hardworking minorities.

New York’s current gravity knife law makes a blade illegal if it can be opened using gravity or centrifugal force (such as “flicking” the knife open). Almost any knife, however, with enough attempts, can eventually be flicked open in this way.

This ambiguity is enough to send law-abiding citizens to jail, according to the Legal Aid Society, which represents roughly five gravity knife cases a day, or about 1,800 such cases each year.

Only one state senator voted against the legislation last year — former Sen. Marty Golden of Brooklyn.

Only one, that shows how seriously the legislature takes this.  Also Senator Golden is a piece of shit.

Mayor Bill de Blasio, the District Attorneys Association of the State of New York and Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance aggressively lobbied the governor to oppose the measure, Quart’s office said. Cuomo has vetoed the legislation twice.

Fucking tyrants love the current bullshit law because it allows them to abuse their authority, pumping up arrest numbers and collecting fines doing the easy work of busting people who don’t think they are breaking the law instead of going after real criminals.

The lawmakers are hoping that the third time’s a charm.

Three times the legislature has tried to help the people of New York out from under an abusive law and three times Cuomo has kept his boot on the throat of New Yorkers.

Redmond Haskins, a Legal Aid Society spokesperson, said Legal Aid’s analysis shows that gravity knives were used in the commission of violent crime in less than one percent of cases. Canes, crutches, glass bottles, baseball bats and other household items were alleged to have been used in the commission of violent crime at the same rate as, or more frequently than, gravity knives.

Gravity knives are the assault weapons of the knife world.  Hardly used in crime but a focus of the wrath of politicians who know shit about them.

Some unsuspecting knife owners are arrested at coffee shops across the street from their construction sites, he said. Others are nabbed on their way to work as stage hands, artists or building superintendents. One Parks Department employee was apprehended while working as an arborist for Prospect Park.

“They use these knives as work tools,” Haskins told the Brooklyn Eagle. “They get letters from their employers saying they need the knives on the job.”

Every time Cuomo or de Blasio talks about helping working class New Yorkers, this is how you know it’s bullshit.  You can’t help working class people by throwing them in jail or fining them broke for having the tools they use for work.

In almost all of the cases Legal Aid Society has represented, the gravity knife possession charge was the “top charge,” Haskins said. That means the knives weren’t used or possessed while committing another offense.

“New York City is the only part of the state where police go after people like this,” he added.

Fuck New York City, that progressive hellhole run of six foot, five inch stack of communist dog shit.

This reporter walked to a corner hardware store in Downtown Brooklyn on Thursday and easily purchased a knife similar to one possessed by numerous defendants in gravity knife cases.

“It is profoundly unjust that people are arrested and can lose their jobs, homes, children, or be deported, simply for carrying a tool they need for work,” said Lisa Schreibersdorf, executive director of Brooklyn Defender Services, in a statement. “New York state must decriminalize these basic tools once and for all.”

Yes they should, and the Governor backed by the Mayor of NYC is going to fuck over working New Yorkers again.

Understand that this bill is backed by a judges ruling:

Federal Judge Rules New York’s Dumb ‘Gravity Knife’ Law Is Unconstitutionally Vague

A federal judge ruled today that New York’s notoriously nonsensical law criminalizing “gravity knives”—which groups have said for years is used by New York City to selectively prosecute people, especially the working class and minorities, for carrying common folding knives—is unconstitutionally vague.

in response to a lawsuit by New York City sous chef Joseph Cracco, who was arrested and fined for carrying a pocket knife, U.S. District Judge Paul Crotty ruled that New York’s law banning gravity knives afforded police and prosecutors almost unlimited discretion to arrest and prosecute people for carrying knives commonly sold in stores across the state.

“The court recognizes that the District Attorney must have discretion to prosecute or not to prosecute criminal matters,” Crotty wrote in his opinion and order. “The combination here, however, of a statute that does not specify how Cracco can identify a gravity knife and a a practice of prosecuting possession of gravity knives in an unclear and inconsistent manner provides police and prosecutors ‘virtually unlimited’ or ‘unfettered’ discretion to enforce the gravity knife statute. Under such circumstances, and with the lens of Cracco’s past prosecution and intended future conduct, the gravity knife statute is unconstitutionally vague.”

The Appeal is a legal newspaper that focuses on “on the most significant drivers of mass incarceration, which occur at the state and local level.”  They have a great article praising the new bill and why it should be passed.

NEW YORK LAWMAKER ANNOUNCES SWEEPING CHALLENGE TO GRAVITY KNIFE LAW
Opponents of the law say it unfairly targets people who need knives for work, and are battling it on multiple fronts.

So the current law is not enforceable, but New York City being New York City, thinks it is above Federal Law and continues to enforce it, so the New York legislature is trying to help the people of New York City.

The entire state legislature is working to ease the burden on working class New Yorkers, especially working class New Yorkers of color, and the Governor and NYC Mayor are continuing to crush them.

This is an amazing story.

Groups and organizations from as Left as the Village Voice, the ACLU, and the Public Defenders Association to as right as the NRA, to as libertarian as Reason have all backed a bill that is as overwhelmingly bipartisan and totally unanimous to stop New York City from abusing mainly working class minorities, and Governor Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio are going to veto it for the third time.

This is the oppression that Cuomo and de Blasio have in their hearts.

New Yorkers, you need to act accordingly.

Americans, you need to remember this when these fucking monsters decide to run for federal office.

3 Replies to “New Yorkers, Your governor wants to put you all in jail over the desires of the Legislature.”

  1. Groups and organizations from as Left as the Village Voice, the ACLU, and the Public Defenders Association to as right as the NRA, to as libertarian as Reason have all backed a bill that is as overwhelmingly bipartisan and totally unanimous to stop New York City from abusing mainly working class minorities, and Governor Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio are going to veto it for the third time.

    As has been pointed out, when both the ACLU and the NRA are against you, you are wrong. Period. Full stop. You. Are. Wrong.

    “Unlikely allies” doesn’t even begin to describe it.

    My question is, where are all the trade unions on this? I haven’t heard anything from them. Why aren’t the construction workers’, carpenters’, electrical workers’, etc., unions and lobbying groups all over this? Are they too “principled” to come out against fellow Democrats, or in favor of a bill the Republicans support? Their members are being arrested, fined, and jailed for owning the tools of their trade. It’s not the time for partisan politics.

    Also, since a federal judge has ruled the law unconstitutional, doesn’t that expose the NYPD, mayor, DA, and everyone else involved to significant civil and criminal liability for wrongful arrest, wrongful prosecution, wrongful imprisonment, etc.?

    Class-action style, in their personal capacities as well as professional ones?

    Just saying.

    1. Re unions: I suspect the answer is that union leadership are leftists first and foremost, and workers’ representatives a distant second. It’s a bit like the situation with liberal Jews and the Dem party.

      1. @pkoning: That was my admittedly-cynical thought, too. The union leaders are too wrapped in partisan “Othering” to do something that actually helps their members.

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