New York’s bizarro governor, radical Democrat Kathy Hochul, whose party just rammed totalitarian anti-gun laws through the state legislature in Albany, seems to thinks she’s Jesus Christ.
Is this characterization of Hochul hyperbole? Decide for yourself.
In a wildly under-reported public sermon last year, Hochul zealously denounced the unvaccinated, accusing them of defying God’s will. The unvaccinated people she vilified are her own constituents. They have good reasons, religious or medical or otherwise, for avoiding the various vaccines, all of which have been shown to have serious side effects. The fact they reject the vaccines should not be her concern, but that would not be in keeping with leftist public health dogma, so their heresy must be punished.
America is supposed to be about freedom of choice, but that’s not the way fanatics like Hochul see things. This left-wing theocrat says she is entitled to be followed by “apostles” to spread the false gospel of public health charlatans, monomaniacal epidemiologists, corrupt statistical modelers, and their self-righteous enablers in the government and the media.
“We are not through this pandemic. I wished we were,” Hochul said September 26, 2021, at the Christian Cultural Center in New York City.
The Unvaccinated As Sinners
“But I prayed a lot to God during this time. And you know what? God did answer our prayers. He made the smartest men and women, the scientists, the doctors, the researchers, he made them come up with a vaccine that is from God to us. And we must say thank you, God, thank you. And I wear my vaccinated necklace all the time to say I’m vaccinated,” she said.
“All of you, yes, I know, you’re vaccinated. You’re the smart ones. But you know, there’s people out there who aren’t listening to God, what God wants, you know this, you know who they are. I need you to be my apostles, I need you to go out and talk about it and say, We all owe this to each other. We love each other. Jesus taught us to love one another. And how do you show that love, but to care about each other enough to say, please get vaccinated because I love you. I want you to live.”
It was an astonishing thing to hear from an American politician in 2021, especially from a leftist who despite her showy, manipulative, made-for-TV religiosity worships the state and its coercive powers, as opposed to an actual deity. But since she seems to think she herself is the apostle-worthy deity, maybe we are expected to ignore her inconsistencies.
With her words, Hochul, who was never elected governor –she was promoted by operation of law after reptilian proto-fascist Andrew “No One Needs Ten Bullets To Kill A Deer” Cuomo was forced from office by a sexual harassment scandal in August 2021— excommunicated a broad swath of her own constituents who refused to be cowed by the unrelenting waves of pseudoscientific pro-vaccination propaganda.
Hochul also championed New York’s mean-spirited, vindictive COVID-19 vaccination mandate for health care workers that fails to offer a religious exemption. Many people object to vaccination because all of the COVID-19 vaccines currently available relied on abortion-derived fetal cell lines in their production or testing.
Thomas Brejcha, president of the Thomas More Society, a public interest law firm, tried to get the U.S. Supreme Court to block the mandate.
“While 47 states and the federal government respect religious objectors, New York punishes them. … It now allows medically exempt unvaccinated employees to continue normal job responsibilities so long as they wear personal protective equipment … but it refuses to allow unvaccinated religious objectors to work on-site at all,” Brejcha’s application to the high court stated.
On December 13, 2021, the court turned him down in an unsigned order that provided no explanations from the justices rejecting the application. Three conservative justices dissented from the ruling.
In his dissenting opinion (pdf), Justice Neil Gorsuch noted that the previous governor promised there would be a religious exemption. But Hochul inexplicably changed course, offering “no scientific evidence, or even a written explanation, for the decision” to suddenly deny a religious exemption. The justice noted that the exemption denial was effectuated, in Hochul’s words, because no “organized religion” sought it and individuals who wanted it were not “listening to God and what God wants.”
“Now, thousands of New York healthcare workers face the loss of their jobs and eligibility for unemployment benefits,” Gorsuch added.
Brejcha said a federal district court previously “rightly held” that “New York’s extraordinarily punitive COVID vaccine mandate” is “not a neutral law, but a religious gerrymander that targets religious opposition” to available vaccines.
The Crusade Against Gun Rights
Now Hochul is bringing her religious zeal to the ongoing leftist crusade against the constitutional rights of law-abiding gun owners who want to defend themselves and their families from the crime wave that leftist policies have unleashed on America. This campaign, of course, involves intimidating and censoring New Yorkers on social media.
Hochul spearheaded a crackdown on firearms owners, as opposed to actual criminals, after Payton Gendron, a disturbed 18-year-old white man, allegedly shot and killed 10 people May 14 at a supermarket in a predominantly black neighborhood in Hochul’s home town of Buffalo.
Sure enough, on May 15 she found a way to invoke the Almighty in a reaction speech at a Buffalo church.
“Lord, forgive the anger in my heart but channel that into my passion to continue to fight to protect people, get the guns off the streets and silence the voices of hatred and racism and white supremacy all over the internet,” she said at the Sunday service, according to Politico.
“I want to silence those voices now. And make sure that yes, people will talk about Buffalo, but I want them to talk about Buffalo as the last place this ever happened,” Hochul said. “We will let this end right here because we are going to rise up, and all of our white brothers and sisters need to be standing up, as well, in churches all across the state, all across this nation.”
On CNN the same day, she shared her visceral contempt for First Amendment free speech protections.
“I’m calling on the CEOs of all the social media platforms to examine their policies and to be able to look me in the eye and tell me that everything is being done that they can to make sure that this information does not spread,” the governor said.
“I know it’s a huge, vast undertaking, but these companies have a lot of money,” she said. “They have resources, they have technology. Keywords show up. They need to be identified, someone needs to watch this and shut it down the second it appears.”
“And short of that, I — we’ll protect the right to free speech,” Hochul insincerely claimed, adding “but there is a limit.”
“There’s a limit to what you can do, and hate crime is — hate speech is not protected.”
In fact, so-called hate speech, as nebulous a concept as that may be, is indeed protected by the U.S. Constitution. According to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), the only categories of speech that are not protected by the First Amendment are cases of “incitement to imminent lawless action,” “speech that threatens serious bodily harm,” and “speech that causes an immediate breach of the peace,” the so-called fighting words exception.
Hochul’s assault on American constitutional liberties is based on what could be called a theory of collective punishment. This idea that the acts of a few bad people justify sweeping restrictions on everyone is an integral part of the leftist faith.
This attack began May 18 when she signed Executive Order 18, inventing an Office of Counterterrorism to monitor social media and directing state police to escalate monitoring of social media to identify potentially violent extremists. The same day, she also signed Executive Order 19 bolstering New York’s constitutionally dubious red flag laws. The order requires training state troopers to file so-called extreme risk protection orders to seize privately-owned firearms.
On June 6, Hochul signed a series of hastily drafted bills into law, but not before she used religion once again to further these repressive measures.
“I’m a person of faith,” she said at a choreographed signing ceremony.
“My faith tells me that after I bow my head, we get to work. … I will not rest until everything we can do in our power has been done to keep our kids, our families, our citizens safe.”
Body Armor Ban Makes Citizens Vulnerable to Criminals’ Guns
One of the measures makes gun owners vulnerable to criminals by banning the purchase of body armor by people who are not police officers. Another establishes a Task Force on Social Media and Violent Extremism to be housed in the office of state Attorney General Letitia James (D), another gun-hater.
Still another measure establishes a new crime of selling guns that are incapable of being micro-stamped. Microstamping is an unproven technology that purports to help criminal investigators by linking bullets and casings to specific guns. It would also boost the price of lawful firearms by more than $200 per weapon, which is obviously its real purpose.
“The theory behind ‘microstamping’ is that firearms could be equipped with a firing pin or other internal firearm part that could imprint unique microscopic identification marks onto ammunition cartridge cases when the gun is fired,” according to a report by the National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action.
“Each firearm and its corresponding markings would be entered into a computerized database accessible to law enforcement before leaving the factory. According to microstamping proponents, when police recover spent ammunition cases from a crime scene they could then examine the markings on the case and use that information to identify the firearm used in the incident and its owner.”
The problem is the “theory of microstamping does not survive real world application.”
How well it works depends on the kinds of firearm and ammunition used, which “has led researchers to call for further research before the technology is implemented.” Studies found that microstamp markings “were decipherable on just over half of expended cartridge cases” and that the technology “can be defeated with common hand tools in under a minute.”
U.S. Department of Justice research “shows criminals do not typically obtain firearms through retail sources, opting instead to acquire firearms through theft, ‘Off the street/underground market,’ or ‘from a family member or friend, or as a gift.’” This means that linking a found cartridge casing to a perpetrator is unlikely.
After the Supreme Court held 6–3 on June 23 that New York’s concealed carry gun permitting scheme ran afoul of Second Amendment protections, recognizing for the first time ever a constitutional right to carry firearms in public for self-defense, the Left freaked out as it is wont to do whenever something good happens.
The legislature convened an emergency session ostensibly to pass laws to comply with it, but in reality to defy and frustrate the ruling known New York State Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen (pdf).
Hochul excoriated the court for issuing “a reckless decision removing century-old limitations on who is allowed to carry concealed weapons in our state—senselessly sending us backward and putting the safety of our residents in jeopardy.”
Strangely, the governor left out an appeal to religious sentiment in her office’s press release that described the July 1 signing ceremony for the new Concealed Carry Improvement Act, which will take effect September 1 unless the courts scuttle it before then.
“Today, we are taking swift and bold action to protect New Yorkers,” Hochul said. After reviewing the ruling with various supposed experts, “I am proud to sign this landmark legislative package that will strengthen our gun laws and bolster restrictions on concealed carry weapons.”
“I will continue to do everything in my power to combat the gun violence epidemic,” she added, glibly medicalizing the problem of crime in a single sentence.
Before that, in May she said fighting guns became “my calling because too many lives have been lost. “This is not a time for politics.”
The statute Hochul backed thumbs its nose at the Supreme Court, encompassing Big Brother policy innovations that are both horrifying to normal Americans and legally dubious because they are without precedent in American life.
So much for the constitutional protections in the Bruen ruling in which the court held that “when the Second Amendment’s plain text covers an individual’s conduct, the Constitution presumptively protects that conduct.”
“To justify its regulation, the government may not simply posit that the regulation promotes an important interest. Rather, the government must demonstrate that the regulation is consistent with this Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation. Only if a firearm regulation is consistent with this Nation’s historical tradition may a court conclude that the individual’s conduct falls outside the Second Amendment’s ‘unqualified command.’”
But in New York, applicants will have to prove they have “the essential character, temperament, and judgment necessary to be entrusted with a weapon and to use it only in a manner that does not endanger oneself and others,” whatever that means.
Applicants will have to supply character references, take firearm safety training courses, participate in live-fire testing, and undergo background checks. Applicants will be denied if they have misdemeanor convictions for weapons possession or menacing, have had recent treatment for drug-related reasons, and for alcohol-related misdemeanor convictions.
The statute targets concealed carriers by creating a “no carry” presumption for private property that can only be rebutted if the property owner posts signage saying concealed carry is allowed.
It also designates many places as off-limits to concealed weapons, transforming them into gun-free zones, which as everyone knows by now attract crazies intent on perpetrating mass atrocities. Airports, bars and restaurants that serve alcohol, daycare facilities and playgrounds, schools, entertainment venues, hospitals, houses of worship, libraries, polling sites, public demonstrations and rallies, public transit, and Manhattan’s Times Square are on the list.
Big Brother Passes Judgment Based on Facebook Posts
Probably the most disturbing part of the statute is an Orwellian provision that imposes something resembling a Communist Chinese-style social credit system, requiring government officials to review three years of posts on the social media accounts of concealed carry applicants for background checks. Undoubtedly, applicants will be denied based on their political opinions.
The law is “the kind of bill that the Gestapo would be proud of” or “you’d see in Communist China,” Aaron Dorr, executive director of the New York State Firearms Association, said, as reported by NY1.
“This will never survive a court challenge,” Dorr said.
Police are already balking at the huge burden the social-media review requirement will impose on their limited resources.
Judges in each county will “have to review three years of social media of each applicant and have to meet in person with each applicant,” said Dan Sullivan, Oneida County’s assistant pistol licensing officer, according to Utica television station WKTV.
“It’s not a possible task,” Sullivan said.
The New York State Sheriffs’ Association (NYSSA) savaged the new statute.
“We do not support punitive licensing requirements that aim only to restrain and punish law-abiding citizens who wish to exercise their Second Amendment rights,” the group said.
The NYSSA admitted that the legislature had to take “some action … to fill the firearms licensing vacuum created when the Supreme Court struck down New York’s unconstitutional restrictions on our citizens’ right to keep and bear arms.”
“But it did not need to be thoughtless, reactionary action, just to make a political statement,” the association added.
State lawmakers approved “sweeping new criminal justice laws that affect the rights of millions of New York citizens, and which impose burdensome new duties on local government officials, without any consultation with the people who will be responsible for carrying out the provisions of those new laws. This has become a habit with the Legislature and has resulted in other criminal justice disasters such as New York’s so-called Bail Reform Law.”
Perhaps the sheriffs can be forgiven for not recognizing Hochul’s messianic status as she leads New Yorkers on the path to righteousness.
Or maybe they’re just not mindless left-wingers.