Do New York Values Include Justice?

Cuomo’s “3 Amigos” Get Due Process,

But Deny it to Citizens via SAFE Act;

2 Amigos Convicted of Federal Corruption Felonies

1 Conviction Overturned after a Year; Former Federal Prosecutor Preet Baharara Tweets:  “The evidence was strong. The Supreme Court changed the law. I expect Sheldon Silver to be retried and re-convicted.

Governor Cuomo, in a state-of-the-state address, once referred to himself and the top two political leaders in New York State as the “three amigos.”

The other two amigos were Democrat Assembly Leader Sheldon Silver and Republican Leader of the State Senate Dean Skelos.  Two of the three amigos – Silver and Skelos – were subsequently tried and convicted of felony corruption under federal law and sentenced to prison in early 2016.  Skelos was sentenced to five years in prison; Silver was sentenced to 12 years in prison.

More than a year after being convicted and sentenced to prison the two felons have yet to be measured for orange jumpsuits.  These convicted political felons enjoy their constitutional right of “due process,” pending their appeal, after they denied it to citizens.

Then, more than a year after being convicted and sentenced in July 2017, Sheldon Silver’s conviction was overturned by a federal appeals court, based on a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision that “narrowed the legal definition of corruption.”¹

Preet Bharara, former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York and who prosecuted both Silver and Skelos, said it best on Twitter:  “The evidence was strong. The Supreme Court changed the law. I expect Sheldon Silver to be retried and re-convicted.¹

The current acting U.S. attorney, Joon H. Kim, reinforced this (emphasis added):  “We look forward to presenting to another jury the evidence of decades-long corruption by one of the most powerful politicians in New York State history,” Mr. Kim said. “Although it will be delayed, we do not expect justice to be denied.” ¹

These three amigos rammed through the SAFE Act (Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act of 2013) overnight with no public participation — a law which denies due process to an entire class of citizens.

Prior to sentencing, Felon Skelos was so proud of his leadership in pushing Governor Cuomo’s SAFE Act, he used it as part of his plea to avoid prison. 

In Skelos’ Sentencing Memorandum submitted to the court, his attorneys listed the convicted felon’s support for the SAFE Act among his “most notable legislative achievements.”  In that document, attorney and friend Paul Weidenbaum writes that Skelos believed it “was the right thing to do for the people of New York State.” ²

From a constitutional rights standpoint, he should have written, “the right thing to do TO the people of New York State.”  Politicians have forgotten how to blush.

Here we have a convicted felon at the top of the political pyramid in Albany who enjoys the full benefit of due process; and who sought mercy on the basis of the SAFE Act – a law that violates the principles of good government (open, participatory) and denies due process to an entire group of citizens under its umbrella – firearms owners.

Why any fair minded person – liberal or conservative, Democrat or Republican – would not want to correct this injustice explains why citizens are fed up with political bosses and dogmatic political theology that break the rules of constitutional balance and fairness.

This is why the 2nd Amendment is about more than firearms.  It is the canary in the coal mine — an early warning system that liberty is dying and it is not limited to 2nd Amendment freedom.  Our constitutional rights are an ecological system – a delicate balance – an infringement on one freedom inevitably invites transgressions on others.  We are seeing this with the SAFE Act.

We need leadership to restore due process — leadership that declares citizens are entitled to as much due process as political elites and convicted felons.  Now that would constitute a set of New York Values of which we can all be proud.

It is up to us.  Organize now for elections in 2018:

REFERENCE LINKS:

¹ Sheldon Silver’s 2015 Corruption Conviction Is Overturned
The New York Times, by Benjamin Weiser, July 13, 2017

² Skelos’ Sentencing Memorandum — submitted as a means to avoid prison, can be found here, as part of a Gannett article:  Skelos points to SAFE Act in bid to avoid prison, Press & Sun Bulletin, by Jon Campbell, March 24, 2016   http://www.pressconnects.com/story/news/local/new-york/2016/03/24/skelos-points-safe-act-bid-avoid-prison/82209000/

 

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What you need to know about SAFE Act – Part 2

 Governor Cuomo’s “SAFE Act”Anything But!

Denies Due Process to Citizens

New York State is often described as the most corrupt state in the nation.  “In the past 13 years, at least 29 New York State legislators, or former legislators, and other elected state officials have been convicted of felonies, misdemeanors or violations,” according to a news report.1

That corruption led to the passage of the so-called SAFE Act (Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act of 2013). Touted as a “gun control” law it goes far beyond the 2nd Amendment; it denies due process to any citizen targeted under the law.  They did this by rewriting the state mental health law — can’t have crazies owning guns, right?

Note that public discussion of the SAFE Act is centered around “gun control.”  The denial of due process is never mentioned — purposeful ignorance.  Better for anti-rights government officials of both parties to appear to focus on the 2nd Amendment rather than let people know they’re also going after the 4th, 5th, 6th and 14th Amendments.    

What else do we know about the SAFE Act:

  • It was passed overnight with no hearings, and no public participation permitted; no input from law enforcement or medical experts.
  • The New York Civil Liberties Union said: “[Governor Cuomo’s closed door] legislative process makes a mockery of the core democratic principles of transparency, accountability, and public participation in government.”
  • It does not comply with federal HIPAA law (the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), according to the New York State Psychiatric Association.

Hard to believe?

Constitutional law professor James Jacobs of New York University writes: “The individual who is reported [under the SAFE Act] is not entitled to any due process, or even notice, before being stripped of his rights.” 2

As one woman told us, “I feel this law is just the beginning of taking many more of our constitutional rights away. It makes me nervous!!”  

We should all feel nervous, even those of us who live in other states.  States like New York, California, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Maryland are “beta” sites, incubators for more laws that restrict more rights.

The anti-rights forces aren’t stopping at the Second Amendment or New York, or California.  In many states, they are attacking free speech, due process, and other civil liberties.  Gangs – many with masks – break windows, burn cars, shut down free speech on college campuses.  Their violence ranges from personal threats – to attempted murder.3

How could New York State, or any government, deny due process to an entire group of citizens?

Rewrite the state Mental Health Law … to use a new definition of “mental health” that permits the state to easily allege a citizen is “mentally defective,” even based on false reports of INvoluntary commitment from hospitals.  Provision 9.46 of the SAFE Act is now part of New York State’s amended Mental Health Law.

Under the revised law, medical providers are still required to consider the “likelihood” that a patient is a danger to self or others . . .

BUT the revised law eliminates one previously critical standard:

The “new” 9.46 Section deliberately omits “imminence.”  In other words, medical providers are no longer required to consider whether the person is an “imminent danger” to self or others.

We’re now seeing more examples of hospital staff deliberately or inadvertently falsely identifying a patient’s hospital admission as “INvoluntary.”  This immediately triggers a report to ISARS – the Integrated SAFE Act Reporting System – followed by confiscation of a pistol permit and firearms.

Constitutional law professor Jacobs says the SAFE Act provides “no opportunity for the person labelled mentally ill and dangerous … to dispute the diagnosis and prediction.”  It does not even require the subject of a Section 9.46 report be notified.2

Citizens are entitled to the same due process enjoyed by political elites and convicted felons.  No one is above the law, supposedly.  But we see more examples of one law for government elites and a different law for We the People.

If we want to keep our rights, stand up.  Contact your state legislators and tell them:

  • To publicly state their support of due process for all
  • To restore due process in New York State – repeal the SAFE Act.
  • Send them the link to this video and ask them to post and share it with their constituents:  https://youtu.be/B9CgatO6ML8

Spread the word:  Please post and share the 4-minute video with as many friends, groups and websites as possible.

Defend Freedom.  Find this and other videos here:  https://newyorkfreedomwatch.com/watch-our-video/

REFERENCE SOURCES:

1 29 NYS official convicted, 0 ethics reform laws passed in 2016, syracuse.com, The Post-Standard, May 13, 2016  http://www.syracuse.com/state/index.ssf/2016/05/ethics_reform_in_albany.html

2 Preventing Dangerous Mentally Ill Individuals from Obtaining and Retaining Guns: New York’s SAFE Act, New York University School of Law, Working Paper No. 15-42, by James B. Jacobs, Warren E. Burger Professor of Law at NYU, and Zoe Fuhr, research fellow at NYU’s Center for Research in Crime and Justice. © 2016, James B. Jacobs and Zoe Fuhr.  [See ‘Conclusion,’ p. 98.]  http://its.law.nyu.edu/faculty/profiles/representiveFiles/SSRN-id2671410_4F250263-D7FA-DD1D-36DB8B609A210676.pdf

3 30 GOP Congressmen Have Been Attacked or Threatened Since Mayhttp://freebeacon.com/issues/30-gop-congressmen-attacked-threatened-since-may/

See also:  Another Nebraska Democrat celebrates Congressional assassination attempt:  http://leavenworthst.com

For historical perspective:   A Brief History of Radical Left-Wing Violence in Americahttp://www.lifezette.com/polizette/a-brief-history-of-radical-left-wing-violence-in-america/

 

What You Need to Know about SAFE Act – Part 1

Citizen On SAFE Act:  “…this law is just the beginning

of taking many more of our constitutional rights away.

It makes me nervous!!”

Are all citizens entitled to due process?

How would Governor Cuomo answer that question?  How would your state senators and assembly representatives answer that question?  Ask them.

The badly named SAFE Act is unSAFE when it comes to civil liberties.  It denies due process.  This is never mentioned by the governor or elected state officials — purposeful ignorance.  Better to appear to just focus on the 2nd Amendment rather than let people know you’re also going after the 4th, 5th, 6th and 14th Amendments.

The SAFE Act (Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act of 2013) was passed overnight with the leadership of Governor Cuomo and most Republicans and Democrats.

Touted as a “gun control” law, it denies due process to any citizen targeted under the SAFE Act.  They did this by rewriting the state mental health law — can’t have crazies owning guns, right?

Constitutional law professor James Jacobs of New York University confirms: “The individual who is reported [under the SAFE Act] is not entitled to any due process, or even notice, before being stripped of his rights.” 1

It does this by rewriting the state Mental Health Law (section 9.46) in a way that permits the state to easily allege a citizen is “mentally defective,” even based on false reports from hospitals.  To compound the elected leadership’s unethical behavior, the law gives hospitals legal immunity from civil and criminal liability for ‘malpractice’ in terms of false reports.  See the Mental Hygiene Law, Section 94.6 (d) ”The decision of a mental health professional to disclose or not to disclose in accordance with this section, when made reasonably and in good faith, shall not be the basis for any civil or criminal liability of such mental health professional.”

The right to own any firearm can then be denied and all firearms confiscated, with no notice, no hearing, no trial, and no evidence of mental disability.  It is happening now even when a hospital sends a false report to the State Police that someone has been INvoluntarily committed.

For more information, including comments from a citizen whose rights were violated by the SAFE Act, check out our videos:

REFERENCE SOURCES

1 Preventing Dangerous Mentally Ill Individuals from Obtaining and Retaining Guns: New York’s SAFE Act, New York University School of Law, Working Paper No. 15-42, by James B. Jacobs, Warren E. Burger Professor of Law at NYU, and Zoe Fuhr, research fellow at NYU’s Center for Research in Crime and Justice. © 2016, James B. Jacobs and Zoe Fuhr. [See ‘Conclusion,’ p. 98.]  http://its.law.nyu.edu/faculty/profiles/representiveFiles/SSRN-id2671410_4F250263-D7FA-DD1D-36DB8B609A210676.pdf