Steuben County Deputies Union Backs Up Sheriff Cole
Deputies Association: New Gun Laws "Fall Short"
January 21, 2013
BATH, NY - The Deputies Assocation of Steuben County have sent out the following statement:
Deputies Association of the County of Steuben
To the citizens of Steuben County,
The Deputies Association of the County of Steuben, which represents all armed police officers of the Road Patrol Division, Criminal Investigation Unit, Building Security Division, and Civil Division, have unanimously voted to come out publicly in support of Sheriff David V. Cole in his recent public statement in regards to the NY SAFE Act of 2013.
The members of the Deputies Association, who have taken an oath to support and defend the Constitution and the laws governing the State of New York, are now finding themselves at a point of personal conflict in regards to the provisions of this new legislation. When we put on our uniforms and report to work every day, we knowingly undertake an adherent danger in order to ensure the safety of our family, friends and neighbors that we live amongst in our communities. Your Deputy Sheriffs, who respond to calls for service from our citizens every hour of the day, do not want illegal or dangerous weapons in the hands of those who would choose to use them against us in our chosen careers. However, what we do not want to see and it is our obligation to defend, is our rights as citizens to live in a free society where the rights of law abiding citizens are not intruded on as we live our daily lives. The new legislation, which has been enacted at a record pace, seems to contradict many of the virtues and freedoms that we as citizens of our great nation hold dear in our hearts.
While the current new legislation was enacted under the pretense of curbing violent crimes and making our schools and communities safer, we need to stop and take a moment of pause to ensure that the laws cover the topic and issues that face our county, our state, and our nation today. The Deputies of Steuben County feel that if the proper legislative process had not been waived to get these laws passed as quickly as possible, more insight and input from the people charged with their enforcement could have been given the opportunity to try to address the issues at hand. We also feel that this new legislation falls short of the expected goals in the area of firearm safety and education, protection in our school systems, and the other venues that are currently available to criminals who pose a danger to society. As a great man once said, “One of the greatest delusions to the world is the hope that the evils of this world will be cured through legislation.”
The heart of the current debate over the NY SAFE Act of 2013 goes far beyond just the right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed when the founders of our great nation put pen (quill) to paper to establish the documents which still govern us today. We must remember however, that the Second Amendment is your one right that allows our citizens to defend all other the rights guaranteed to us in the Constitution. The (28) twenty-eight sworn Deputy Sheriffs and Investigators of this office will continue to work with Sheriff David V. Cole and the other law enforcement agencies in our communities to ensure that any new legislation, when being enforced, conforms to the standards that we have been trained to uphold as we respond to your moments of crisis when our assistance is needed the most.
We would like to ensure our citizens that we are dedicated in our effort to monitor this growing crisis and try to work with our elected officials and fellow law enforcement brothers and sisters to ensure that we, as sworn law enforcement officers, are fulfilling our oaths of office while still protecting the rights of the people charged with our protection. At this time, it is not the intention of any member of our Association to deprive any law abiding citizen their right to possess any llegally owned firearm that has not committed another crime as defined by the current laws of the State of New York.