New York Reload

From NYC To EDC — The Las Vegas Move To Freedom
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For anyone not familiar with my previous articles, the primary takeaways were don’t live in New York, and if you do, don’t ask NYPD for information, and if you do, ignore it and call your FFL. Legally obtaining a firearm in NYC was an arduous, expensive task and training with said firearm wasn’t any easier.

I equate life as a gun owner in the Big Sour Apple to the plight of Sisyphus, the mythological King of Ephyra, doomed to spend eternity pushing a boulder uphill. But in this case he has to wrap the boulder in red tape and each trip up the hill requires notarization and a non-refundable check made out to NYPD. Since New York tried so hard to prevent me from getting a gun, they must make it easy to move out of state and permanently remove guns from the jurisdiction, right?

Nope.

Flash forward a year or so since my last article. I’ve fled from NYC to America — more specifically to Las Vegas, Nevada and yes, I have to make a conscious effort not to pronounce it Nevahda. As a new, yet proud Nevadan, I maintain my membership to the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association for reasons that will become self-evident. I was naive to think NYC would let me go without a fight, and just to prove I refuse to learn from my mistakes, I called NYPD and asked what was required to legally remove guns from the city.

Head Pain

I was told I would have to supply my FFL with a notarized letter stating my intentions to move to a jurisdiction not requiring licensing. Said letter would list start and destination FFLs, gun make, model, caliber and serial numbers and my handgun and long gun license numbers. I jumped through the hoops, did exactly what I was told and called my FFL so they could tell me the letter I mentioned isn’t what I needed.

Serves me right for listening to NYPD. They were probably too busy playing with LRADs to listen to my question. What my FFL told me, and what NYPD should have known, was to download the Request Permission to Sell Firearms form. Yes, you read that correctly.

https://www.nyc.gov/html/nypd/downloads/pdf/permits/request_permission_to_sell_firearms.pdf
Ironic, I thought, I need permission to sell an item they almost didn’t let me have in the first place.

Again I listed the make, model, caliber and serial number of every gun I owned, added my local shop as both the FFL conducting the transaction and the buyer, even though I wasn’t selling, but apparently that’s how this works. I faxed the form, along with copies of my handgun and long gun licenses to the Incident Section Supervisor of the NYPD License Division. After waiting several days I was allowed to call and receive a log number.

Once I had the log number, I could finally go to my FFL and begin the transfer, which included half an hour of paperwork and a waiting period of approximately two weeks. NYC’s final act of defiance toward my rejection of its values, or lack thereof. Knowing I’d have no use for my 4+1 shotgun in the free world, I sold it to offset the transfer costs. I should have done the same with my 10-round mags, which to their credit, make excellent paperweights and in concert, satisfactory doorstops.

To-Do List NY Style

Viva Las Vegas

I confess a certain amount of culture shock from my move across the country. It wasn’t so much the lower cost of living or even the slot machines waiting for me at the gate as I stepped off the plane, but walking into a store, choosing a gun off the rack and 10 minutes later walking out with it. The only requirement was a permanent Nevada driver’s license. I purchased a 7+1 Mossberg 500 for $325, whereas its NYC compliant predecessor cost me $431.

To this end I’m no longer a victim of price gouging and ammo shortages —endemic to NY’s panic buying as a way of life. No more waking up early to beat the crowd to the one Walmart that may have received ammo that day. Now when I need a box of ammo, I go to one of the many FFLs nearby and buy one. For less than the cost of a one-bedroom Queens apartment, I now have a house with a patio big enough for a BBQ — and a gun cleaning table. No more clearing off my computer desk, draping towels over it and opening the windows.

A trip to the range is no longer like a trip to the gallows where the preparation included unloading mags, locking gun boxes, gathering paperwork and receiving my last rights. Range day in NY was never an outing, just an errand. Now a trip to the range is just one of the things I do over the course of my day, and the vibe is completely different.

Going to a range in New York always felt like attending a wake for the second amendment. In Las Vegas people are having a good time and talking about things other than gun laws and politics. It’s normal to see children accompany their parents to gun shops because it’s just another thing they’re doing that day. I’ve talked openly about guns and concealed carry with coworkers, barbers, random strangers and even a postal worker who took notice when I mailed the last issue of Handgunner I wrote for to my mom.

Me? CCW?

The process of obtaining my CCW license required a few hours of class time, a qualifying exam at a range — where somehow I managed to muddle my way through one-handed shooting and reloading — and a few hours at the police station to submit all the paperwork. In the three or four months I waited, I rented guns and researched holsters and carry methods. After all was said and done, getting a CCW permit in Las Vegas was easier than getting a permit to own a gun in NYC.

My CCW permit even doubled as a background check when I finally purchased my shiny new EDC, which I carried out of the shop to my car and out of habit left it unloaded in its box stored in the trunk. It’s a problem I’ve since worked through. I carried for two weeks until an RSO pointed out my rear sight was misaligned, which is just as well as it explains why my group was off to the left. I sent it back to the manufacturer for repair.

Despite this renaissance of lifestyle, it seems no matter how far I run, New York seems to find me. Before I moved, the City of North Las Vegas (not to be confused with northern Las Vegas) was already violating the Nevada constitution with its own anti-gun laws. Since arriving, Question 1 passed and Las Vegas Sheriff “Scummy” Joe Lombardo came out against “high capacity” magazines. Feel free to petition Nevada Secretary of State Barbara K. Cegavske to recall him from office if that’s still happening by the time you read this.

While I’m at it, the water in this town is hard as nails. Another year I’ll probably hate this place too.

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