Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

“Arrest Me:” Pittsburgh Mayor Resorts to Theatrics After DA’s Warning About Illegal Gun Control

Friday, January 25, 2019

“Arrest Me:” Pittsburgh Mayor Resorts to Theatrics After DA’s Warning About Illegal Gun Control

We have been reporting for some time on efforts by Pittsburgh’s mayor and city council to enact sweeping gun control, despite essentially universal agreement that they are prohibited from doing so by the state’s constitution, statutes, and judicial precedent. To say the errant officials have reacted to the widespread criticism of their plan with defiance and shamelessness is an understatement. This week, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto ratcheted up his grandstanding even further, daring Allegheny County’s anti-gun district attorney to arrest him and claiming to be “highly offended” at the suggestion he can’t simply ignore state law.

Peduto’s latest theatrics came in response to a recent letter that Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala sent to Councilman Corey O’Connor, warning of the potential legal ramifications of pursing passage of the unlawful ordinances.  O’Connor is a leading proponent of the legislation, which includes a broad ban on popular semiautomatic firearms and new authority for judges to order the seizure of lawfully-owned guns.

Zappala expressed his own sympathy for the goal of increased gun control but counseled that the “City Council does not have the authority to pass such legislation” and that “the legislative effort needs to come from the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.” He also warned that “the legislation currently before Council, if passed, will be found unconstitutional” and that its proponents could potentially be courting criminal liability.

O’Connor, while offering no legal defense of the planned ordinances, nevertheless insisted the actions were justified because he and his fellow gun control advocates were “doing what’s right” and were “on the right side of history.”

Mayor Peduto then leapt to grab some of the spotlight for himself, issuing a challenge this week before the local media for Zappala to “[a]rrest me.” Characterizing Zappala’s letter as a threat to prosecute those who “don’t vote a certain way,” Peduto rhetorically asked, “What country do we live in?”

This prompted Zappala’s office to fire back with a statement of its own: “The statements from the city do not accurately reflect the content of the letter that the District Attorney communicated to council. The letter has no relation to politics or policy. It is about process and legality.”

Meanwhile, the answer to Peduto’s question is that we live in the United States of America, a country where even high public officials are supposed to be answerable to the law, including when they find it to be inconvenient to their own personal or policy objectives.

But let’s be clear. The efforts in Pittsburgh have nothing to do with conscience or public safety. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, even as it endorsed gun control generally, correctly characterized Peduto’s and O’Connor’s gun control effort  as a waste of time and taxpayer resources that would “save not one life.”

The scheming officials in Pittsburgh have no realistic hope of passing enforceable gun control, but they obviously see pretending to do so as a way to increase their own public profile and to pander to a partisan base, all while leaving the city’s taxpayers to foot the inevitable legal bills that will result.

Not only is this cynical, unprincipled, and wasteful, it is unoriginal. Previous administrations in Pittsburgh and other anti-gun Pennsylvania cities have done exactly the same thing, using similarly high-minded but empty rhetoric. We outlined their failures at length in a prior article.

It is ironic and shameful that Pittsburgh’s mayor and city council would exploit a horrendous crime committed within their city to claim their own conscience-based exemptions from the law. This creates a terrible dilemma for the city’s law-abiding residents, stuck between violent criminals on the one hand and lawless public officials on the other.

TRENDING NOW
The Dominoes Begin to Fall: NJ Amends Permit Rules After Bruen

News  

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

The Dominoes Begin to Fall: NJ Amends Permit Rules After Bruen

New Jersey’s acting Attorney General, Matthew J. Platkin, issued a directive “clarifying requirements for carrying firearms in public” a day after the historic ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court in New York State Rifle & Pistol Assoc. v. ...

California Leaks Personal Data of Carry Permit Holders

News  

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

California Leaks Personal Data of Carry Permit Holders

On Monday June 27, California Attorney General Rob Bonta announced the launch of the California Department of Justice (DOJ)’s Firearms Dashboard Portal. The data tool was designed to give granular firearm transaction and Concealed Carry Weapons (CCW) permit ...

SCOTUS Reverses and Remands Two NRA-ILA Backed Magazine Cases

News  

Thursday, June 30, 2022

SCOTUS Reverses and Remands Two NRA-ILA Backed Magazine Cases

One week after our landmark victory in NYSRPA v. Bruen, the Supreme Court issued orders in two other NRA-ILA backed cases. Those cases, ANJRPC v. Bruck and Duncan v. Bonta, challenge New Jersey and California laws that ban magazines capable ...

NRA Wins Supreme Court Case, NYSRPA v. Bruen

News  

Second Amendment  

Thursday, June 23, 2022

NRA Wins Supreme Court Case, NYSRPA v. Bruen

The National Rifle Association (NRA) welcomes the Supreme Court’s decision in NYSRPA v. Bruen. The Court affirmed that the right to bear arms does not stop at a person’s front door. This is the most ...

Supreme Court Gets it Right, Congress Gets it Wrong

Friday, June 24, 2022

Supreme Court Gets it Right, Congress Gets it Wrong

On Thursday, SCOTUS released a historic decision in the NYSRPA v. Bruen case when they found the Second Amendment protects the right of law-abiding Americans to carry a firearm outside of the home. Despite the hysteria from ...

California: Legislature Ignores SCOTUS and Continues to Push Gun Control

Monday, June 27, 2022

California: Legislature Ignores SCOTUS and Continues to Push Gun Control

Last week, the United States Supreme Court handed down a huge victory for gun owners, confirming what has been known all along: that the 2nd Amendment is not a second class right and should not be treated ...

The So-called “Boyfriend Loophole” is About Undermining the Second Amendment

News  

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

The So-called “Boyfriend Loophole” is About Undermining the Second Amendment

At present, federal law generally bars anyone who is convicted in any court for a domestic violence felony, or any felony for that matter, from possessing firearms. But federal law also imposes a lifetime firearm possession prohibition on ...

Treachery! White House Moves to Strangle U.S. Ammunition Supply

News  

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Treachery! White House Moves to Strangle U.S. Ammunition Supply

Last night, news broke that the Biden Administration is taking behind-the-scenes steps to further strangle the already constricted market for ammunition in the United States. The move could result in a reduction of the commercial production ...

New Jersey: Legislature to Vote on Gov. Murphy’s Gun Bans Tomorrow

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

New Jersey: Legislature to Vote on Gov. Murphy’s Gun Bans Tomorrow

Anti-gun politicians in Trenton will have their opportunity this week to lash out against New Jersey gun owners, who secured a major victory last week in the United States Supreme Court.

New Jersey: Chaos Reigns Supreme In Trenton

Friday, June 24, 2022

New Jersey: Chaos Reigns Supreme In Trenton

Trenton Democrats desperately want to pass something, anything. They just are not sure what. So far, their approach has been to throw everything at the wall and see what sticks. Make no mistake, Gov. Phil Murphy loaded ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.