No More Muskets? Popular & Educational Reenactment Canceled in New York
What will happen to things like Civil War reenactments with New York's confusing new gun laws? Is it even legal to brandish a musket for historical or entertainment purposes?
That's what organizers of Herkimer County's Living History Weekend found themselves asking recently. They ultimately decided to pull the plug on their educational event, fearing legal backlash.
Local sheriff Scott Scherrer said that lawyers had discouraged carrying out the event due to the confusing wording of the law. Among the law's verbiage is a section that prohibits carrying firearms in "sensitive locations." Public parks and fields are often prime locations for these types of historical battle reenactments.
However, the offices of Governor Kathy Hochul are claiming these fears are unfounded, and historical reenactments can continue:
These laws allow historical reenactments to occur, and there should be no concern otherwise. We will work with legislators and local law enforcement to ensure these events can proceed as they have for centuries. In the meantime, individuals who have lawfully participated in reenactments should continue to do so.
The cancellation of Living History Weekend seemed more of a reactionary and precautionary measure, as opposed to something that "needed" to be canceled. The law currently does not have any language that talks about historical reenactments directly, which is why many organizers were on edge about carrying out their event. But as soon as the details are ironed out by the Governor's office, future events should still be able to go on as planned.