When the first NJ SAFE was about to launch in 2015, William Korman got a last-minute email from conference creator John Willett asking if he was available to jump in and lend a hand.
For this year’s third installment of NJ SAFE on Sept. 23, Korman — named last year as chair of shows and public outreach for the Coalition of New Jersey Firearm Owners — will be an exhibitor.
The synergy is clear; in fact, the CNJFO was also created in 2015. Its mission: eliminate the “justifiable need” clause for attempting to obtain a CCW permit in New Jersey.
“We all breathed a sigh of relief with the nomination of Donald Trump as president and were pleased with the selection of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court,” Korman says. “While we are eagerly awaiting H.R. 38 (the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017) to come up for a vote in the House of Representatives, we aren’t holding our breath for things to go our way without a fight.”
Winning one battle would not win the ensuing war, he cautions.
“If H.R. 38 did go through Congress and got passed, we know that New Jersey’s state Legislature would suddenly cry foul. And suddenly, the 10th Amendment (asserting states’ rights) — which wasn’t a concern to them with the Affordable Care Act — would be their battle cry in fighting against our Second Amendment rights.”
And then there is that gubernatorial vote Nov. 7, less than two weeks after NJ SAFE.
“With Phil Murphy, who wants to further hinder our constitutional and civil rights, running for governor, we have a whole new fight on our hands,” Korman says. “Considering all this, there is really no good guess as to how long it would take to fight justifiable need. I do know, however, that an educated and proactive society is a more effective society in imposing our will upon our legislators. Our fight continues to be educating our fellow New Jersey citizens of their constitutional rights and how they are being stripped from us. And we must be vocal, and remain vocal, until our fight is won.”
NJ SAFE plays a significant part in coalescing and amplifying that clarion call for the right to bear arms.
“NJ SAFE offers a New Jersey venue to get our own heavy hitters out to share the most up-to-date info on what’s going on within the state concerning our 2A rights and what is the best plan of action for fighting for those rights,” Korman asserts. “At the same time, it brings together Facebook friends who you normally don’t get to see in person. By the end of the day, all in attendance come away with a renewed vow to fight side by side with our brothers and sisters against those who oppose freedom.”
His own call to arms came in 2012 after Obama was re-elected. “The writing was on the wall that he wanted to do whatever he could to diminish or remove our Second Amendment right. Deep down, it felt as if it was a now-or-never choice. Upon purchasing a gun and befriending others within our local pro-2A community, I became active as an advocate for the 2A community.”
And that community needs to grow — fast.
“We who are active in the fight for our 2A rights aren’t looking for a select few to do all the fighting,” he says. “We want to get a lot more people joined together to offer a little fight to the cause. The greater our numbers as a group is in direct proportion to our effectiveness in our fight for Liberty. As Ronald Reagan stated so eloquently, ‘Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. … It must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation.’ ”
Follow the CNJFO at their website.