GOAL NEws

1/4/13 Gun Control Meeting Update

Brief Summary by GOAL Exec. Director Jim Wallace:

As it turns out although GOAL was not invited to the Gun Control meeting hosted by Rep. David Linsky at the State House, I was allowed to listen in, but due to the packed room I was forced to listen from the hallway for most of the meeting.

There were several members of the law enforcement community present including Wayne Sampson of the Mass Chiefs of Police. John Rosenthal was on hand to provide his typical sound bite rhetoric. Angus McQuilken, former Chief of Staff for Senator Cheryl Jacques sponsor of the 1998 Gun Control Act, was on hand to provide his “experience”.

At one point in supporting the “One Gun a Month” proposal, Mr. McQuilken told the crowd that under current law people could buy firearms in bulk and sell them out of their trunks. This statement was quickly shot down by Rep. George Peterson as being blatantly untrue and any such act would be highly illegal.

Rep. Linsky asked from input from his guests and those in attendance.

Several subjects came up, but were not discussed in any detail including:

  • Forced liability insurance for anyone wishing to own a firearm.
  • Expanding the “suitability” standards for FID cards.
  • Having all gun license applicants sign a waiver granting police chiefs the authority to conduct their own mental health checks on applicants. When queried by someone from the audience about privacy issues, a response from the head table that if privacy was a concern then people have the option not to own guns.
  • The One Gun a Month (Lawful Citizen Imprisonment Act) was brought up on more than one occasion.
  • The so-called loopholes in the assault weapons laws that allow compliant guns to be manufactured and sold.
  • How guns are getting into the hands of criminals.
  • Mental health background checks in general, etc...

There were also several legislators on hand that represented the interests of lawful gun owners pointing out the complexity and inefficiency of the laws.

Rep. George Peterson also countered Mr. Rosenthal’s statement regarding the so-called success of Massachusetts gun laws. He presented factual reports from state government agencies that actually show a steady increase in gun crime and homicides since the passage of the 1998 law.

Outside the meeting room a press conference was set up by Rep. Linsky and others. Afterwards GOAL was on hand to address the press corps and provide information and answer any questions.

-Jim Wallace 1/4/13

 

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