FULL AUTO: The Cape Gun Works Blog
By A.K. Arbalest
April 22. 2021
Democratic legislators in Massachusetts have announced another woefully misguided effort to restrict the rights of law abiding gun owners, and the rights of the companies that manufacture firearms. State Representative Frank Moran and State Senator Marjorie Decker (Predictably, both democrats) are now attacking historic Springfield manufacturer Smith and Wesson. Their proposed legislation would outlaw the manufacture of any “assault weapon” that is banned from being sold within the Commonwealth. Smith and Wesson is a major manufacturer of such rifles. Our legislators are alarmed that, although the rifles cannot be sold in MA, they can be legally sold elsewhere in the United States and overseas.
Of course, they have it wrong. The Smith and Wesson rifles are entirely legal to be sold in MA, as long as they conform to the “assault weapon” regulations currently in place. That is, a fixed 10-round magazine, a non-collapsible stock, and other limitations. These Massachusetts compliant models are quite popular among sporting shooters, despite the disadvantages of the state-mandated restrictions.
In a recent statement, Moran said “The safety of our communities is of the utmost importance to me”. What rubbish. Moran and his ilk are the same people who fail utterly to allow enforcement of existing gun laws, and instead cry and bleat for bans and more regulation. Regulation which only serves to limit and restrict the rights of law-abiding, responsible gun owners. Moran and Decker’s legislation does nothing to address the lawlessness that permeates our cities today, and only endangers a historic and important manufacturer. Smith and Wesson provides good jobs in an area of the state that is not, shall we say, known for its economic vibrancy, and such misguided legislation is bound to burden the company further. If S&W quits Massachusetts for a more friendly state, what will become of these jobs, the campus, buildings, and physical plant? What negative tax revenue impact will that have for the City of Springfield? Predictably, liberal legislators give no consideration to such practical matters. As long as we all feel good that we are doing something about “SBR’s” (Scary Black Rifles), that’s all that matters. More chardonnay, dear?
Why are we so unwilling to place blame for the misuse of firearms where it so squarely belongs…on the shoulders of the criminal? Blaming an inanimate object for human misdeeds allows us to believe, falsely, that we have addressed the problem. In fact, all we have done is place an unfair burden on the responsible users of that object, in this case, law-abiding gun owners. And those gun owners come from all political persuasions, not just the right wing. Perhaps it’s time that we find common ground with those others in our society who enjoy the shooting sports, and bring pressure to bear on the legislature? When we come together, there is no limit to what may be accomplished.
Senator Decker and Representative Moran must stop placing the blame on a responsible manufacturer, and concentrate efforts on reducing crime in our Commonwealth through enforcement of existing gun laws. Until the laws we have are vigorously enforced, it makes no sense to formulate more. When bad legislation is passed, there are bound to be unintended consequences. A large vacant lot in Springfield, where a major American company once stood, may be one of them.