Tuesday, April 05, 2005

More Massachusetts Insanity

I was reading mASSBackwards' post on an "accidental" shooting in New Bedford, Massachusetts. He mentioned the Massachusetts Gun Roster. That caused me to flashback to my four years living and being a gun nut in Massachusetts. That flashback caused me to have a Kim du Toit style Red Curtain of Blood moment.

The roster and Attorney General Tom Reilly's interpretation make a truly horrendous situation for Massachusetts gunnies. The Executive Office of Public Safety (EOPS) sponsors tests of handguns. Independent labs subject firearms to drop tests, melting point test, and other tests. If a handgun passes, it's listed on the EOPS roster. Here is the most recent roster I could find. It says that for more recent listings you should go here. Of course, that link leads to another link, which eventually leads you here in a big ugly circle. In other words you can't get here from here.

Lets look at the roster we have. It lists a number of fine guns with Smith & Wesson, a Massachusetts company, well represented. You'll note each company lists models which are in turn broken down by submodels (i.e., stainless steel as opposed to steel). Each entry represents an investment a company made since they have to submit several guns of each model for damaging tests.

You'll note that cheaper guns and some small ones and not on the list. For instance, we see Berettas, but no Beretta Bobcats. We don't see Taurus. We can't find single-action revolvers made by Uberti. If they're not here, you can't sell them in Massachusetts.

You see, the state wants to protect you from poorly made and unsafe guns. That's why you can't buy Les Baer or Kimber 1911s. That's why you can't buy Sig Trailside or Pardini competition .22 pistols. Massachusetts is looking out for you.

Now, bear with me, because it gets even more complicated. EOPS created its list and then Attorney General Reilly decided that its list does not meet all of his requirements. Based on his reading of state consumer protection law, he declares that all guns sold in Massachusetts must have child safety features, load indicators, magazine safety disconnects for semi-autos, and tamper-resistant serial numbers. Not all guns on EOPS' roster have these features and therefore can't be sold in Massachusetts.

You have a list, but you really don't have a list. And, you have more questions. What is a child safety feature in Tom Reilly's eyes? What is a tamper-resistant serial number? By the way, Tom Reilly may run for and could become Massachusetts' next governor. Oh, the humanity.

What does this do for gunnies? Read this page from Four Seasons Guns in Woburn, MA for a nightmare about selling Glocks in Massachusetts. Here is their list (complete with gun p0rn) of new guns they can't sell in Massachusetts. You see Kahr listed on Four Season's page? What you say, Kahr is on EOPS' roster, sorry Attorney General Reilly says, "NO! You can't have it."

So, what's a gunnie to do? Bill and I moved out of Massachusetts to New Hampshire. We figured we would run afoul of an obscure state gun law and lose our gun rights forever. We applaud those like Jay G, mASSBackwards, and others who continue to fight. Meanwhile we will support gun rights in New Hampshire and elsewhere as we enjoy shooting our Sig Trailside, Springfield Armory 1911, and other handguns. Of course we face a 45 minute commute each way and we still pay Massachusetts taxes (grrrrrrrr) because we still work there. Beyond that, freedom feels so good.

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