Read this on the Clinton Mass Tea Party Website.
It’s clear so far that Rep. Naughton is using the gun issue to promote his name.
Naughty Naughton is making the rounds….
Eight hours of ‘testimony’.
We were alerted when the buses showed up with kids engaged by the Mayors Against Guns or whatever the heck they call themselves today….an anti-gun group. They would have fit in well in 1940-era Germany…….
A bunch of gun-haters without jobs, non-taxpayers, etc. spend a day giving testimony….
Meanwhile, the few Constitution, Freedom Loving True Americans who were able to show (because most of us can’t take time off from work, after all Deval needs the tax money to pay for Democrat votes via phoney corruption EBT card frauds, etc., but alas, I digress)…:
WORCESTER — The 10 state lawmakers who listened to nearly eight hours of testimony Monday on more than 50 pieces of proposed gun control legislation will have to sort through the emotions of aggrieved victims’ families and the fear of gun owners, who worry that they will not be safe without their guns and that their rights will be eroded.
The lawmakers will also have to weigh what type of mental illness records officials should be privy to when they consider whether a person qualifies for a firearm license, and to what extent Massachusetts should share mental health information with other states.
More than 350 people attended the hearing at Assumption College that finally came to a close at 5:45 p.m.
State Rep. Harold P. Naughton Jr., D-Clinton, and state Sen. James E. Timilty, D-Walpole, the House and Senate chairmen on the Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security, conducted the hearing into bills on firearms, including gun licensing and regulations, hunting and safety.
Several people, including District 4 City Councilor Sarai Rivera, asked lawmakers to consider other issues that tie into gun violence, such as poverty, education and health.
Ms. Rivera also spoke on a personal level about the shooting death of her nephew, Nathan Otero, in October. His killer has not been found.
“Do not forget the humanity of what’s happening out there,” she said.
Also present were Fitchburg Mayor Lisa Wong; members of the Greater Worcester Coalition against Gun Violence, which is part of the Massachusetts Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence; Grandmothers Against Gun Violence; Gun Owners’ Action League; National Rifle Association; and, more than 20 employees of Kahr Arms, which manufactures firearms in Worcester, but is based in New York.
Doug Williams, an engineer with Kahr, said, “We’re not nearly as worried about our company as we are about our country” and people’s disregard for the Constitution.
Jack McGuigan, director of government relations/state affairs for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which is based in Newtown, Conn., pointed out that Massachusetts does not routinely forward mental health information to the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
State Rep. David P. Linsky, D-Natick, said one of the bills he had filed would bring the state into compliance with that.
Gun control advocates spoke in favor of limiting gun purchases to one per person per month, requiring background checks even for private sales, and limiting magazine clips to seven rounds, among other measures.
The Rev. Liz Walker of Roxbury Presbyterian Church, a former WBZ-TV news anchor, spoke in favor of a rule limiting purchases to one a month, although she said it might put some of the businesses in the troubled Boston neighborhood where she works out of business.
Several gun owners spoke against the idea of requiring that guns be kept at a shooting range or club rather than in people’s homes.
Public safety is better served by members’ guns at their homes than “unattended in a cabin in the woods,” said Art O’Leary, president of the Leominster Sportsmen’s Association.
Mr. O’Leary also suggested raising taxes on movies and video games and putting the money toward outdoor activities for children.
Marcy Johnson of Worcester did not speak in favor of a particular policy, but as the mother of a shooting victim, she spoke about the problem as she sees it.
“Our children … they’re not even making it to their 21st birthday. The impact, it’s really extreme,” she said.
Mr. Linsky pointed out the trouble with legislating solutions.
“There is not a single type of gun violence,” he said, saying there are three kinds: suicide, homicide and accidental.
“Each one of these different types of tragedies requires a different kind of legislative response.”
The disparities were evident in the room.
While Scott Van Dyke of Peabody worried that “a three-round clip isn’t going to do it when they (the government) show up in their armored vehicles,” young people from Boston said they are already suffering the violence that others fear, but they don’t choose to own a gun.
One after another of the Boston youths chronicled the effect of guns in their lives: a boyfriend killed; a man who had a gun held to his head when he was 6 years old.
Teen Empowerment member Arlene Baldwin, 20, of Dorchester, echoed a figure Rev. Walker used earlier in the hearing and said, “Boston is not strong at all.
“There have been 84 shootings since the Boston Marathon. How strong does that sound?”
Many, including the teenagers and young adults from Boston, said the problem is illegal guns, such as those bought by someone else and then passed on to someone who was not eligible to make the purchase.
Gun owners who testified agreed that the issue is with those who carry guns illegally, and said that punishing those who leap over hurdles of the system and own the weapons with all the proper permits is the wrong approach.
Other participants, such as Ilyse Levine-Kanji of Westboro, who lost both her grandfather and her boss to gun violence, argued for tighter controls.
“If only those two men (who killed her grandfather) had just had knives … he could have had a chance,” she said.
Local activist Scott Schaeffer-Duffy, who said he had seen the violence guns do on both the local and international level, said, “The choice is not between cowardice and violence,” and he urged people to look at the power of nonviolence.
Joan Webster of Worcester referenced Thomas Jefferson’s quote: “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots.”
“I don’t think he was thinking about the blood of 5-year-olds,” she said.
“Eight children die every day by the bullet of a gun,” said Kyrah Altman of the Leominster-based youth organization Let’s Empower, Advocate and Do, or LEAD.
That adds up to one Newtown shooting every two days, she added.
“We all want to stop gun violence,” said Al Prescott, a firearms
instructor and a member of the Gun Owners Action League. “Legal gun owners are not the problem.”
Molly Malloy of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, said more preschoolers are killed with guns every year than are law enforcement officials.
But Brian Huber of Pittsfield said he carries a handgun to protect his child, who uses a wheelchair. He spoke against limiting the capacity of gun magazines.
State Rep. George N. Peterson, Jr., R-Grafton, said, “The system that we have has been a terrible failure,” noting that gun violence has risen in the state.
He spoke in favor of House Bill 3264, one of several firearm-related bills he sponsored, which he said would reduce the gun licensing system to a single license that was age-dependent.
Part of Monday’s testimony dealt with how much discretion local police chiefs should have over granting gun licenses.
State Sen. Harriette L. Chandler, D-Worcester, credited Worcester Police Chief Gary J. Gemme’s strict approach with reducing gun violence in the city.
One woman, who described herself as an NRA member and gun owner as well as a theater teacher, said ome of the restrictions proposed would bar her from using props that involve gun powder or costumes that use chain mail or other body armor authorized by her school district.
Paul Robichaud said he and his wife live next door to drug dealers, and that when he is not home, she needs access to a pistol as well as a rifle to defend herself.
“The Second Amendment is not negotiable,” said Steven Seals, who closed his testimony by adding that the state “needs more gun laws like a moose needs a hat rack.”
The next hearing is tentatively scheduled for the week of the July 22.