ENDING GUN VIOLENCE

 
 
 

Massachusetts has the best record of gun safety among our fifty states, but despite relentless tragedies of mass shootings, there is an ongoing attack to weaken guns laws at both the state and federal level.  We should support student activism groups like #Enough, in the effort to enact sensible gun control. We need to defend and strengthen the laws we have that protect us today and look for other ways to make all of us safer. We can do this while still protecting the legitimate rights of responsible gun owners.

Of immediate and serious concern is movement at the federal level to sharply expand concealed-carry gun rights.  At the state level, the NRA and its Massachusetts affiliate, GOAL (Gun Owners Action League), are constantly pushing legislation, lawsuits, and lobbying that would result in fewer protections for our residents and increase our levels of gun deaths.  

As governor, I will insure that all of our gun laws are strictly enforced.  I will veto any legislation that would weaken our current laws. I will support the Attorney General in fighting any lawsuits from gun rights activists that have the effect of weakening our gun laws. I will fight any federal action, such as the proposed Concealed-Carry Legislation, that infringes on our laws or weakens of our gun protections. I will remove Ronald Amidon, the Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Fish & Game, who Charlie Baker appointed. We can do better than appoint someone who heads the state’s NRA affiliate and opposes common-sense gun safety measures.

Every time there is another massacre, our political leaders fall back on offering their paltry and even insulting “thoughts and prayers.”  Those thoughts mean nothing unless they are thoughts about how to make change. Those prayers mean nothing unless we are praying for a future in which we have acted decisively to eliminate this relentless and obscene procession of mass murders.

 

We need to improve, defend, and tighten our existing gun laws, while also fixing our broken reporting of mental health issues and response to potential threats.

 

AS GOVERNOR I WILL:


 
  • Outlaw dangerous guns and prohibit the manufacture and sale of semi-automatic guns for civilian use.
  • Prohibit the sale of 50 caliber guns and ammo.

  • Tighten practices around sales and ownership.

  • Expand background checks to private gun transfers and ammunition sales.

  • Require all guns to be registered and gun owners fingerprinted.

  • Establish waiting periods between sale and take-home.

  • Prohibit the sale of online ammunition and
    increase minimum penalties for illegal firearm possession.

  • Support HR 3610 Extreme Risk Protective Orders to ensure family and household members safety (similar to “red flag” provisions elsewhere).

  • Make Massachusetts a “No Open Carry” state (current law prevents open carry only of long guns).

  • Make Massachusetts a Point-of-Contact (POC) state to improve the process of pre-sale checks.

  • Limit the number of handguns a person can purchase in a 30-day period.

  • Share mental health and substance abuse records as part of the gun background check process.

  • Expand treatment for the mentally ill.

  • Ensure people suffering from mental illness with a history of violent behavior get proper treatment and that their condition is properly reported to and recorded in a database used in gun background checks.

  • Work with gun manufacturers to implement gun safety measures.

  • Require guns to micro-stamp each bullet.

  • Implement “smart gun” safety technology.

  • Defend recent gun safety measures now facing court challenges.

  • Apply assault weapons ban to copycat arms.

  • Prohibit  ownership and sales of bump stocks, trigger cranks, and other devices that increase firing speeds.

 
 
This truly feels like the beginning of the end of the gun debate in America,
and I believe it’s the result of two factors. First, in the past two years, there’s been a sharp increase in political engagement and activism in response to the Trump administration’s actions. Second, this is the first national student-led movement in my lifetime.
— Violet Massie-Vereker, high school student and #MeNext? movement founder