Thursday, February 21, 2013

Democracy In Action

Brad_in_MA sent in this heartwarming story about an overzealous town selectman and the democratic process.

Westford Selectmen Withdraw Proposal To Ban Assault Weapons
WESTFORD (CBS) – A thunderous round of applause and a standing ovation greeted the news Wednesday night that a proposed town bylaw to restrict some assault weapons was going to be officially withdrawn.
The overwhelming majority of the close to 400 people who packed a special meeting of the Westford Board of Selectmen opposed the idea.
You know, it's funny. The article takes it upon itself to fact-check NRA President David Keene's comment that "hammers kill more people than guns" (they made sure to correct his statement to rifles only), yet they failed to properly assess the number of people at the meeting in opposition to this plan (well in excess of 7-800, easily, based on folks who were there). They also neglect to mention that this was the re-scheduled meeting, caused when the first meeting had so many people in attendance that the fire marshal had to close it down.

If you read into the article, Selectman Jeffries is whining about outside forces that helped stop this ban. What's especially ironic is that the ban was so poorly and hastily written (other bylaw changes for 2012 written in 2011 have not been discussed yet) that it could have affected people outside of Westford driving through the town (including your humble host). In his zeal to sieze upon the Newtown tragedy and make a power grab against certain firearms, he tried foisting a bill on the town that could have affected anyone in the state of Massachusetts.

And let's recap, shall we? There are only a couple hundred thousand gun owners in Massachusetts to begin with. We have an "assault weapons" ban, where collapsible stocks, flash suppressors, and bayonet lugs are already illegal. We are limited to 10 round magazines unless those magazines are 20 years old or older. We have an "Approved Firearms Roster" for handguns. We have "may issue" licensing, whereby your constitutionally enumerated right to keep and bear arms is left to the whim of the local licensing authority, who can approve - or deny - your license for any reason whatsoever.

These measures are not sufficient?

No, Selectmen Jeffries, what you saw Wednesday night was pure democracy in action. Your poorly constructed, hastily enacted proposal was roundly rejected by the people of your town and the surrounding communities that would also be affected. Gun owners in Massachusetts are tired of being treated worse than criminals. The folks that would be affected by this bylaws are only the good, honest, law-abiding folks, not the criminals and insane that might misuse them. Your proposal was fatally flawed, and you didn't enjoy having those flaws put on display for the entire state to see.

You wanted your town to be the first to pass such a bylaw, in the hopes that other towns would follow suit. Thank you for that - because now, having seen the incredible wave of opposition, it's very unlikely that other towns will attempt such poorly thought out measures. We are watching, very carefully, for other crude assaults on what are left of our Second Amendment rights, and we will attend as many town meetings as we have to, in however many cities and towns as needed, to make sure our voices are heard and our rights remain intact.

Well, "intact" is a misnomer for the Second Amendment in Massachusetts - perhaps "stopped from further infringements" would be more correct.

That is all


Brad_in_MA said...


Thank you for posting and giving this issue an even wider audience. I have a bit of info to add to the already good news.

1) Bob Jeffries, the scumbag, statist, rights-infringing "public servant" is up for re-election in April, along with one other selectman. Two very pro-2a candidates have stepped forward to run for the seats.
2) A movement to remove Bob Jeffries from office by recall has also begun.

There's a follow-up meeting tonight @ 7.30pm at the Westford Sportmen's Club to plan further strategy. Of the selectmen who admitted in their meetings they didn't know much about firearms or fully understand what it meant to be a responsible firearms owner, there's a good chance the BoS members will be offered some free firearms instruction. I hope they accept the offer.

- Brad

Anonymous said...


Remind them that Westford provided a contingent of Minutemen to Concord

They should be embarrassed by that Hippie.


Bubblehead Les. said...

Yeah, but you know they'll just shift the battle to the State House.

That's why We, the People of Ohio, got "State Preemption" put in a few years ago. Should have seen the look on Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson's Face when the State Supreme Court Cleaned his Clock and said, "Yes, an Ohio CHP IS Legal in Cleveland and NO, you don't have the right to put up a Concealed Carry Ban, and all those people you Busted now have a Clean Record and you have to give them their Guns Back."

But you live in Mass, so it's not just a matter of IF but WHEN.

Anonymous said...

I heard that the ban / confiscation (90 day turn in) was all semi-autos, not just EBRs. A spokeswoman for GOAL was interviewed just before the meeting. My point being that once again, media obfuscates and outright lies.

Jason in MN said...

We're fighting the good fight here in MN, too. A couple weeks ago, there were three days of state house hearings on gun control. Roughly 2,000 pro-2A people showed up for the five sessions. Today and tomorrow, there are state senate gun control hearings. Again the state capitol has been packed with pro-2A folks. Local gun rights groups are coordinating efforts, with scores of people showing up whenever and wherever anti-rights politicians are hosting public events, and we have been overwhelming our legislators with phone calls, emails, letters, and office visits. The antis have resorted to busing inner-city school children to the legislative sessions and playing with hearing rules in an attempt to bolster the appearance of their numbers. It has been quite a process to watch, and very heartening to see the good guys out protecting their rights.

Ed said...

It is sad that so many levels of government from the Feds down to the cities and towns do not understand the fundamentals of what is written in the U.S. Constitution, or worse, choose to ignore them.