Should Massachusetts Loosen Gun Control Laws?
A Massachusetts gun owners group is lobbying for passage of a bill that would confer lifetime gun licenses.
Way too much red tape.
That's the complaint of the Gun Owners’ Action League of Massachusetts, a group that is urging passage of a law that would abolish the requirement of having to renew a gun permit every six years, according to the Boston Herald.
For comparison, Massachusetts vehicle drivers' licenses need to be renewed every five years.
But the league says local police cannot keep up with timely gun permit renewals, and legitimate gunowners go license-less until the cops get time to do the paperwork.
The law now allows 40 days for turning around license applications.
In Boston, almost 1,000 people have applied for gun permits so far this year, with waits running about 10 weeks, the Herald quotes police spokeswoman Cheryl Fiandaca as saying.
The gun owners group is lobbying for a return to lifetime licenses; that a license gets pulled only if laws are broken, according to the Herald story.
The six-year gun permitting is part of a law passed in 1998 that resulted in Massachusetts having among the strictest gun control laws in the U.S.
According to a gun control lobbying group, the Violence Policy Center, Massachusetts also has the lowest gun death rate in the nation.
But still, the law requires a 40-day turnaround. So what do you think is the right course of action: return to the days of life-long gun licenses and make life easier for both harried cops and law-abiding gunowners? Lengthen the license turnaround time and not hold the gunowner accountable if s/he uses the gun during that turnaround time? Keep the pressure on and keep things as they are, to stifle the easy use of guns? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.