To the Editor: I am writing in response to a front page article that was in the 3-4-07 The Sunday Enterprise. “Guns Are Us”, the strongest argument for taking away discretionary power from police chiefs was unwittingly made by Chief Crowley of Quincy. His policy requires that people applying for a hand gun license have, quote,”some reason more than self defense“. Say again?
Well, survival is mankind’s strongest instinct, and self defense is at the top of that instinct, Mr. Crowley. It is our first priority to our family and ourself. It is our governments first priority to its citizens. There can be no better reason for the honest citizen to obtain a license to carry than self defense! People that want to obtain their pistol permits are not the problem, a background check is all that is needed to verify that. They should not be treated with, in many cases, contempt, such as Crowley does. Politicians and police need to realize that these citizens are not the reason for crime, and treating them badly is not a solution to crime. Why do they pretend not to know this?
There will probably be police chiefs screaming that they need discretionary power over this issue, no, they do not. They need clear concise direction from the legislature. Arbitrary discretion does a disservice to the honest public. Not everyone may want to keep a firearm(s) for protection, but every American should support the Constitutional rights of all those who do, (including politicians and police chiefs) by not allowing discretionary “tactics” to strip away their right under the Second Amendment. There is a common thread that runs through arbitrary discretion, that thread being “absurdity“.
There needs to be set criteria in positive law, from Boston to Lenox and from Gloucester to Province town, without variation, so that anyone anywhere knows what is expected when applying for a carry permit. As it stands now it appears extremely arbitrary and archaic, simply because it is. The blame for this falls directly at the feet of a lazy legislature. Maybe the new Governor will show some leadership on this issue, (not a chance). This is where lawmakers have a bipartisan opportunity to demonstrate that they actually understood their oath to office, (that may be a stretch).
There should be no other reason for issue other than “Any Lawful Purpose”, that covers any/all reasons one might want a firearm. The Second Amendment is not about hunting, hunting is a ‘spinoff’, it is about your Constitutional right, your unalienable right to self defense. If you think this makes sense, call your state Representative at: 617-722-2000, ask them to represent you on this issue, to make this a ‘Shall’ issue state. That is their job, remind them they are there because you put them there to work in your best interest.
Mark Shean written 3-8-2007 www.mafirearmsafety.com