By Mark Shean, author of GUN SENSE on Amazon

Dear Rep. Dwyer, This is a copy of a certified letter I sent years ago to the State House, to my elected ‘Representative’, with no response. Can I ask that you now represent this ongoing concern?

   State House, Boston: Dear Mr. DeMacedo; Hello, I will try to be as concise as possible concerning the problem herein. I am a basic firearms instructor registered with the state. As such, I have had the opportunity to hear many varied true stories that concern many an honest citizens quest to gain his or her license to carry concealed in this state. I will relay to you the following examples that highlight a few of the road blocks that are being reported to me from people that have taken my safety class, as well as others who have contacted me.

   These examples are not all inclusive.
1. Some are told they need to prove that they have cause to fear for their safety before they will even be given an application, and to write a ‘reason’ letter to the chief outlining their specific concern. For ‘self defense’ is specific enough in my view, that would be my total ‘letter’.
2. There are those told they must first prove they are members of a gun club before they may apply for any permit for firearms. Why?
3. There are restrictions such as, ‘for target and hunting only’ imposed on people that want a carry permit for personal protection ,with no good reason given why they can not have it for ‘any lawful purpose’. 
4. There are towns that will not issue carry permits to anyone, including retired police officers.
5. There are towns that tell people they will not issue a class ‘A’ permit to anyone who has not had one before, instead they will issue a class ‘B’ permit for target and hunting only, but, they say, if in six months you have not been in trouble with the law you may come back for reconsideration for the class ‘A’ permit, of course this will cost you another$100, (never mind that these people havenever been in trouble with the law in their lives), is this a scam to fleece people twice by the state? I hope this is not done by design as a ‘back door tax’ to raise additional money for the state? This practice should be investigated and stopped, and those involved prosecuted. Do you agree?
6. One town will not give out class ‘A’ permits because the chief claims that two people in the past had firearm related accidents so he no longer gives them out, (how capricious) this is blanket paranoia. Under this police chiefs ‘theory’, it should follow that because there have been car accidents in the past no one should be given a drivers license I suppose?
7. There are towns that want an applicant to have a physical exam and a mental evaluation to make sure they are physically and mentally able to handle a gun. Does this mean that someone with a physical handicap need not apply? That sir is discrimination.  
 8.  Many, but not all of these towns, require any number of letters of reference concerning the applicants character, when in reality the police need only to punch in a persons SS# , as they do at a traffic stop, to know more about a person than anyone writing a letter of reference could possibly know about someones legal background.
9. Some Police Chiefs want you first to be a survivor of a criminal attack before they will ‘deem’ you worthy of a carry permit. Is it just me or does this sound insane to you also?
    Hoops? You bet they are! These ‘hoops’ to jump through are simply used as tools of harassment, designed to dissuade people from applying for gun permits. I could cite many more examples, but I wanted to point out a few of the obstacles that honest law abiding citizens are made to endure, (for no good reason) in order to pursue their right to self defense in Massachusetts. There are towns that use multiples of these ‘hoops’ listed, and others not listed here.
   There is a common thread that runs through all of the afore mentioned examples, that thread being “ABSURDITY”.  There are towns that only do a background check, (and rightly so) that is all that should be required. This sould be a ‘Shall’ issue state, it would end this foolishness and abuse of good people. {NOTE; to be continued on pages two and three……..}
Continued from page one:
   If discretion is the common denominator being exercised by each town and city, then it is far from consistent, and on a broad scale, being used irresponsibly by many in positions of authority. There needs to be simple criteria, set in positive law, from Boston to Lenox and from Gloucester to Province town, without variation, so that anyone anywhere knows what to expect when applying for any gun permit. As it stands now it appears extremely arbitrary, simply because it is.
   The blame for this falls directly at the feet of you in the legislature, and I am asking you as a legislator, and a ‘Representative’, to propose the bill that will correct the problem. I do not believe anyone should point out a problem without offering what could be a viable solution or solutions to a problem. As with an FID, (firearms identification card) there should be set reasons to deny:
1. Having been convicted of a felony within the last five years.
2. Having a record of drug or habitual drunkenness within the last five years.
3. Having been confined to any hospital or institution for mental illness unless he/she has an affidavit from a physician stating that he/she is not disabled in a manner which should prevent his/her possessing a handgun rifle or shotgun.
4. If there is a current 209-A restraining order in effect, that gun ownership be reinstated after it is vacated or expires. As it stands now, it is often used as a tool of harassment. A  209-A ‘order’ is a violation of your rights under the Fourteenth Amendment and its Due Process clause!  
5. There should be a rapid appeal process should a ‘rogue’ town invent its own ‘law'(s) outside of set law.
6. There should be considered an exemption to the age requirement of ’21′ for anyone serving in the armed forces for a pistol permit. These responsible young men and women put their lives on the line daily so that we may enjoy our freedoms, yet they are not shown the courtesy of obtaining a pistol permit in Massachusetts. No veteran, past or present, should need to pay for any firearms permit, they have already paid through their service to our country.
   I would be very surprised if there was not broad bipartisan support for this exemption. There should not be restrictions such as ‘target and hunting only’, “any or all lawful purposes” covers target and hunting if one wishes to do so, and does not infringe on ones right to self defense, as ‘target and hunting only’ does. People have a right to personal protection, and there is no provision in the Constitution for government to arbitrarily place restrictions on that right. This is where law makers have a bipartisan opportunity to demonstrate that they actually understood their oath to office.
Continued from page 2:
   People that want to obtain their pistol permits are not the problem, a simple background check is all that is needed to verify that. They need not be treated with, in many cases, contempt. Politicians and the police need to understand that these citizens are not the reason for crime, and treating them badly is not a solution to crime, and never will be.
   There has never been a criminal, that on the threshold of perpetrating a crime, paused and said,”gee, I think I should obtain a pistol permit first”. There will be police chiefs screaming that they need arbitrary discretion over this issue, no, they do not. They need clear, concise direction from you in the legislature. Arbitrary discretion does a disservice to the public. Not everyone may want to keep a firearm(s) for self defense, but every American should support and honor the constitutional rights of all those who do, including you, by not allowing discretionary tactics/schemes/high fees, to strip away that right, EVER.
    I am not a lobbyist, so I am unable to shovel loads of money at you. I am only an individual highlighting a real problem that exists, a problem that is effecting only the honest people of the state. I am asking as a constituent/citizen, for representation that would give relief to all law abiding citizens/constituents in Massachusetts.
   I thank you in advance for taking the time needed from your very busy schedules to consider this outlined problem/proposal. Please, if you have any questions I would be honored to lend any assistance I can.
cc: Rep. T.J. O’BRIEN (D) 12Th Plymouth District. Sincerely, Mark Shean-
[NOTE; REP. Dwyer, I wrote this and sent it certified mail and received the return receipts. When shown a chance to make a positive impact that would effect good people statewide what I receive instead is no response, none what so ever, from either DeMacedo or O’Brien. But when there is a chance to levy a new tax or scheme up a new fee, politicians are johnny- on- the- spot for any opportunity to lighten our wallets. Do not direct me to GOAL, they are not my elected representatives and are not charged with the public trust.
Please support H.1567 An Act Relative to the Right to Carry Firearms
   As THOMAS JEFFERSON once said,{“What country can preserve its liberties if its rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance?”}
Mark Shean, originally submitted 3-9-2006
 Resubmitted on 10-7-2011…….
People are invited to add their own stories to this list of abuses of authority, made possible by your ‘representitives’.
UPDATE: This was sent to the following ‘representitives’ on 10-7-2011:
As of this date, 9-15-2019, (and counting) after I sent this to each of these ‘representative’s’ not even one of them have had the courage to respond. If you are in a district that is ‘represented’ by one of these cowards, that’s too bad. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but they are not involved in politics for you.
Mark Shean
Author of : GUN SENSE

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