Town Residents to Council: Our Guns Aren't Your Business

The residents of the town of Longmeadow, Massachusetts stood up against a local lawmaker and defeated three proposals for increased gun control bylaws, according to this story from masslive.com.

The measures were defeated by large majorities in a town meeting, during which more than 1,000 residents in attendance Tuesday debated the three citizen-led initiatives that would have imposed $300 fines for carrying guns in public buildings, possessing an “assault weapon,” and would have required gun owners to register their firearms with the police department.

Selectman Alex Grant introduced the measures, which he authored as a resident, the story says.

"This is not burdensome," Grant said of the proposed gun registration. "In Longmeadow, you have to register a dog every year, not every six years…this is not asking a lot."

The state of Massachusetts requires residents to have a Firearm Identification Card to purchase long guns or handguns, and is a “may issue” state when it comes to carry permits, falling under the discretion of local police departments. Open carry is permitted, but rarely practiced. The state also has a list of banned features on firearms that would classify them as an “assault weapon” and make them illegal, including a magazine capacity restriction of 10 rounds or fewer.

Opponents of the measure were handing out flyers outside the Longmeadow High School before the meeting, asserting that Longmeadow has "no gun crime" and warned that passing the articles would result in people from outside Longmeadow using the town as a pawn in the gun control argument, the story says.

"It's important to remember first and foremost that we don't have a firearm problem in Longmeadow," said resident Henry Lanouette in the story. "(The bylaws) penalize a law abiding portion of the town for a problem that doesn't exist."