Massachusetts hasn’t been the “cradle of liberty” for quite some time, but the lengths that some of its anti-gun residents will go to virtue signal their opposition to the right to keep and bear arms still manages to surprise me on occasion.
In the coastal Cape Cod town of Falmouth, for instance, some folks are currently pitching a fit over a deal that allows the local police department to sell used AR-15s to a local gun shop in exchange for a discount on the purchase of new patrol rifles. What’s the issue? Well, they want to see the guns destroyed rather than risk them ending up in the “wrong hands.”
The deal entails the police department buying 38 semi-automatic weapons from Powderhorn Outfitters, and trading in 21 semi-automatic weapons, 20 of which are AR-15s, to receive credit toward the purchase.
Over 300 Falmouth residents signed a petition for the town to dismantle and destroy the police department’s surplus weapons rather than trade them in, said the Rev. Deborah Warner, who created the petition.
Town Counsel Maura O’Keefe advised the Select Board at a June 6 meeting that the contract, which was signed by the town manager, is legally binding.
The deal was approved by Acting Town Manager Peter Johnson-Staub after Powderhorn Outfitters agreed to only sell the weapons to local law enforcement, he said.
However, Richard Duby, president of the Falmouth Gun Safety Coalition, said despite assurances that only local law enforcement will handle these weapons, they still pose a public risk.
“Unless people are under the delusional belief that these officers are going to keep these weapons for the rest of their lives, they will end up in the public sector,” he said.
That’s right. The guns in question aren’t even going to be made available for sale to the general public. Instead, their purchase is restricted only to other law enforcement agencies, but that’s still not good enough for the gun grabbers because they might one day potentially be purchased by someone who doesn’t wear a badge.
Duby, as well as Warner, said local law enforcement officials could purchase the guns legally. They could then re-sell them to people in states where AR-15s are legal, or to a gun dealer who would then sell them out of state. That scenario could potentially put them in the hands of someone dangerous.
They could also be stolen from the back of a patrol car, an officer’s home, or a gun store for that matter. Of course, that also applies to handguns, shotguns, and every other legally-owned firearm on Cape Cod.
These anti-gun activists aren’t really worried about these guns falling into the hands of someone dangerous. What’s really got them so steamed is the fact that AR-15s even exist, and spurred on by the horrific murders of 19 fourth graders in Uvalde, Texas, they decided to “do something”; something completely ineffective, mind you, but something that makes them feel good about themselves.
Warner said the news about the deal between the Police Department and Powderhorn Outfitters became public around the time of a shooting in Uvalde, Texas which claimed the lives of 19 children and two teachers at the hands of a man with an AR-15 style assault rifle.
The shooting in Texas prompted Warner to act.
“We can’t stand back, everybody has to stand up and make their voices heard, especially around assault rifles,” said Warner.
With Warner and other activists unable to stop the current deal from going forward, they’re now aiming at striking a new deal that would allow the town to buy back the guns that were just sold to the gun shop for the sole purpose of destroying them; wasting not only perfectly good firearms but taxpayer dollars as well.
Personally, I don’t think these folks should settle for half-measures like that. If they’re truly so concerned about AR-15s, then they should demand the town of Falmouth simply ban their use by local police to fully ensure that they don’t fall into the hands of some thief or violent criminal. Actually, given that handguns are used by criminals far more frequently than rifles of any kind, they shouldn’t stop by making semi-automatic rifles off-limits to law enforcement. Imagine the virtue that could be signaled if they were to disarm the Falmouth Police Department entirely!
I’m forever grateful to my mom and dad for leaving Massachusetts when I was a toddler and moving our family to Oklahoma. It was my father’s career and not Massachusetts’ politics that led to the move, but it’s definitely the seemingly omnipresent anti-gun ideology that’s kept the state off my short list of places I’m willing to relocate to if my family ever leaves our current home in Virginia. I love the state’s history, but I can’t help but despise so much of what it’s become.