Vermont, despite its location in the Northeast, had a reputation as being one of the most pro-gun states in the country. They had no real gun control laws of their own to speak of. They followed federal laws, but other than that? Not much else.
However, that’s all over now.
Vermont governor Phil Scott signed a package of sweeping gun-control reforms into law Wednesday, in an unprecedented moment for the historically pro-Second Amendment state.
The three pieces of legislation, which raise the minimum age for gun purchases, ban high-capacity magazines, and streamline the gun-confiscation process, passed the state legislature in late March amid increased calls for gun control in the wake of the mass shooting in Parkland, Fla.
‘‘This is not the time to do what’s easy, it’s time to do what’s right,’’ Scott said on the statehouse steps Wednesday afternoon to a combination of cheers and boos from crowd.
Scott, a gun owner who vowed to oppose increased gun-control laws in 2016, softened his position after authorities prevented a Vermont high-school student from carrying out a mass shooting just days after the Parkland massacre.
Just one of the bills, however, is the jackpot for anti-gunners. It creates universal background checks for all sales, raises the age to purchase any gun to 21, bans bump stocks, and ban magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds.
In just that one bill, Vermont goes from pro-gun to anti-gun in one fell swoop.
I fully expect an assault weapon ban any day now.
Other legislation signed by Governor Scott included a bill making it easier to take guns from someone convicted of domestic violence and one that set up extreme violence protective orders. Both of these are somewhat less controversial, though they’re not universally beloved either.
Unfortunately, I fear we have a lot more of this to look forward to. First Florida, now Vermont. Raising the age to purchase a firearm to 21 is gaining momentum in places one would think would be resistant to such laws. But they’re not. Supposedly pro-gun governors are rolling over and showing their belly.
So what does that mean?
Not literal, mind you, but it means it’s time to start going after these lawmakers who so easily fold to public pressure when it comes to our rights. It’s time we start putting them in the unemployment line as a warning to others. We need to turn their careers into trophies we mount on our living room walls. “See that one? He supported universal background checks. Now he’s doing universal checks on produce at the local supermarket.”
The other side is counting on public support to hold out long enough for them to push their agenda through, but we can’t afford to give an inch anywhere.
A law in Vermont may not directly affect me in Georgia, but it’ll be justification for some anti-gunner to try and ram through similar legislation here. The same is true in every other state. We stand united or we fall separately.
That’s what’s happening now. The question is, are you ready to stop it?