Massachusetts carry permit applications soar

AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

The state of Massachusetts will never be considered a pro-gun state. After all, they’ve got more gun control than many other states combined. What’s more, they’re proud of that gun control.

However, like many anti-gun states, the truth is always more complicated. After all, the urban centers favor gun control while the rural parts don’t. The entire state isn’t Boston, after all.

But it’s also still a very gun-controlled state.

It also has a soaring number of applications for gun permits.

Although Massachusetts has some of the strictest gun control laws in the country, residents in the Bay State seem more than willing to jump through the hoops to exercise their Second Amendment rights. It was announced last week that carry permits in Massachusetts have reached a four-year high.

According to the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security, 54,263 Massachusetts residents applied for a new License to Carry (LTC) permit in 2021, eclipsing 2020’s total of 54,082. The amount of new LTC applications in 2021 dwarfed the totals from 2018 and 2019, both of which were under 30,000.

Under state law, “residents 15 years and older who wish to possess, carry, and transport firearms, ammunition, and feeding devices are required to have a firearms license. Firearms licenses are issued by municipal police departments.”

“The demand is pretty high,” Jim Wallace, executive director of the Gun Owner’s Action League in Massachusetts, told Boston 25 News. “People, in general, are taking more responsibility for themselves. A lot of people have finally woken up and realized the police can’t always be there.” Wallace added that women are increasingly interested in purchasing firearms for self-defense.

This isn’t overly surprising. After all, we’ve been seeing this kind of thing all over the nation. That it’s happening in Massachusetts as well isn’t particularly shocking.

But it is telling.

What it tells us is that with more people exercising their Second Amendment rights, which means that there’s only so much more pushing states will be able to do with regard to guns. Massachusetts has had a pretty easy time passing gun control laws, but that may be about to change.

Sure, some of these people are still fairly anti-gun in a lot of ways, but gun ownership has a way of morphing into gun advocacy over a period of time. Many who were formerly supportive of gun control change after owning guns for a period of time.

It seems demonizing gun owners isn’t a great way to get them on your side. Nor is lying about how easy it is to get a gun lawfully when nothing could be further from the truth.

In the long run, I suspect we’ll start to see Massachusetts have a harder time pushing gun control down the throats of law-abiding citizens in the state. I’m not saying they won’t still get away with it, but it won’t be the cakewalk it used to be, and that’s a win for everyone, especially folks in Massachusetts.

It’s time to stop allowing our Second Amendment rights to be treated as second-class rights. One way to do that is put guns in more hands. That’s clearly happening in Massachusetts.