Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey said Wednesday she was cracking down on the sale of guns that, she said, were designed to skirt a state law banning assault weapons.
Healey said she had put gunmakers and sellers on notice that they were not allowed to sell the guns, which she said were intentionally designed to circumvent the ban by incorporating “small tweaks that do nothing to limit the deadliness of the weapon.”
The attorney general said at a morning news conference that the law remained the same, but her office would change the way it enforced it.
While manufacturers have deemed certain weapons in compliance with state law, she said, her office had looked at the issue and concluded that they weren’t.
“The gun industry does not get to decide what’s compliant,” she said during the event, where she was flanked by law enforcement officials, community leaders and anti-violence activists. “We do.”
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Healey spoke after penning an opinion piece in Wednesday’s Boston Globe, in which she said the gun industry was taking advantage of a legal “loophole of potentially horrific proportions.”
She said her office had begun looking at the law in the wake of the deadly Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, where a gunman killed 49 people.
Healey said the recent killing of police in Baton Rouge and Dallas, along with the fatal shootings of black men at the hands of police, have only added to the urgency.
She described her action as “a step” toward reducing gun violence.
“It is not a total panacea, I recognize that, but it is a step,” Healey said.
She said her office had notified dealers in the state that they cannot sell guns whose “operating system is essentially the same as a banned weapon.”
Operating system. Got that? That means semi-automatic weapons of all kinds. She doesn’t mean DI systems as designed by Eugene Stoner for the AR-15. All semi-automatic weapons can discharge one round for every pull of the trigger.
Ms. Healey has declared herself the only sovereign potentate who gets to adjudicate on everything and anything she wishes. She’s queen. And gun owners should willingly bypass, smuggle, and disobey this edict however and whenever they can.