Based on the surge in sales, “Americans” think gun-stores are essential. Here in New Hampshire, that status was made clear from the top as it was in other states. But our ‘sovereign’ neighbor to the south has had a change of heart.
Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker (R.) reversed course and shut down gun dealers in the state on Wednesday after previously labeling them “essential.”
The reversal effectively shuts down gun sales in Massachusetts as the governor attempts to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Baker’s declaration came days after the federal government declared the gun industry “essential.” Other jurisdictions have backed away from mandatory closures following the federal revision. Second Amendment activists are now exploring legal action to challenge the policy.
Gun and ammunition makers have not been ordered to cease operations just physical points of purchase. The places that will do the background check before you can take your new ‘purchase’ in hand. Gun Rights advocates are not happy, especially after recent wins in nearby states.
“This antipathy for the respect of the right of Massachusetts citizens to protect themselves is alarming,” NSSF general counsel Lawrence G. Keane said in a statement. “Every other governor in New England is permitting their citizens the right to acquire a firearm. Even the governors of New Jersey and Pennsylvania have now recognized the limits of their authority to infringe on fundamental American rights and reversed course.”
The Constitutional argument, while relevant, has not been compelling in many of these locales, where restrictions on ownership are burdensome. More hoops and costly licensing. Then there are carry and storage requirements passed into law to make it more work to exercise your right to self-defense than many are willing to endure.
But if New Jersey has seen the light, who turned it off in the Bay State?
Governor Baker is registered as a Republican, but he is the classic Northeastern species. That is to say, he is a Democrat with an (R) after his name. A moderate leftist for whom the other party would provide no quarter; there is very little room for moderates on the left side of the aisle. Opposing live-birth or third-trimester abortion in these parts, for example, will get you primaried by the Democrats. The point being that Baker is no defender of the Bill of Rights. Even the tiniest political push from the majority in this deep blue state is enough to drive policy changes.
And so it has.