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WRTC Position on the Westford Assault Weapons Bylaw

The assault weapons bylaw is nothing more than political grandstanding

The Board of Selectmen have proposed a bylaw that would prohibit Westford residents from owning certain classes of firearms that are legal under state and federal laws. We believe this action is constitutionally and historically reserved for state and federal governments.  This proposal exceeds the authority of the Board of Selectmen and challenges both the United States and State Constitution. Because of this, it subjects the town to serious legal and financial liabilities.

If passed, this bylaw would create a class of individuals (to include residents and visitors who happen to cross out town line) who are law abiding under state and federal law, yet criminals in Westford. If the police were to take action under this bylaw, they could be committing a civil rights violation.

This bylaw is nothing more than political grandstanding, which offers the citizens a false sense of security and our town leaders a false sense of accomplishment. It fails to provide a solution to address the many serious issues relating to the prevention of violence in our society. For these reasons, the Westford Republican Town Committee opposes this bylaw.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Iron Mike February 17, 2013 at 03:54 PM
@ Mary G Mary, you are being just a tad naïve if you think law-abiding gun owners in Westford - or anywhere - are going to voluntarily give up their guns. You clearly don't understand what it means to be an American! True, - if such an ordinance were passed – some old ladies would go to their closets and turn in the guns their dead husbands had left them for self-defense. Then they would be inviting targets for predators. Mostly we law-abiding folks have to hope that our police officers will honor their oath – taken to 'uphold, defend, and protect the Constitution of the United States' – and that they would refuse to enforce any and all unconstitutional local laws. The actions of a few Westford selectmen are ill-informed, ill-advised, illegal, - and a shameful distraction from real issues facing any town. Frankly these anti-American individuals should resign, should be shunned, and should be turned out of office. They are a disgrace. Remember the words of Ben Franklin: They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Iron Mike February 17, 2013 at 04:08 PM
@ Steven Sadowski Steve, there are a lot of wussy and fake Republicans out there,...just as most of today's 'Democrats' are really World Socialists..... The issue of our God-given right to self defense – enshrined in our founding documents and specified in our 2nd Amendment is what separates Americans from all other peoples on Earth. It made us a free people. Being essentially defensless, King George was able to quarter his troops in our homes. Thus we have the 3rd Amendment, - with the 2nd to back it up. Today King Obama would squash our free speech, - is telling churches what they must do, and is signed an 'Executive Order' which will enable him to listen to your phone calls and monitor your keystrokes – without a warrant. Now there will be armed drones overhead. Our God-given right to BEAR ARMS is not about any political party, - although one certain party ~ seems ~ to have made it their business to do away with. Knowing the history of arms registration and arms confiscation throughout the 20th Century – we really have to question their motives. I don't think it has anything to do with 'protecting school kids'.
Vincent DiRico February 17, 2013 at 05:12 PM
Howdy Steve, I do agree with the knocks on some Rs BUT turning this into something more than local/BOS is a bit of a roll of the dice (the applause is good, the knocks are not needed, they will pee some off and you are after every local vote right now).
Raoul Duke February 17, 2013 at 05:16 PM
Mike, I agree with your views above. People seem to be forgetting why we have these basic rights. As the government continues to dole out more and more, creating a Orwellian nanny state, our "citizens" are becoming subjects, indebted to the very government that should be protecting our rights. The government wants us to become reliant on them for everything. However, it is self-reliance and independence that this country was created and thrived upon. To piggyback off your Ben Franklin quote, as he was walking out of the very last session of the Constitutional Convention in 1787, a woman asked him if we had ultimately chosen a republic or a monarchy. His response, "A Republic, if you can keep it.”
Steven Sadowski February 17, 2013 at 05:52 PM
Vincent: I'm not trying to alienate anyone, but the GOP does not have a monopoly on advocating for our rights and freedoms. On this issue, I gave credit where credit is due. I applaud the WRTC, but I feel the GOP cherry picks issues to get upset about while championing other issues that strip our civil liberties. That's all. If one compares the GOP Platform with the Libertarian platform, one has to read through paragraphs regarding the GOP telling you and me (grown adults) who we can marry and not marry before even reading a word about the 2nd Amendment. In the Libertarian platform, the 2nd Amendment is in the 1st section after paragraphs entrusting you and me with our own decisions. If one is honest, and not a Kool Aid drinker, one can see the flaws in their party and their argument (the Libertarians have their issues too!). Skepticism is healthy and introspection makes one stronger. Mr Jefferies lacks these qualities, hence his ideological entrenchment and condescending argument.
Vincent DiRico February 17, 2013 at 06:25 PM
Which is larger? - the pool of GOPers or Libertarians, they are your feet, keep blasting if you can afford the votes, if not, ...
Iron Mike February 17, 2013 at 06:32 PM
REAL patriotism knows no particular party. But beware of FALSE patriots – who want to undermine your freedoms, dilute our Constitution, grab your guns, and subordinate our sovereignty to the UN. THEY are NOT patriots – they are naïve fools at best, - more likely committed stealthy traitors.
R Gagnon February 17, 2013 at 07:28 PM
"...they'll have no trouble rounding up guns from law abiding citizens." I strongly dissagree with that. Even the law abiding citizen knows when government has gone too far and many will resist gun confiscation. I would hope the biggest obstacle would be the police officers honoring their oath to uphold the Constitution. When that fails, those who refuse to uphold the oath deserve what they get.
R Gagnon February 17, 2013 at 07:43 PM
I saw the video of the BoS meeting where V. Wormell said "We don't know what we are talking about". Many people across the country have seen it too. Maybe I missed it but I have yet to see anybody on the BoS, including V. Wormell, take a firm stand and use the US Constitution to argue that this Article 30 is the wrong thing to do and is a violation of the 2nd amendment. The only resistance I have heard from the BoS is limp wristed and watered down mild objection. I would like to hear just one of them, any one of them, take a firm stand, no compromise, and refuse to support it. I want to see a BoS member actively work against this even if it means relinquishing the seat on the Board. Any member who would do that, would have my vote for re-election should he/she decide to run again. Until that happens, I say every one of the current BoS members be voted off the board, including Wormell, on their next election cycle. We have to set an example for all other boards and mayors from all other towns and cities across the country.
R Gagnon February 17, 2013 at 07:51 PM
Iron Mike, absolutely true. Republicans are nothing more than democrats with the same objective but different methods. All career politicians are in it for themselves while lying about working for the people. Just as in the private sector, if you want to preserve your job, you have to grow the company. If a politician wants to keep his job, he has to grow the government.
Sam February 17, 2013 at 07:59 PM
Or their voting base, like the Dream Act
Mike February 17, 2013 at 10:47 PM
Wait... It's hypocritical to lay the national financial crisis at the feet of Republicans without acknowledging that part of the problem was the exact type of deregulation championed by Libertarians. The Libertarian platform -- "We favor free-market banking, with unrestricted competition among banks and depository institutions of all types" is the same kind of ticking timebomb we just avoided. And regarding TARP...despite Ron Paul's blather on the issue, it turned out to be one of Bush's few economic successes, with a 97 percent payback in four years -- and no collapse of the international banking system. If you hold the radical Libertarian view that the system needed to be brought down to be rebuilt in some free-market utopia, causing decades of misery for billions of people, then that's just nuts.
Raoul Duke February 17, 2013 at 10:59 PM
Confiscation is one step away from absolute power and it endangers my life, liberty, and property.
Steven Sadowski February 17, 2013 at 11:03 PM
Mike: 1st, the economic collapse of '07 happened precisely because of crony capitalism and government interference of the free market. So you are actually making the Libertarian point. Thank you Mike! The "deregulation" was not true deregulation but cherry picked winners and losers that the government deemed worthy of restriction and too inept to even keep up with: derivatives. Furthermore, the inference with the housing market vis a vis the Housing Affordability Act caused a bubble---a Keynesian bubble---which everyone jumped up and down about when the market was hot, but Austrian/Libertarian economists like Peter Schiff were predicting would crash! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z0YTY5TWtmU As for TARP, banks can go through a managed bankruptcy which would've had the same effect as the bailout and saved the billions spent, which went to overseas accounts, bonus' for CEO's and most damningly, intertwined the govt. with the financial banking system. The fact is that the republicans love to spend money too despite their rhetoric, so trying to defend republicans for their deficit hawkishness is a fool's argument, but go right ahead, this is how more people become libertarians.
Iron Mike February 17, 2013 at 11:32 PM
Gents, if you want to debate the housing collapse engineered by Bill Clinton's AG Janet Reno and her assistant Eric Holder – who FORCED banks to make bad loans to credit UN-worthy families,...write a different LTE. Here we should be discussing and debating the misguided and unconstitutional actions of a few agenda-driven Westford selectmen who don't understand American History, American uniqueness, or our Constitution....
Hugh MacDonald February 18, 2013 at 12:05 AM
The evidence that gun control doesn't work just keeps rolling in, this is from today's Globe: http://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2013/02/17/the-nation-toughest-gun-control-law-made-massachusetts-less-safe/3845k7xHzkwTrBWy4KpkEM/story.html?p1=Well_BG_Links
Steven Sadowski February 18, 2013 at 12:40 AM
Iron Mike: You don't find it somewhat ironic that while adamantly advocating for discussion on the 2nd Amendment, you are attempting to restrict my 1st Amendment? Second, most people I know, know how to compartmentalize a conversation that grows, has tangents, expands, has expositions, development and circles back for validation. You should be proud that your initiation has spawned so much free debate and repartee. Life is too short for myopia. Last, the housing bubble was half of the equation for why the collapse happened. The other half was the ad hoc deregulation. Republicans love to cite the housing bubble, and democrats love to cite the deregulation and neither have the complete story, which is why no matter who is in power, America continues to become insolvent. A 3rd party is needed for real change.
Iron Mike February 18, 2013 at 02:04 AM
@ Steven Sadowski No one Steve, - least of all me – is trying to stifle you free speech. Expand and roam all you want – knowing you risk diluting the focus from the problems at hand – which are Messrs Ross, Jefferies, Sullivan and Mmes Peraner-Sweet and Wormell. These five [misguided][conniving] individuals have violated their oath of office and hijacked the process of Town Government in Westford. They need to be dealt with – and quickly. Bad ideas have a remarkable way of spreading. Just look at the Federal Reserve, the New Deal, the Great Society, Barrack Obama, Agenda 21, and the bailouts...all bad ideas which spread because they were miss-packaged in false advertising. Going back even further in our history – remember that the institution of Black slavery began as a shear accident.... Look at how many lives that cost us over 400 years... Your choice: – ramble on in tangents, – or stick to the 5 problems that Westford CAN quickly deal with.
Steven Sadowski February 18, 2013 at 02:14 AM
IM: I have faith in my fellow citizens to express their free choice and use their mouse to scroll past my post if they find it a distraction. This is not the 1st article to be posted on this issue. If you know me, you know me to be a staunch believer in the 2nd Amendment. So much so that I don't just post on the Patch, but I'm one of the candidates for Selectmen. Only three out of five that are opposed to the bylaw. So you have a three in five shot at replacing Sweet/Jefferies this time. I'd be happy if any one of us (Hazelton/Jarvis/me) got in over those two. All three of us value your/our 2nd Amendment rights. Unfortunately, the election will be on the 30th of April so every democrat and their uncle will be out to vote for Markey, so...
Iron Mike February 18, 2013 at 03:39 AM
Yeah, Markey v Lynch,...aka Dumb and Dumber....
Steven Sadowski February 18, 2013 at 03:42 AM
You mean, Sen. Dumb or Sen. Dumber, right? We salute the rank, not the man.
Iron Mike February 18, 2013 at 03:46 AM
They're not 'Senator' yet.... I'm collecting sigs for Sullivan... Can't awit to watch the Markey v Lynch debates - where they'll bicker about how much taxpayer $$$ they should be handing out to illegals and layabouts....
Steven Sadowski February 18, 2013 at 03:49 AM
Sullivan? He's not up for re-election. Isn't it Jefferies & Sweet?
Andrew Sylvia (Editor) February 18, 2013 at 04:01 AM
I think Iron Mike is talking about former U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan for the U.S. Senate Special Election, not Selectman Jim Sullivan.
Iron Mike February 18, 2013 at 04:20 AM
Michael J. Sullivan - former US Arttorney for Mass - Republican candidate for the US Senate.
R Gagnon February 18, 2013 at 12:55 PM
"We salute the rank, not the man." True. Yet our country's "American Idol" mentality has lost sight of that and swoons over a president who disprespects and disregards the Constitution he has sworn to uphold.
Mike February 18, 2013 at 01:28 PM
Steven, that was a masterful dodge, albeit one completely divorced from reality. You have a great future in town politics.
Steven Sadowski February 18, 2013 at 01:43 PM
Mike: How is that a "dodge?" Stating something doesn't make it so. The collapse was the cause of 2 main factors: the toxicity of derivatives trading, and the housing bubble. That is the conclusion of every non-biased commission assigned to cover it. Both causes were the result of the government either actively advocating for a result (mortgages), or complicity (ad hoc deregulation and currency manipulation) allowing the result to occur because it was causing a tech bubble in the 90's. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfWLm25Le7w
Gerard February 20, 2013 at 02:41 AM
This discussion would have a lot more credibility and probably encourage more participation if the people that are dominating it could refrain from the name-calling and bullying. State your point, agree to agree or disagree and leave room for a healthy discussion.
Andrew Sylvia (Editor) February 20, 2013 at 03:30 AM
Thank you, Gerard. Folks, whether you agree or disagree with others here, please try to remain civil.

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