Firearm owners should avoid travel to Massachusetts and consider moving if they already live there, according to a gun rights organization concerned about a gun control bill making its way through the state legislature.
“If Massachusetts makes House Docket 4420 law, Massachusetts will become the most anti-gun state in the country,” Austin Hein, the director of political operations for the National Association for Gun Rights, told Fox News.
“What Massachusetts is clearly trying to do here is basically repeal the Second Amendment as we know it,” he added.
The 140-page omnibus bill, An Act of Modernizing Firearm Laws, makes sweeping changes to Massachusetts gun laws. This includes mandating that all firearms and feeding devices be registered, banning people under 21 from buying or carrying a semi-automatic shotgun or rifle, banning concealed carry of firearms on private property unless expressly permitted and much more.
‘LEAVE YOU DEFENSELESS’: GUN GROUP SPEAKS OUT AGAINST BLUE STATE FIREARM BILL
“This is real bad news for any gun owner that lives in Massachusetts,” Hein said. “Basically, pack your bags and leave because it’s untenable if this thing passes.”
The National Association for Gun Rights issued a travel advisory for anyone who lives in Massachusetts or is traveling to Massachusetts because of the bill last week.
The bill also cracks down on firearm-adjacent areas including banning targets with human silhouettes at ranges, banning people under the age of 18 from possessing mace or pepper spray and adding stun guns under the definition of firearms.
“So what this bill will actually do is prohibit a young high school girl from being able to defend herself with even mace,” Hein said.
“I think the states are trying to ban stun guns because I honestly think they just want to leave you defenseless,” he added.
Hein also slammed the requirement for gun owners to register their firearms and magazines.
“Registration leads to confiscation,” Hein said. “If you are putting yourself on a government list of what firearms you own and how many you own best be sure that the government is going to be knocking on your door one day.”
Hein added that he thinks a provision in the bill would create a stop and frisk-like policy to become law.
“The bill also goes so far as to allow law enforcement to demand that you show your permit without cause,” Hein said. “That’s basically a stop and frisk policy, which is another anti-gun policy.”
Hein called the section banning firing at human silhouettes at shooting clubs “silly.”
“What the state is saying now is that since you are shooting at a human silhouette, that’s basically violence of some sort,” he said. “So they want to ban those and leave the human silhouette targets to law enforcement only, which I mean, take that for what you will.”
The bill also hopes to address the Supreme Court’s New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen ruling last year that upheld the right to carry a weapon in public. The lawsuit was over a New York law which required those wishing to carry in public to prove they had a special need. Massachusetts previously had a similar law before the 2022 ruling.
“So what Massachusetts is trying to do is take what they already have, which is already an egregious anti-gun law, and double down on it and expand it way beyond any other state we’ve ever seen,” Hein said, adding that the legislation is “basically giving a middle finger” to the Bruen decision.
If it becomes law, Massachusetts gun owners would be prohibited from carrying weapons on private property unless the owner gives consent or posts a sign allowing it.
The bill also expands the Bay State’s “red flag law” by adding employers, school administrators, and various medical professionals to the list of people able to ask a judge to suspend the license of a firearm owner who may pose a risk to themselves or others.
The Democrat representative who introduced the bill and chairs the Joint Judiciary Committee, Rep. Michael Day was tasked by the Massachusetts House Speaker Ronald J. Mariano with developing the legislation over the past year.
“While the Commonwealth’s gun laws are among the best in the nation, unrelenting acts of violence and the Supreme Court’s deleterious Bruen decision demand legislative action both here in Massachusetts and on the Federal level,” Speaker Mariano said on the day the legislation was unveiled, according to WWLP.
Mariano added that he hopes their work in Massachusetts will serve as a national model for Congress and other states.
Day also took aim at the Supreme Court, claiming “neither a rogue Supreme Court nor increasingly sophisticated criminal activity” would stop lawmakers from ensuring the “health and safety” of residents, in a statement according to the Boston Globe.
The bill also hopes to address “ghost guns” by requiring receivers and barrels—the parts necessary to build a gun—to be registered and have a serial number. The Boston Police Department reported a 280 percent increase in ghost gun recoveries from 2019 to 2021, according to Day’s office.
“It will do nothing to curb illegal firearm manufacturing,” Hein said. “Anyone with access to the internet and a 3D Printer can print a lower receiver in just a few hours.”
“The left is more rabid than ever when it comes to trying to ban guns, and they’re doing so as an open defiance to the Supreme Court,” Hein said. ” They’re trying to challenge the legitimacy of the Supreme Court and the Constitution itself.”
“Laws like this will only leave vulnerable people more vulnerable,” Hein said. “HD 4420 is the most anti-gun bill I have ever seen in my career as a gun rights lobbyist, and it needs to be defeated,” Hein added.
Day did not respond to a request for comment.
Click here to hear more from the National Association for Gun Rights about the proposed gun control bill.
Isabelle McDonnell contributed to the accompanying video.