The exact language behind Article 34 is finally available. You can read it here, and I would encourage everyone to do so. To me, the most striking part of the text is the following (emphasis mine):
Any weapons or magazines deemed illegal… within the Town of Lexington shall be seized and destroyed by the police of the Town of Lexington
This chilling language and the images it evokes should be of grave concern to every American, regardless of where one stands on the issue of gun rights and gun control.
Make no mistake, this is a confiscation measure, and as such goes well beyond the federal “assault weapons” ban of 1994 as well as the as the ban currently in effect throughout the Commonwealth.
Again, we are not talking about employing such severe tactics against gang members or terrorists, but rather the most law-abiding of Massachusetts residents — the licensed gun owners who have successfully passed some of the strictest scrutiny in the United States as well as the discretion of the Chief of Police. This language should give even Article 34’s supporters cause for concern.
Remember that we are not talking about machine guns here, or automatic weapons, or indeed rapid-fire arms of any kind, nor are we talking about unusually high-powered firearms. This measure, once again, relies primarily on the presence of certain cosmetic or ergonomic features to define “assault weapons” (a certain kind of grip here, a certain kind of stock there.)
Why do these bans invariably resort to defining “assault weapon” based on such trivial, cosmetic features that have nothing to do with their lethality? The answer is simple — these guns are functionally unremarkable. It is only their appearance which distinguishes them from other perfectly commonplace firearms. And for that, we are considering turning out law-abiding friends and neighbors into criminals.
So remember those words, “seize and destroy.” Then remember who the target is — law-abiding gun owners. Then contact your town meeting members and selectmen, and show up at the town meeting so we can defeat this measure. We will publish a “date certain” for the relevant meeting as soon as we have it. Thank you for your support.