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Another Revolutionary Notion From Massachusetts

Well, the learned solons of Massachusetts have discovered a truly novel approach to fighting violent crime. And it's one that doesn't involve criminalizing ordinary citizens, depriving all of rights because of the abuses of a few, or offering compassion and understanding and sympathy to the victimizers.

No, it's far, far more radical than that:

They're actually enforcing laws that are already on the books.

Way back in 1998, the Massachusetts legislature passed an "armed career criminal" law. This called for big sentences for those who have a lengthy criminal record and are caught in possession of a gun (already illegal, as felons can't legally possess guns).

And it's actually WORKING.

Unlike banning everyone from owning guns, or saying people can't defend themselves, or new rounds of "prison reform," or a host of other stupid notions designed to "fight" violent crime, finding those who have shown a tendency towards committing violent crimes in illegal posession of weapons and locking them up away from innocent victims seems to do a good job of protecting the general public.

How absolutely remarkable.


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Comments (5)

One thing that has irked me... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

One thing that has irked me (okay, really pissed me off) over the years is the constant yammering about 'more gun control laws'. Yet the crook gets arrested with a weapon, goes to court, and his lawyer immediately offers a plea IF ALL WEAPONS CHARGES ARE DISMISSED. And the DA usually takes it IN THE FURTHERANCE OF JUSTICE.
Yeah, that'll work. Once arrested a local crook for SEVEN bank robberies where he used a weapon. He pled out, and even the judge remarked that he'd gotten a good deal, as the weapons charges would have ADDED another 14 years to his sentence.

I thought Massachusetts was... (Below threshold)
recoverd liberal democrat:

I thought Massachusetts was declared a "gun free zone" and there were no guns anywhere in the state. Even the police only carried night sticks or tazers. Humph, was I wrong?

When I lived in Richmond, V... (Below threshold)
Eric:

When I lived in Richmond, VA for years Richmond was in the top 5 murder capitals in the country. In the 1990's the US Attorney developed Project Exile, where he would vigorously apply existing gun laws to felons. Immediately after Project Exile started the murder rate in Richmond dropped like a rock.

A broken watch is correct ... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

A broken watch is correct twice a day. They elected Brown and now this. ww

Eric:Your Project ... (Below threshold)
kevino:

Eric:

Your Project Exile was based on similar work in Boston and NY City. Same results. The police got tired of arresting people and watching the state and local prosecutors release the bad guys with little or no punishment. So they made simple arrests for petty crimes or D/E felonies, found a felon with a firearm, and turned the case over the US Attorney's Office. The penalty for a felon having a gun is a ten year mandatory sentence. End of problem.

If you look at an open-air drug market in operation, most of the time, the actual deal is made by a little kid. The protection is provided by a well-armed team. It doesn't take much to get probable cause to search the members of the team. In many cases, they brandish their guns to scare people or adjust them as they stand for hours. With little effort you can undermine an organization, including taking out a gang's middle management. No one's rights get violated; no new laws are required; and the streets get a lot safer.




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