Chief of Police Requires “Essay” to Obtain CCW

By Dave Dolbee published on in General, News

As gun owners and supporters of the Second Amendment we are used to lawmakers and public officials coming up with new ways to subvert the law and enact defacto gun control. That being said, the Chief of Police of Lowell, Massachusetts, has set the bar to a new low.

Massachusetts’ law mandates that it is an, “unrestricted right-to-carry” gun permit state. However, the police chief still has to issue the permit. In this case, the chief of the Lowell, Massachusetts Police Department has mandated that the residents of Lowell submit a written essay to the chief of police that explains just why they want that particular right. To actually receive the permit, the applicant must receive a passing grade.

Man in light blue shirt and white ball cap teaches two young ladies how to handle a gun, with a wooded area in the background

The whole “shall not be infringed argument” is self-explanatory and needs no further explanation here, but how can anyone even conceive an essay requirement as a fair judge of whether to issue an “unrestricted right-to-carry” gun permit? I have read more than one report from police officers… based on their writing skills, more than a few would not have qualified to carry a firearm. However, that is not to say they were not good coppers. There is a lot that goes in to writing a report or an essay, including time, sleep, stressors, and education to name a few, but none of those have anything to do with the restriction of a Constitutional right.

English, writing skills, grammar, they are all subjective to the interpretation of the reader. Even the SAT, the standard requirement to enter most four-year universities, requires multiple readers to grade an essay, but not in Lowell. In Lowell, the Chief merely makes up a rule and assigns a reader. In fairness, the Chief did not make the rule, he merely brought it up to the city council who approved it, but you get the idea.

Adding insult to injury, in addition to the essay requirement, the residents of Lowell are also required to pay up to $1,100 for firearms training in order to obtain their permit.

The Local Perspective

Once the story broke, The Shooter’s Log immediately went to Mike Pelonzi, President of Magnum Anti Ballistic Systems Corporation. Beyond making some of the most innovative ballistic panels (Check back in the next couple of weeks for a story on Pelonzi’s ballistic solutions), Pelonzi is also a certified firearms training instructor in Massachusetts, which him an ideal candidate for a local perspective.

Pelonzi said, to be certified as a firearms instructor, you have to submit all of your training certificates and a written lesson plan to the Colonel of the MA State Police. Once approved, you are certified to teach the course. Students seeking a CCW who successfully pass that course are and issued a MA certificate, which is supposed to be—and was until now—accepted through all police departments in the state.

Magnum Anti Ballistic Systems Corporation
Danvers MA 01923
Mike Pelonzi, President
978.815.6989
mike@magnumantiballisticsystems.com
www.Mabs777.com 

However, Lowell, MA, Police Chief William Taylor’s new plan calls for additional requirements such as the essay and fees up to $1,100. Although the details are a bit vague as the department’s website has not yet been updated, it is rumored that the increase in fees is due to the Chief’s requirement that citizens be required to take a class taught by the police department instead of private instructors. Pelonzi noted that the average firearms safety class costs between $75 and $125, plus $100 for the license application fee.

Pelonzi concluded the interview by noting, criminals do not take firearm safety classes. We already have a system that requires training and an application that goes through a full NICS background check. Lowell’s new requirements add a burden to the law-abiding citizens and potentially denies them of their Constitutional rights, but does nothing to deter crime.

Jim Wallace with the Gun Owners Action League of Massachusetts released this statement: “It is absurd that people should have to write an essay to the town to explain why they should be able to exercise their constitutional rights. We already have a very strict set of gun laws in the state, but this is way over the top. It’s like having a college professor say, ‘I’m going to read your essay and if I don’t like it, I’m going to give it back to you.’”

ATF Form 4473

“We’re no longer taking a cookie-cutter approach to issuing firearms licenses,” he said, in the Lowell Sun.

More time? More time for what? How is more time than the law dictates and burdensome, unnecessary requirements anything more than discrimination and an unlawful requirement to enact backdoor gun control by either denying citizens of their Constitutional rights or at a minimum delaying those rights?

How do you feel about Lowell, Massachusetts, new requirement to obtain an “unrestricted right-to-carry” gun permit by writing an essay and increasing the fees? Share you opinions in the comment section.

SLRule

Growing up in Pennsylvania’s game-rich Allegany region, Dave Dolbee was introduced to whitetail hunting at a young age. At age 19 he bought his first bow while serving in the U.S. Navy, and began bowhunting after returning from Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. Dave was a sponsored Pro Staff Shooter for several top archery companies during the 1990s and an Olympic hopeful holding up to 16 archery records at one point. During Dave’s writing career, he has written for several smaller publications as well as many major content providers such as Guns & Ammo, Shooting Times, Outdoor Life, Petersen’s Hunting, Rifle Shooter, Petersen’s Bowhunting, Bowhunter, Game & Fish magazines, Handguns, F.O.P Fraternal Order of Police, Archery Business, SHOT Business, OutdoorRoadmap.com, TheGearExpert.com and others. Dave is currently a staff writer for Cheaper Than Dirt!

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Comments (224)

  • Marc McCain

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    All I can say is I am glad I live in Texas.

    Reply

  • Hide Behind

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    Taylor is the Chief Executive Officer of Lowell Police Department; He is not the elected Sheriff.
    In most New England States the elimination of county governments were eliminated by local voters, and while there remains Administrative Disrricts using old county borders those districts do still elect a County Sheriff Who in this area thst is called Middlesex County Lowel is situated.
    The sheriffs odffice andi its correctional facility are under The appointed officers at State Secretariats. And thenOffice of Deeds are both under State appointed Executive Office of Public Safety.
    Taylor is a politico who. Is building a feifdom under the local Gentry who support, yes gun control and al the latest Social Engineering led by Federal monies.
    If the people of Lowell feel that their Constitutional Rights are being violated by local police and officials then it is up to them to approach Sheriff Koutoujian.
    He is the man who Constitutionaly stands between the people and abusivepolice and government personel and offices.

    Reply

  • Loren Gee

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    I will write that essay and here it is

    “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

    It contains 26 words and says everything required and no cop in the country can dispute it. Each and everyone of them swore to defend this exact wording

    Reply

  • James Bahen

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    The Irony is that is these stupid people were alive during the Revolutionary War we would still be a British Colony. I can only imagine Paul Revere, Patrick Henry and James Madison are spinning in their graves saying “Who are these stupid people and how did they become Americans?” or “Are these idiots the ones, we fought for their freedom?” or ” Has any of these fools read the Constitution?”

    Reply

  • MattG

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    This is almost common place in RI – a shall-issue state – as well. While towns cannot impose their own stricter regulations on firearms or RIGL 11-47-11 permits, if you’re lucky enough to live in a town that does not flat out reject applications, you are probably still required to write a statement of need and a justification which amounts to an essay.

    Reply

  • Robert Amaty

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    Absolutely insane !! That guy should have his head examined ! God Blessed America and the 2nd Amendment !!

    Reply

  • joedirt

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    Not a bad idea to make people write an essay to get a permit, keeps complete retards from getting a permit. And it is not like it is easy to just walk in and get a permit anyway. In Indiana, you have to 1)pay online to the state police $75. Then you have 90 days to 2) get electronically fingerprinted $12. And depending where you live this can be a pain in the ass, cause there are only so many places you can do it. (where i went it was only on fridays). Then 3) you have to bring $50 cash to your local police department to finish the application on certain days and hours. then wait 4 to 6 weeks to get your permit in the mail……….I would have rather written a friggin essay!!!!!!!!! : )

    Reply

    • Victor S.

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      Joedirt, I’m not sure you’ve read the article in full. In your case, the essay would’ve been an additional step to those 1-2-3 ones you described in your post…

      Reply

    • BubbaJ

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      So you are OK with all gun laws. right? They are all Constitutionally correct?
      A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

      Where is the PERMIT clause here in the 27 WORDS?

      Simple Definition of infringe
      : to do something that does not obey or follow (a rule, law, constitution.) ( chiefly US )
      to wrongly limit or restrict (something, such as another person’s rights)

      Reply

  • joedirt

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    What is a “far left liberal agenda” when it comes to taking firearms away from people?? What is that? I think it is pretty childish to assume that the gun companies are going to let any politician get in the way of them making money. It is pretty obvious that the NRA is in bed with the gun manufacturers and they are trying to scare us into buying more guns cause the liberals are “gunna take rrr guns.” Every time the news or NRA claims we are going to lose our rights, everybody buys a bunch of guns, “just in case.” And the gun manufacturers swim in profits. No need to be scared, ain’t nobody takin our guns as long as gun companies are making loads of money, stress less my friends!!

    Reply

    • Keysrat

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      NRA has 5,000,000 individual cash paying members. Not just gun manufacturers. You should join if you are a 2nd amendment supporter. A bill was passed in 1994 the Bill Clinton era AWB. Something like it or worse could pass again without the NRA and other groups supporting the 2nd amendment. They are not just in bed with gun manufacturers. They help ensure American’s right to choice which firearm works best for their lawful purposes. Not a politician.

      Reply

  • John W

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    Ok folks you can quote anything and everything you want. That still does not stop certain public officials from doing what they choose. Even Obama has stepped across the Constitutional boundaries in regards to immigration. It took the Supreme Court to stop him. That is what it will take with these government officials who come up with their own arbitrary rules. It’s that simple. Court cases need to be filed against these officials to show they can not infringe on our rights. No one person has the right to decide if another has the right to own a gun. Period! Americans need to stand up and say enough. If we don’t our rights will eventually disappear. Now bitch all you want and state whatever you want but in the end it will take a court case to ultimately stop this madness.

    Reply

    • Howard

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      Seems an unconstitutional rule, by an official abusing his power.
      When enough complain, maybe a constitutional lawyer will take the case to court and this type of crime will be stopped.

      Reply

  • Steve B

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    Gentlemen- I do not consider anything north of the middle of Va. to be America anymore.

    Reply

    • Russ G

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      Although I agree with you about the east sir, We out west in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming consider ourselves Americans and are gladly able to support the cause. Now having said that California, Oregon and Washington state can kiss off

      Reply

    • Ben

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      That last statement is very well said indeed by Steve B

      Reply

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