Criminal justice professor discusses differences between local and Texas gun control

Massachusetts versus Texas, we wanted to know what restrictions there are on the federal level.
Published: May. 25, 2022 at 7:13 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Western Mass News is digging deeper into what makes Massachusetts one of the strictest states when it comes to gun control.

Massachusetts versus Texas, we wanted to know what restrictions there are on the federal level.

“This young man that was able to go and buy two assault weapons, and be able to walk out with no background is just unimaginable,” said State Representative Carlos González.

He weighed in on the Texas elementary school shooting. 18-year-old Salvador Ramos purchased two AR-15-style rifles in Texas. The purchases were legal.

In Massachusetts it is illegal to possess guns that have magazines with over 10 rounds of capacity. Assault weapons are banned. You must be 21 to purchase a handgun or large-capacity weapon.

You must also be 21 in order to have a license to carry, however, you can have a firearms identification card at 15 with parental consent. Both have to go through the local police department as licensing authority. Also, background checks are required for private sales.

Associate Criminal Justice Professor David Kuzmeski at American International College broke down the federal laws for us.

“If you have been convicted of domestic violence, you’re disqualified under federal law,” Professor Kuzmeski told us.

But that’s not all:

“It’s a federal crime to own a firearm if you have a felony conviction,” he added. “The problem is, there are loopholes in the federal law.”

Professor Kuzmeski explained one of the gaps in the law.

“One of the loopholes is there are gun shows,” he said. “If you go to a gun show, you can purchase it without that check.”

As for Texas, Professor Kuzmeski had this to say:

“Virtually, no restriction. It is being of the age, producing your identification like a driver’s license and surviving the background check, which would simply be the criminal records check.”

We reached out to Congressman Richard Neal about the calls for stricter gun control laws, a controversial hot topic in Congress. He told us in a statement, in part:

“The gunman has robbed children of a full life; family members of time and memories with loved ones; and a community and nation scarred with grief. It is inexcusable that we cannot pass common sense, lifesaving laws.”

President Biden addressed the nation Tuesday night. He made an emotional plea for federal gun reform, something he has done countless times over the years.