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Last month, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey dropped a bomb on the Bay State’s gun owners and retailers deciding on her own to institute an ‘assault weapons’ ban. She hung her legal hat on a provision of a law on the books that specifically allows her to prohibit any gun that’s a “copy” or “duplicate” of those banned in (the first) President Clinton’s federal AWB of 1994. Now she’s published a description of guns that are not covered by her diktat. Buy ’em while you still can.

Q: Are there examples or categories of weapons that are not assault weapons?

Yes. Many rifles, shotguns, and pistols are not assault weapons, and therefore are not “copies or duplicates” of enumerated assault weapons. For example, the following are not assault weapons under G.L. c. 140, § 121:

Any handgun on the current version of the state’s Approved Firearms Roster, available here links to PDF file;

  • Any .22 caliber rifle;
  • Any Ruger Mini 14 or substantially-similar model weapon;
  • Any of the hundreds of rifles and shotguns listed on this list links to PDF file —Appendix A to 18 U.S.C. § 922, as appearing on September 13, 1994;
  • Any weapon that is operated by manual bolt, pump, lever, or slide action;
  • Any weapon that is an antique, relic, or theatrical prop;
  • Any semiautomatic rifle that cannot accept a detachable magazine that holds more than five rounds of ammunition;
  • Any semiautomatic shotgun that cannot hold more than five rounds of ammunition in a fixed or detachable magazine.

This list is not exhaustive; it is meant for illustrative purposes only. Many other weapons are not assault weapons or “copies or duplicates” of assault weapons.

Q:  Are any .22 caliber rifles affected by the Enforcement Notice?

No.  However, a weapon that is manufactured as an Assault Weapon cannot be made legal by alterations that allow it to discharge .22-caliber ammunition.

Q: Does this Enforcement Notice change which semi-automatic pistols may be sold in Massachusetts?

No. The Enforcement Notice makes no change to the list of handguns, including semi-automatic pistols, approved for sale in Massachusetts.  The most recent list (August 2016) is available here links to PDF file.  The Massachusetts Assault Weapons Ban does prohibit the sale of five semi-automatic pistols, the INTRATEC TEC-9, TEC-DC9 and TEC-22; and the Action Arms Israeli Military Industries UZI and Galil. Only these weapons and copies or duplicates of these specific pistols are prohibited under the ban, and none appear on the approved list.

For more information, please visit the Assault Weapon Ban Enforcement page.

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113 Responses to Massachusetts Reveals ‘Guns That Are Not Assault Weapons’ (Yet)

    • Did you glace at the chart? Parts of an Assault Weapon include a “charging handle.”

      OH MY GOD! It’s got a charging handle!!! Isn’t that “the thing that goes back?”

      It’s sure is a good thing that the Mini-14 doesn’t have one of those…

    • Mini 14 shoots the same round as the ar15. It takes the same magazine. It just doesnt look as scary. These people have no clue

        • If you want a same-mag example, Kel-Tec SU-16. Especially when contrasted against Ares SCR.

      • The Mini-14 part stood out to me too. I remember in 2013, when Congress shot down Feinstein’s AWB, someone in Congress actually made the point to Feinstein that her bill was meaningless because it did not include weapons such as the Mini-14. This led them to conclude that the criteria for banning was based entirely on cosmetics, and not in function/operation. And they were right.

  1. Any .22 caliber rifle? Well that settles it! Everything I was worried about has been rendered mute. I hope she doesn’t find someone on her staff who actually has an understanding of firearms.

      • The order does not specify a cartridge, merely a caliber. Caliber is merely the diameter of the projectile, not a specific cartridge, a distinction lost on them (and evidently you as well). 5.56×45 does indeed fire a .22 caliber projectile.

        In my state (WV) the DNR states that .223 and 5.56 are indeed .22 caliber, and therefore legal to predator hunt with at night (law says no larger than .22 caliber).

      • Actually it’s closer to being the same caliber but different family. ” In guns, particularly firearms, caliber or calibre is the approximate internal diameter of the barrel, or the diameter of the projectile it fires…” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caliber – looks like a coupla typos in there)

        Per SAAMI, what we commonly call .22 (22LR and variants) has a diameter of .225 in. What we call .223 has a diameter of .2245 in. It doesn’t appear that ANY common cartridges have a bullet diameter of .2200 in. Given these dimensions, and the definition of caliber, 22LR and 223Rem are the SAME caliber.

        http://saami.org/specifications_and_information/index.cfm

        Don’t expect this to make any difference to the dedicated civilian disarmament crowd. The deeper they get into technical details, the clearer it becomes they have no idea what they’re talking about. But that’s. It gives them more room for selective enforcement.

        • Does she get into a technical discussion in depth on the precise differences which make a mini-14 *not* an AW, while an AR *is* an AW? Cuz I’d sure like to see that!

        • Larry, I think the pertinent part of the definition is: Ruger has manufacturing facilities in the area, so they get “protection”, much like the mafia provides.

      • Sammy, that’s a popular misconception, but caliber is not cartridge. All 22LR, 5.56NATO, .223 Winchester, 22BR, 22 Dasher, 22-250, and others are all 22(x) caliber. They are all different cartridges.

  2. Quick, someone get the calipers and measure the diameter of an AR15 round! I think we found the Healey Loophole!

  3. Ash’s boomstick is safe then…and his lever gun

    “Lady, I’m gonna have to ask you to leave the store”

    • Mini-14 is not black and scary looking, so it is good. Crazy isn’t it. This proves why a ban on AR-15’s is illogical. This lady is bat s&%t crazy.

      • Even crazier considering a Mini-14 was ACTUALLY used in one of the most well known, notorious shootouts in the modern era.

        Their motivations are so devoid of any logic and reasoning it’s almost scary to think a human being can be THAT stupid.

        • Logic and reasoning are irrelevant. They want what they want, and they’re going to get there by hook or by crook.

      • There are plenty of black and “scary looking” Mini-14 versions (e.g. this one). Apparently even those are legal, if “any Mini-14” is legal. I wonder if a Mini-30 is cool under the “substantially similar model weapon” part of that BS.

        • Jeremy, you are correct, but at the time the original Assault Weapon Ban was instituted, the only common Mini-14s were conventionally-wood-stocked models (the factory folding-stock version was restricted to police and military only). The hunters were raising a fit about their “hunting rifles getting banned”, and the visual features of the Mini-14 were so close to many bolt-action guns (conventional wood stock, no pistol grip, no bayonet lug, no factory folding stock for non-cops, etc.) that it was difficult to figure a way to ban the Mini without affecting other guns, so the Mini-14 got a pass from the Feds. After the Federal ban sunsetted, most states that extended the ban at the state level just adopted the Federal AWB wording and definitions, with minor changes (if any).

      • Except for when it is. Take a look at Ruger’s catalog. I’ve actually gotten an ignorant controllist to claim the Mini-14 Tac should be illegal because…looks scary, all while claiming the wood stocked Ranch version is perfectly acceptable. He didn’t know they were the same weapon. After I pointed out his lack of knowledge, he tried to back pedal and claim the Tac model is more dangerous because…pistol grip!!! Good thing Mr. Breivik didn’t know how much more lethal a pistol grip makes the mini, freaking dumb anti’s.

        • That’s exactly what makes this interpretation of law so freaking funny! Anti’s will argue to the moon and back that the addition of a pistol grip, flash suppressor, collapsible stock, etc makes there weapons more dangerous. But apparently the opposite isn’t true because under this interpretation, you can’t remove any of these items to make the weapon legal because the removal of them doesn’t make it any less dangerous.

    • Not only is the Mini acceptable, any “substantially similar” gun is also acceptable. I would submit that any magazine fed semi auto rifle in the same caliber would be “substantially similar” in actual function to a Mini. Add to this the fact that any .22 caliber rifle is OK and I think we have a loophole here. LOL

      • Not only that, but the Mini is based on the design of the M-14, so the M-1A and any rifle with a similar action should be good to go as well.

    • Ruger Mini-14s are good to go for two reasons:
      (1) They have wood stocks without pistol grips.*
      (2) They cost upwards of $1,000 which means only upper-middle class and above can afford them.

      * The Massachusetts Attorney General most likely does not realize that Ruger Mini-14s are available with scary black synthetic stocks … otherwise she would find a way to include them in the list of banned rifles.

      • And as everyone knows, the A-Team used Mini-14s, which couldn’t penetrate an empty oil drum or cardboard box, and never once hurt anybody.

        • I watched an episode last night where a bad guy with a 6-shot revolver shot at them 28 times without reloading! Or hitting anything, natch. (the 28th shot blew out a tire, ending the car chase). Gotta love it!

      • Clearly, outlawing pistol grips on rifles is a common sense move on the path to decreasing the number of pistols out there! By some ways of thinking.

      • “Shhhh!!! Not so loud, she’ll hear you!!!”
        Nice to know my piggy gun fitted with folding collapsible stock, rails, light, holographic sight and thirty-round magazines is good to go in a state I never intend to visit or pass through. You New Jersey gun owners can move here to Texas (we like laughing at how ‘yall talk).

      • Where are you paying $1k for a wood stocked Mini? The local Wal-Mart here in North Alabama has them for $750.

      • Here in the north-western part of the US I’ve only seen Mini-14’s in the $7-800 price range… $1,000+ for a Mini-14 (Rolls eyes)

    • As a MA resident I’m forced to look on the bright side of life Rabbi – and it ain’t easy. But Springfield’s M1A is also unaffected as it’s a conventionally-stocked rifle. I’ve gotten more orders for them and Mini 14s lately than I have any other guns.

  4. Wait and if it has been like this for a while I appologize for my ignorance, but now they are saying semi-auto SHOTGUNS are magazine limited as well even if they have a FIXED magazine. So say a Mossberg 930 with an extended mag tube for 3 gun is no bueno. I seem to remember during the panics a lot of people saying “oh yea even if they ban AR and derivatives they won’t ban or limit shotguns and even the harshest gun ban states don’t have restrictions on shotguns outside of how many rounds you can have in the gun when you hunt.” apparently the Libs heard that and went oh yea haha watch this.

    • Well, there certainly are stock (unaltered from the factory) semi-auto shotguns that have fixed tube magazines which hold more than five shells.

      Regardless of whether or not the restriction is new in Massachusetts, we have an example of a state banning certain shotguns with fixed tube magazines.

  5. As a New Englander, This just another case of State Government Run amok! Massachusetts is Full of crime, political and police corruption!

  6. Massachusetts RepubliCON Governor. Charlie ” The Barker ” Baker is a RINO. By definition a deadbeat RepubliCON…Past it on…For Massachusetts !

    • It’s the PRM. What do you expect?

      See also Mitten Romney. The state is so far from 1775 that is it truly pathetic.

    • No, he is a Republican. And the sooner all y’all understand that the Republican Party is NOT YOUR FRIEND, the better.
      Donald Trump is NOT a Republican. Rand Paul is NOT a Republican. Mitch McConnell IS a Republican. Mitt Romney IS a Republican.

      Get it?

  7. Ah, good to see the fruits of Bill Rugers business motivated “all those other guns should be banned but my Mini is a perfectly respectable option for sportsmen” Congressional testimony still alive after all these years.

    Somebody get me a shovel. I have a corpse to piss on.

  8. Those of you wondering why the Mini 14 is permitted you can thank Bill Ruger for that. Back during the lead up to the ’94 AWB he hooked his wagon to the blue donkey because back then Ruger preferred to focus on Fudd products and he was more than happy to play nice with the Demon-crats.

    It has also been said that old man Bill wanted to see his sales of the Mini increase at the expense of the AR-15. Regardless of the truth he managed to keep the Mini off the AWB and since the Mass. AWB is a copy of the ’94 bill than Ta-da!

    • This country needs more William Walkers and fewer Randy Weavers. When you head for the hills and live in seclusion, it gives the FBI/ATF freedom to assassinate you and make up any story they want.
      If they take down “illegal weapons” owners in suburbia or urban environments, Lon Hariuchi has a harder time getting a clear shot at an American citizen. And the murder will be captured on video.

  9. that picture is making me crack up ……their all looking at the picture like it just came from outer space

  10. So I can buy a mini 14 with a black polymer stock, box magazine, scope, rails, and forward grip… But the AR15 is banned.

    I think I may have just hurt myself trying to process that.

  11. We can thank Libertarian VP nominee Bill Weld for this mess. Remember that if you think they are the way to go.

    ED:

    Watch this great video. Start at 16:30

    http://www.guns.com/2016/08/12/libertarian-vp-nominee-william-weld-is-kinda-anti-gun-video

    “The five-shot rifle, that’s a standard military rifle; the problem is if you attach a clip to it so it can fire more shells and if you remove the pin so that it becomes an automatic weapon, and those are independent criminal offenses,” Weld said. “That is when they become– essentially– a weapon of mass destruction. The problem with handguns probably is even worse than the problem of the AR15.”

    And then he goes on to ramble about the virtues of the terrorist watch list.

    404:libertarian not found.

    • It’s a real shame. If there was ever an election where a strong 3rd party candidate could have a viable shot, it is this one. Instead we get these sacks of crap.

    • I think John McAfee stated it best. Johnson and Weld aren’t libertarians they’re just liberal republicans.

    • “..and if you remove the pin so that it becomes an automatic weapon…”

      Seriously…where is this pin? I’ve assembled from parts way too many AR-pattern rifles and I’ve never come across this ‘pin’. Maybe one of those sneaky roll-pins is actually the ‘de-full-auto-inator’ pin!

      Maybe it is a ‘ghost’ pin 😉

      • He doesn’t understand anything about the Constitution, nothing about automatic or semiautomatic weapons, but those topics make him appear a freaking *genius* compared to his lack of understanding of weapons of mass destruction. The man must be on a respirator, as he is clearly too stupid to breathe.

    • Ah, there it is! Since the site redesign, I only read a couple articles a day now (I’m surprised at how often I used to get hooked in by the teaser paragraph, and how few headlines pique my curiosity enough to click now), so I’ve been missing this. Good to know you’re still out there, injecting anti-vaccine comments into completely unrelated topics. All is right with the world.

      • Lol, glad you missed my posts. Funny I didn’t mention vaccines, but what makes you think the state will stop there once you forfeit your right to make your own medical decisions? They own you, like livestock, you have no rights, guns or not.

  12. I assume that ubiquitous Glock handguns such as Generation 3 Glock 17s are legal to purchase and own in Massachusetts …

    Riddle me this:
    Glock makes 33 round factory magazines for their Glock 17 handgun … which means you can have a Glock 17 handgun with the same or greater ammunition capacity as a semi-auto Uzi or Tec-9 which are banned. Why is it legal to own a Glock 17 but illegal to own an Uzi or Tec-9?

  13. And I suppose an M1A is good to go because it is substantially similar to the Mini 14.

    Why don’t they just admit they have a hard on for anything similar in appearance to an AR or AK type rifle or shotgun because they look scary in the movies?

  14. Kudos to the AG for trying to get those plastic abominations off the street. Real men always carry a Garand.

    (Do I need to append a /sarc?)

    • Nope, the sarcasm came through pretty well but you should have changed your screen name to ‘Bill Ruger’ for this post.

  15. Would the Ares SCR, Kel-Tec RDB and their SU lines all be consider similar enough to the Mini-14 not to be banned?

  16. “Action Arms Israeli Military Industries UZI and Galil. Only these weapons and copies or duplicates of these specific pistols are prohibited ”

    Uzi – not a pistol
    Galil – clearly not a pistol

    Ignorance and power is a frightening combination

      • Yeah, but let’s be honest. We are talking about air quotes here. No one really believes a stock-less version of a rifle is now magically a “pistol.”

  17. The British are coming! The British are coming! Oh wait Mass residents won’t take up arms(?)…where’s Ralph to weigh in?

  18. Isn’t the definition of an “antique” firearm one that was made more than 50 years ago? So various automatic weapons from World War 2 and the original AK47 are legal under this list.

    And what about the various weapons made in 22 LR that are reproductions of various autos, like the Thompson SMG, the ST-44 and so on?

    The more some people know, the more dangerous they become.

    • Nope. 18 USC 921(a)16 “(16) The term “antique firearm” means—
      (A) any firearm (including any firearm with a matchlock, flintlock, percussion cap, or similar type of ignition system) manufactured in or before 1898; or
      (B) any replica of any firearm described in subparagraph (A) if such replica—
      (i) is not designed or redesigned for using rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition, or
      (ii) uses rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition which is no longer manufactured in the United States and which is not readily available in the ordinary channels of commercial trade; or

      (C) any muzzle loading rifle, muzzle loading shotgun, or muzzle loading pistol, which is designed to use black powder, or a black powder substitute, and which cannot use fixed ammunition. For purposes of this subparagraph, the term “antique firearm” shall not include any weapon which incorporates a firearm frame or receiver, any firearm which is converted into a muzzle loading weapon, or any muzzle loading weapon which can be readily converted to fire fixed ammunition by replacing the barrel, bolt, breechblock, or any combination thereof.

  19. I love the expression of the black woman just to the right of the displays (in the picture)… She looks like she’s afraid the diagrams might suddenly come to life and start shooting!

    • Well, of course, that picture is pointing RIGHT AT HER! That is almost as terrifying as a half-eaten Pop-Tart.

  20. Man oh man if Ruger could tighten up their mini 14/30 a little for accuracy and use a heavier barrel, they would own the market in all the anti gun states.

    Right now a good mini is 4-5 inches at a 100.

  21. It still makes me baffled and angry that people support this nonsense. It’s entirely arbitrary. From top to bottom. There’s no logic or reason or form of intelligence in it. Just reflexive “ban that thing I don’t like!”

    Sigh.

  22. lol, this is exactly what gun laws in Canada are like. Right up to the restriction of rifles that ‘look scary’. It’s unreal really that the retard is strong on both sides.

  23. The Mini-14 is legal even though it can accept mags larger than five rounds? SMH.

    This is absolute proof that these people are incompetent idiots who only care about cosmetic features and, in reality, have no fucking idea what they’re on about.

    Is a Mini still legal with an Archangle Sparta stock on it or does it then have all the “parts of an assault weapon”?

    God these people are retarded.

  24. They listed handguns that are not allowed (I didn’t read the actual approved list) so would AR/AK pistols count? They are exclusively sold as handguns, manufactured and sold as such. ATF even says so.

  25. I feel for you folks. They fucked us pretty hard in Canada with a large ban list back in the 90’s. Luckily we got to keep our AR-15’s but we lost AK’s and they talk about banning AR’s every time there is a shooting in America.

  26. 1 – Well, that’s backwards. Citizens can do anything they like, for any reason, or none. Our event-management staff want to restrict what we can do, they justify it first, to us, in terms of how it’s good for us. Subjects are permitted this or that by their overlord owners, for any reason or none, no explanation required.

    List what guns are prohibited, and why. Not this other thing.

    2 – Laws are for people to live within. If citizens can’t figure out what’s in and what’s out, the law has failed on it’s face.

    Any law so confusing you have to do a briefing on what it means is so fatally flawed, the remedy is repeal (and replace.)(*)

    3 – The AG’s job is to enforce law in place, not make law or policy. Since these agents are subcontracted to create and hold space for us citizens, on our behalf, so we can do what we want, laws restricting citizens, or delegating authorities to agencies should be interpreted narrowly. Laws restricting govt, or asserting autonomy of the citizens should be interpreted broadly.

    If this AG wants to make policy, she should run for policy-making office. That she can’t seem to help herself from overreaching in the smaller sandbox of enforcement disqualifies her for that, too. BUT to maintain an open political process, we let intrinsically disqualified people run if they want. Doing this also sells popcorn.

    (*) I get that an ambiguous law is a feature, not a bug. People who think this way have disqualified themselves from holding office. Also polite company. But at least it’s a tell that works.

  27. Anders B. Breivik killed 77 people in Norway in 2011. He used a Ruger .223 Mini 14. Hey, don’t tell politicians in Massachussets.
    3 people where killed in Toronto yesterday. With a crossbow. Don’t tell MA AG either.

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