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Gun Laws Top City Council President's 2013 Goals

Gun control laws are regulated at the state and federal level, but Councillor Stephen Murphy believes the city can effect change, too.

Returning this week to the role of Boston City Council president, after being unanimously elected to the position for 2013, Councillor Stephen Murphy got right down to business, announcing that he plans to take on an assault weapon ban this year.

“No sportsman or gun collector needs an assault weapon. There is no sport in using an automatic rifle,” said Murphy, an at-large councillor from Hyde Park.

The Boston City Council and Mayor Thomas Menino publicly supported a ban on assault weapons after the Newtown school shooting in December.

Gun control laws are regulated at the state and federal levels, but Murphy believes the council can effect change in three ways:

  • By supporting the ban on assault weapons; 
  • By supporting calls for strict background checks and mental health screenings on all handguns; 
  • And by placing public pressure on the entertainment industry to reign in the glorification of violence.

Murphy also promised to be actively involved in the rejuvenation of the Fairmount-Indigo Commuter Rail project through Dorchester, according to a press release. Several stations along the line are poised to be activated in the coming year as Transit Oriented Developments (TODs), which will provide housing near transit stations.

“Many lower-wage jobs require workers to be in close proximity to the city, but housing and transit prices have increased while wages have remained relatively steady," Murphy said. "The TODs will meet the needs of the city workforce by providing affordable housing opportunities, increased community development, and decreased transit times.”

This is Murphy's third term as council president. In 2012, the council voted on rule changes that make the city council president position a two-year term that coincides with the election cycle. Councilors may serve multiple terms, but not consecutively, and the rules go into effect in 2014.

Steve Kavanagh January 10, 2013 at 07:46 PM
"And by placing public pressure on the entertainment industry to reign in the glorification of violence." Does this mean the city will forbid movies like "The Town" and "The Departed" from being filmed here due to the heavy gun violence in those films? Councilor Murphy, please clarify exactly what you mean by "placing public pressure on the entertainment industry/"
Joseph January 10, 2013 at 08:24 PM
Councilor - Did you play cops and robbers or cowboys and indians as a child? How about watching The Lone Ranger or M*A*S*H? Public pressure sounds like a threat. Steve has a valid point. Are you going to tell movie studies what they can and cannot film in the City of Boston? Good luck with that!! And I disagree. A gun collector 100% has the right to own and collect an assault weapon. Get off the bandwagon. You should be spending your time and energy fixing mental health issues, not worrying about what collectors are investing their money on. PS...Maybe think about getting that dye job professionally done. The orange hair and your eyebrows make you look funny.
Just a person! January 10, 2013 at 08:34 PM
I think that Mayor should stick to running the city, and hopefully not for another term, good god is there anybody else out there! And as far as gun control laws, do you realize that Boston and Brookline are the only two cities that require you to go thru a qualification course, mmm how much is that costing the city? Boston has one of the stricktist gun laws than any other city or town, really it is my constitutional right to own and bear arms,

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