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Old June 19, 2012, 10:24 AM   #1
Glenn E. Meyer
Join Date: November 17, 2000
Posts: 18,794
Stupid MA / Boston Question

So I'm listening to a Spenser novel (newest one - not by Parker) on the way to work. In this, Hawk and Spenser bust into a house and in a complicated (but incredibly stupid gun usage), Hawk shoots a BG with a pump Mossberg.

The cops don't immediately arrest him. My question, what is the local law on driving around town and walking into a house (not yours) with a loaded pump shotgun under your coat.

It would be OK in TX but MA/Boston? Yes, I could look it up but lazy.

BTW, the book is feh. Spenser's time has come and gone. He still chortles about carrying a Chief's Special, listening to Jazz and drinking single malt. Such a detective cliche - boring. Get a new gun for God's sake.

Not that the 38 isn't a good gun. I got 'em but if I was going to face danger (as part of my job) - I'd do better than that.
NRA, TSRA, IDPA, NTI, Polite Soc. - Aux Armes, Citoyens
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Last edited by Glenn E. Meyer; June 19, 2012 at 03:07 PM.
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Old June 19, 2012, 02:51 PM   #2
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Uh... no. Not legally.
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Old June 19, 2012, 03:28 PM   #3
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What year is the book set in?
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Old June 19, 2012, 05:54 PM   #4
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Laws mean nothing to Hawk- never have.

Spenser also carries a Browning HP sometimes IIRC.

I was unaware until now of Atkins picking this up. Interesting. Spenser was a unique personality and I don't know if anyone else can truly "do" him other than the creator.
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Old June 20, 2012, 01:16 PM   #5
Glenn E. Meyer
Join Date: November 17, 2000
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Seems to be set in the now. At least they are using cell phones.

There are two gun fights - in each Spenser acts like a complete idiot.

Don't buy it - if you are someone who like to follow series (like me) - the public library is your friend.

Spenser does have a SW 40 as he calls it - which he uses when the cops take his 357 away.

Hawk carries a 44 magnum which clearly hinders rapid follow up shots in a multiple attacker gun fight.

At the end, Spenser babbles about how baseball has the rhythm of smooth jazz. Get a life, grandpa.
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Old June 20, 2012, 02:00 PM   #6
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Spenser with a .357? Odd... in Parker's books, he carried a .38 Chief's Special, and sometimes a BHP 9mm. In the last book or two, he had acquired the S&W .40 (model undesignated). I don't recall him ever using a .357.

Hawk started out in the series as a gang enforcer, who happens to be a friend of Spenser's from their time fighting the good fight in Biafra (which would make them both somewhere around 65 years old, but who's counting?). Hawk often does things that aren't legal in the books. He normally carries a .44 magnum or a shotgun. Note that Hawk is supposed to be a large, former pro heavyweight fighter, so conceivably his follow-up capability with the .44 should be better than average. (Still not the weapon I'd have picked, but hey...)

Interestingly, in the book where Spenser comes closest to death, he's shot from ambush by an assassin who uses a silenced .22 pistol.

Spenser makes baseball and/or jazz references in several, if not most books. If that comes as a surprise, Glenn, my guess is this was your first Spenser book.

The earlier books in the series were the better reads.

Edit: Note, Glenn, that in at least one of the stories, when trouble is actively expected, Susan gives Spenser grief about carrying the 5-shot .38, and suggests the BHP would be a better idea.

Spenser likes the .38 because it's comfortable to carry.

Reminds me of any number of threads on "how much is enough?"
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Old June 20, 2012, 02:33 PM   #7
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MA wasn't always stupid. I got a pistol licence in MA when I was 20 maybe 21. The license was good for any handgun, no restrictions on where to carry, etc. That was before the current oppressive laws. Fortunately my military career didn't station me in MA. I only went back there to visit my parents when they were alive.
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Old June 20, 2012, 02:53 PM   #8
Glenn E. Meyer
Join Date: November 17, 2000
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Spenser gets shot in this one through his own quip filled genius tactics.

Susan should have bought him a Glock 27 with an extended mag for his belt. However, MA probably wouldn't allow that evil weapon.

I know so many old toots like me who shoot state of the art guns, that I can't take a tough guy going so retro, esp. in a dangerous business.

Hawk would be in jail in this book and in fact, Spenser would be too. Their first shooting was definitely not justified as it started with an armed home invasion by them.

I guess I'm done with Spenser jumped the shark for me.
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Old June 20, 2012, 11:21 PM   #9
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Pure Fiction

I used to live there and the scenario in the book is pure fiction. In 1991 I had a LEGALLY owned Ruger 10/22 which was stolen from my property. As a good citizen I reported the theft to the Boston PD. I was advised by the PD that the DA's office would be notified of the theft and determine if I was negligent and subject to possible prosecution. As it turned out the DA did not find cause to prosecute me for having a .22 caliber rifle stolen from my property by an unknown subject(s). So as the victim of the crime, I could have been punished on a judicial whim. The system is stacked against gun owners and self-defense as a principle. Massachusetts at the time had a ridiculous "RETREAT" law, which required potential crime victims to retreat even if you were threatened in your home.
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