The Massachusetts House approved a bill that would roll back the state's 1998 gun control laws that barred anyone convicted of a violent felony or misdameanor from owning a gun. The bill now goes to the state senate for approval.
Gun control activists were outraged that the bill passed during a time of rising violence. "The Legislature should be looking for way to remove illegal guns, not re-arm criminals", said a spokesman of Stop Handgun Violence.
A key sponser of the bill said that too many law abiding citizens are being punished for things that happened 20 - 30 years ago or as children. The 1998 law was considered one of the toughest in the country for gun control.