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Letter: Massacres and gun control

Published: Friday, Feb. 1, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

To the Editor:

After the recent horrific mass shooting of children in Connecticut, there finally is a renewed interest in addressing the issues of gun control. The president has put forth a comprehensive plan to deal with the alarming rise in homicides. He has also immediately issued a number of executive orders that do not require congressional action. Some of the most important issues must be dealt with by our by elected representatives who are tasked with protecting public safety.

As a skeet shooter, I have no interest in interfering with the rights of citizens to legally own guns for sporting purposes. But it is essential that we have comprehensive background checks to keep individuals with criminal records or mental illness from owning guns. Assault weapons with clips comparable to a submachine gun have absolutely no place in sport. Such weapons are not for sport but for killing. Pistols with such clips should be banned. The deranged young man who shot all of those little children in Connecticut used a Bushmaster assault weapon and a Glock automatic pistol legally bought by his mother. In fact, no hunter requires a gun with more than two shots. As the law stands now, it is possible in many states to buy almost any type of weapon without any checks at all on the Internet or at gun shows. Think about this, a deranged youth or adult who is a terrible shot can shoot dozens of people in seconds by spraying with an automatic. These clips must be banned.

It has been argued that gun controls do not work. Australia was experiencing widespread shootings. They simply required a 28-day waiting period and certain checks. They cut killings with guns in half.

Our gun-related deaths are eight times higher than in comparable nations. Our rate is three per 100,000; the United Kingdom’s is .07 per 100,000, where they do not allow almost any handguns. Wake up America.

Edward Lynd KendallBatavia

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