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Stricter Gun Laws Aren't The Answer

Letter to the Editor:

For anyone who has read Alan Cheah’s column, “Thirty Rounds” in the Sierra Star (1/17/13), please consider my response before buying into his imaginary world, absent of all reality. Mr. Cheah spends considerable words having you imagine the senseless deaths of the children in Newtown and how a smaller magazine capacity on his Mom’s gun would have lowered the carnage.

I offer a far better image. Lanza’s Mom properly stores her weapons as required by current gun laws, so her mentally ill son can’t get them. Result? Nobody dies. My point: Lanza and his Mom were responsible for what happened in Newtown, not the weapons illegally obtained and used.

Some relevant facts: According to the FBI’s most recent Uniform Crime Report, in 2011, the violent crime rate and the murder rate both dropped by nearly 50 percent. At the same time, the number of firearms increased dramatically, including more than six million “assault weapons.” Guns aren’t the problem. Significantly more murders were committed with hammers, clubs, and knives. Drunk drivers are responsible for nearly 10,000 deaths each year – far more than the number of deaths involving guns.

For those who mistakenly think stricter gun laws are the answer, consider Chicago. Obama’s hometown has the most restrictive gun laws in the nation, but more than 500 murders occurred there last year. The problem – gangs and drugs. As for Great Britain, the real facts are the incidence of violent crime is almost twice the per capita rate of the U.S. Criminals do it without guns. Let’s address the real problems, not waste $500 million on knee jerk programs that even Obama admits may not save any lives.

Our founding fathers clearly spelled out our absolute right to bear arms for our defense. And some 60 million Americans do it responsibly every day to our benefit. Our elected officials should be addressing the issues of those few who break the laws already in place, not attacking the rights of the majority who don’t.

Steve Hall
North Fork, CA

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