Opinion: Letter to the Editor: Need Gun Safety Laws

Opinion: Letter to the Editor: Need Gun Safety Laws

I am very tired of the blood bath plaguing our nation because of the cowards in Congress who are beholding to the NRA. George Souza [Letter, “Clarifying Gun Isues, Mt. Vernon Gazette, Aug. 15] wants to defend the present state of matters.

The proof of a desperate need for gun control is in the numbers: 35,000 to 40,000 gun deaths a year; our traveling a path to 300 gun massacres this year; 250 to 300 million guns in the United States; and the most telling, a majority of the population who want a ban on assault weapons.

I don’t really care if Mr. Souza or others like him believe the label of “assault” is correct. If the man in Dayton could kill 9 people and wound 26 in the 13 seconds before the police shot him, then the lethality of the gun he used can be called an assault weapon. The 22 dead in the El Paso Walmart in time measured in minutes, not to mention with the killer’s admission of his targeting people of color, speaks volumes in favor of changing gun laws. Even more recently, six police officers were wounded in Philadelphia by a man who had a cache of weapons and ammunition.

NRA would have us believe its interpretation of the Second Amendment, but that interpretation lacks all resemblance to the truth. Universal background checks promote national safety and infringe on no one’s freedom. Universal registration of every single gun and owner promotes safety and is not an infringement on freedom. Legislating the safe storage of guns in homes or anywhere protects children and adults who don’t know the danger of a gun or how to handle it can keep those people from harming themselves and others. Demanding training and licensing of all gun users promotes safety and is no more than we expect from every vehicle driver for their use of a mode of transportation. Considering guns are intended to be lethal in their use, registration, licensing, and training are the least that should happen, although not all that should be done for common sense gun safety.

None of us should have to wonder whether we, our family members, our friends, our neighbors, or unknown people across the country will be killed or wounded because some person with a love affair with guns dreamed up a motive to attack places we go to everyday.

William Zaccagnino