Not surprisingly, my letter in support of an assault weapons ban seems to have upset a regular letter writer.
In response, he parrots the tired NRA line that “guns don’t kill, people kill.” What a crock. He talks like an AR-15 is a pencil, coffee pot, or some other utensil that is harmless unless wielded by an insane person. How can any sane person believe that a potential mass killer can do as much damage with a knife or pistol as he could with an assault rifle? Yes, it takes a person to pull the trigger, but if the trigger is attached to an assault rifle, a lot more people are going to die. That is just a fact.
I get it. You like your AR-15. It’s probably fun to shoot. But is the right to own an assault rifle more important than protecting the lives of innocent people? Personally, I cannot think of any overriding need to own an assault rifle that makes the lives of innocent people expendable. Contrary to the writer’s assertion, shooting feral pigs hardly qualifies as more important than saving lives.
When our founding fathers wrote the Second Amendment, do you really think they envisioned assault rifles in modern society? The Second Amendment reads in full - “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” What the writer and others conveniently choose to ignore is that whole amendment is couched in the need for an armed militia. That made sense at a time when there were Indian conflicts on the frontier and militias were necessary for the protection of communities. Militias played an important role in the War of 1812 because we did not have a significant standing army. We no longer have Indian wars and we now have one of the largest standing armies in the world, so militias are obsolete. Does that mean the Second Amendment is outdated? Why didn’t the founding fathers leave out the first part and simply write “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed”? Could it be that they envisioned a day when militias would no longer be needed and the right to bear arms should not be absolute?
We have a gun problem in America. We can either do something about it, or let the NRA continue to brainwash its members and buy politicians.
Sadly, my money is on the NRA.