• Gun measures that make sense
    January 29,2013

    Gun measures that make sense

    Immediately after the Newtown massacre, the National Rifle Association originally made a plea for our legislators not to rush to any hasty conclusions before considering the passage of any gun safety legislation. Within a week they came out with their recommendations.

    I’m not sure how they arrived at their “magical thinking,” but their response of arming teachers and putting armed guards in all schools was less than helpful. Their statement disregarded all evidence to the contrary; totally denying the fact that due to our glut of firearms, the United States has by far the highest homicide and suicide rate due to gun violence (more than 30,000 deaths annually) than any other civilized country in the world with reasonable gun safety laws. Statistics also show that schools are actually very safe environs, with far more gun fatalities on the streets of our cities and in our own homes. We would have a greater impact in decreasing gun fatalities by having armed guards assigned to our homes.

    Unfortunately, the White House is considering making federal dollars available to schools that want to hire police officers. With all our concerns over our national debt, this would be a huge financial mistake for very little, if any, real security gains. If a local community feels that it is necessary, it should vote to fund it; this should not be a responsibility of the federal government. Send email to your representative and senators asking them to, at the very least:

    — Ban assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines.

    — Require a “universal” criminal background check for every gun sold in America.

    — Make gun trafficking a federal crime, with real penalties for “straw purchasers” (those who arm criminals).

    Where are my Republican and Libertarian friends to help prevent our fellow Democrats from taxing and spending?

    Dr. Paul Manganiell

    Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

    Lebanon, N.H.

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