Commentary: Gun violence demands immediate action

By Dan Cannon

In large part, I focus my attention on local matters of import.

However, the recent carnage by gun(s) in El Paso and Dayton has seized my attention and should seize everyone’s attention. Thirty-one innocent people dead and dozens wounded by two deranged gunmen.

By all accounts, police action was swift, especially in Dayton where the gunman was dead within 30 seconds of opening fire. But within that short time frame the gunman killed 9 and wounded more than two dozen others. While the toll was worse/higher in El Paso (22 dead with further dozens wounded), that one person in Dayton could injure or kill over 30 people in 20 seconds screams “WARNING.”

The Dayton gunman was using an military-style semiautomatic weapon with a massive 100 round magazine. As the Dayton Chief of Police said, having civilians with access to such military-style hardware is “problematic” and should be a WARNING for all of us.

President Trump correctly identified the gunmen as individuals with mental problems. Certainly anyone who carries out mass murder is emotionally/mentally deranged by all normal standards. But in the current state of our health care system, even identifying much less successfully treating such individuals in a timely fashion is virtually impossible, especially in the short term.

So what should be done RIGHT NOW? Clearly there must be further common sense regulation of the right to “bear arms”.

Common sense dictates background checks for all weapon purchases.

Common sense dictates that the background checks have a reasonable amount of time (say a week) to be completed as opposed to the current one day time limit.

Common sense dictates that “Red Flag” laws be in place in all states to keep firearms out of potentially unstable people’s hands (at least on a temporary basis).

Common sense dictates that no civilians be allowed to purchase high velocity/military grade ammunition or high capacity magazines/clips holding more than 10 shells.

Common sense dictates that all devices that increase/augment the rate of fire of any semiautomatic weapon be illegal.

Common sense dictates that there should be uniform and required firearms/weapons training for anyone who purchases a weapon.

For goodness sake, the little kids murdered at Sandy Hook and the older kids killed at MS Douglass (Floria) High School as well as everyone killed and injured in El Paso and Dayton deserve not just our compassion but at least these common sense action(s) to try to thwart further senseless death by gun(s).

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