LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Gun restrictions save lives

Regarding Kevin Esslinger’s letter to the State News on June 27 titled, “Get facts straight,” in response to my June 23 letter, “NRA’s contribution to mass murders,” he stated, “that he could not recall a bump stock or high capacity magazine ever being arrested for a crime.” This statement echoes what NRA executive Wayne La Pierre has been rationalizing for years. “Guns do not kill people, people do.” People do? True, people that use these “accessories” that enable them to commit mass killings.

The recent mass killing at the Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland would have resulted in more than five journalists being killed if the killer was armed with more than a 12-gauge shotgun. Witness accounts stated that he had to reload and then hid under a desk after he ran out of ammunition. For those who are unaware, bump stocks and high-capacity magazines (more than 10 rounds) enable the shooter to fire an unlimited number of rounds in a very short period. Many states are beginning to pass legislation to ban bump stocks and high capacity magazines for public safety. Isn’t that called common-sense legislation?

Mass killings with high-capacity magazines have doubled over the last two decades as well as the death and injury count. Source: Crime by crime account from the Violence Policy Center in Washington D.C. Are we going to idly watch these mass killings with these add-on accessories potentially triple in the next two decades?

The late co-founder, William Ruger, Sr. of Strum-Ruger gun manufacturing company, told Tom Brokaw in 1992, “that he never meant for simple civilians to have his 20- or 30-round magazines because he believed that no honest man needed more than 10 rounds in any gun.” Thirty-round magazines were fashionable in the military in operation Desert Storm in 1991. We referred to them as banana clips by the way. Why would they be necessary for civilian use?

However, the NRA and their spokesman, Mr. La Pierre, continue to proclaim the second amendment means there should not be any gun restriction laws passed in the United States. However, Corporate America due to high profile shootings, and the lack of actions by lawmakers on gun control, have begun to ignore his plea by avoiding and/or getting out of the gun industry business claiming, “the lack of common sense gun control restrictions violates their policies.” Source: Delaware State News Associated Press article on page 12 on June 25.

Entertainment and fun seem to be the top two reasons gun advocates enjoy bump stocks and high-capacity magazines according to various internet articles on this topic.

Bill Clemens

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