Letters and Opinion

Guns laws work

January 26, 2013

I thought it would be impossible to write about gun laws after the Newtown tragedy and not talk about the bulbous magazine clips that allow a sane or insane person to fire hundreds of rounds from an automatic weapon in seconds, but Peter Rusthoven [Jan. 7] managed to do the impossible.

Those voluminous magazine clips in a rapid-fire assault rifle were responsible for the deaths of children and teachers in Newtown and would have caused even more deaths in the Colorado theater attack. Thankfully, that shooter’s weapon jammed.

As for his stated belief that “other evidence” supposedly shows that “gun control laws are ineffective,” he should examine the experience in Australia, where in 1996 a mass killing provoked outrage. Australia enacted a 28-day waiting period before one can buy a gun and imposed a ban on semi-automatic weapons. There have been no mass killings since this law was passed, and homicides and suicides are down 50 percent.

In Bogota, Colombia, the mayor banned citizens from carrying weapons on streets, in their cars and in public places, and the murder rate has dropped 50 percent.

I have been to countries where the threat of violence is so common that armed guards can be found almost everywhere. It did not make me feel safer; rather, it was a reminder of the unsafe territory.
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Jerry Williams

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