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Letter to the Editor: Responding to ‘On the topic of gun laws’

To the Editor:

I’m writing in response to Mike Alalof’s letter concerning gun control in the June 6 edition of Mid Rivers Newsmagazine. He states that we should ban “any semi-automatic weapons that can hold a magazine.” 

We have seen attacks where people have used motor vehicles to run over large numbers of pedestrians, but I don’t see an outcry to ban cars and trucks. There have also been attacks on groups of people, using knives. Again, no call for a ban.

He goes on to call for all new and existing guns to be registered, have a yearly license tax and insurance coverage. And then he states that “mandatory federal prison time for anyone caught with any semi-automatic weapon” and that this “is not a confiscation program.” It sure sounds like confiscation to me.

In 2016, 38,658 people died from firearms related events; 59 percent of these were suicides. In that same year, 40,000 people were killed in car accidents. Of those, 10,497 were a result of driving drunk. 

Cars are registered, have a yearly [or semi-annual] license tax [we have to pay to renew them] and are covered by insurance. In addition, drivers have to prove their proficiency in order to get a license to drive, and they must renew that license periodically. In spite of these requirements, we still have more motor vehicle-related deaths than firearms deaths. I’ve heard no outcry to ban motor vehicles. I’ve heard no one push a movement to restrict the size of the gas tank to limit how many miles we can drive. The nearly 11,000 alcohol-related traffic deaths have not caused a ban on the sale of alcoholic beverages, or a limit to how many cans or bottles can be in the package you buy.

So why put all these additional restrictions on gun ownership? We don’t need more gun laws. We need to enforce those currently in place.

Dave Nichols

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