I am a tree-hugging Democrat, but the hysteria about gun control is driving my adult children into the arms of the National Rifle Association ("Marylanders strongly support two gun control measures," Jan 14). They are so vocal about their opposition to gun control that I suggested they make money by writing for the NRA.

Meanwhile, my police officer friends are walking around with 15 bullets in each of the three magazines they carry concealed. You can buy 17-round handgun magazines for $500, and people are purchasing guns they fear may soon be prohibited.

There could be no better advertisement for the NRA, even where logic should prevail. The assault weapons ban was allowed to expire on the grounds it did not reduce crime.

While we would suffer more accidental injuries if everyone could carry concealed weapons, law-abiding citizens could visit downtown with confidence instead of fearing being confronted by a bad guy with a gun or knife, in which case it would be game over — just another Bambi in the headlights.

Whatever is legislated, the future is about the haves and have-nots — or about how many bullets you have remaining in your gun, that is. I still haven't figured out why America seems uniquely prepared to plunge back into the Wild West.

Theodore Houk

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