Letter writer John Wyninger dismisses the effectiveness of limiting gun access with the observation "if only" all violence could be easily erased by gun control ("Mall violence surprising but gun control no remedy," Jan. 28). But it can. Well, not all violence, but certainly gun violence could easily be considerably reduced by careful background checks.
This has been proved by Japan where a thorough and careful background check is required of anyone wanting to own a gun. Japan had just three gun deaths last year! The United States had over 30,000. Now, it is true that their background check is thorough, careful and exhaustive, and I expect that maybe 50 percent of Americans would fail it. But to the tens of thousands who would not have to suffer death and the hundreds of thousands of their relatives, friends and loved ones who would not have to suffer the agonies of their loss, I am certain that it would be worth it.
The background check would eliminate gun ownership by alcoholics, criminals, wife beaters, people with mental issues and those with a record of violence like road rage. Why would anyone want these people to own guns?
The NRA actively fights for just these kind of crazies to be allowed to not only own guns but any kind of gun, any number of guns and to carry them anywhere — like bars, supermarkets, convenience stores, and to church, malls and schools. If they had their way, everyone would be required to carry guns everywhere!
If this is not insanity then I don't know what is. It should be obvious to even the simplest simpleton that if you restrict gun ownership to responsible people who are willing to subject themselves to a thorough background check, take lessons and a test, then any sane, intelligent person should be happy to undergo such a screening. Especially as it would weed out the crazies, and you, your family, friends and loved ones would be safer.
Foolish statements such as, "the more guns there are, the safer we are" or "only criminals will have guns," or "guns don't kill, people kill" are all stupid platitudes that have absolutely no basis in fact. That has been proved quite convincingly by Japan with just three gun deaths last year.
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