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Law-abiding gun owners are not the problem

11:15 AM EST, January 3, 2013

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I would like to correct a few misconceptions in Ron Meservey's recent letter about gun control ("Hunters and target shooters don't need assault rifles," Dec. 31).

While the school shooting in Newtown, Conn., was the act of a disturbed individual, and I do not condone such behavior by anyone, the fact that politicians are once again crying for more gun laws is not the answer to this problem.

This country has more gun laws than it knows what to do with. What we need is not gun control but control of criminals and crime.

Why do we blame crimes such as this on inanimate objects? The blame should properly be put on the person. If people like the elementary school shooter were prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law rather than have their charges plea bargained down to result in less prison time, maybe we could get a handle on crime in this country.

Mr. Meservey misses the point when it comes to the Second Amendment and the Founding Fathers' intent in including it in the Bill of Rights. I take offense when people start telling me that some portion of the Constitution they don't feel comfortable with should be repealed.

The whole reason this amendment was included in the Constitution was to give citizens a way of holding an overreaching government to account. The Second Amendment cements all the other rights and privileges that we enjoy in this country.

A lot of good people have given their lives to protect and defend our Constitution. Let's not dishonor their memory by simply throwing away the parts we feel are no longer valid.

If people want to kill each other they will find a way to do so, if not with a gun, then by some other means. Do not penalize those of us who use our guns for legitimate and legal purposes. We are not the problem.

Tim Flaherty, Bel Air

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