Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Guns in America

Since Sept. 11, 2001, 120,000 Americans have been killed by guns in non-terrorist attacks. That is 25 times more than have died in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Eight children are killed by guns in this country every day. Someone dies every 17 minutes from a gun-related incident. The NRA thinks concealed guns should be allowed on college campuses.

"Guns for Tots" in daycare next? Does no one care?

When the right to bear arms was engraved on the American psyche, so far as I know, the arms in question were clumsy, great blunderbusses you had to painstakingly reload by stuffing shot down the barrel, not high-velocity assault weapons. Who today actually needs, or can justify owning, an assault weapon? A hunter to shoot deer? Someone shooting clay pigeons? I don't think so.

Americans are so proud of their freedom. But this isn't a freedom—it's a tyranny of fear. The same subconscious fear that makes some of us choose to drive threatening-looking military assault vehicles called Hummers, feel the need to live in gated communities and (understandably) can hardly bear to let our children out of our sight.

Do we really want to live like this? Couldn't we begin to change things by a nationwide ban on the sale of deadly assault weapons to civilians?

Diana Fassino


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