What's More Important?  Our Children or Our Guns?
 
  
Is unregulated gun ownership worth the lives of our children?

Where do we draw the line?  The second amendment does not give us the right to own unlicensed machine guns or rocket propelled grenades.  Nor should it give us the right to own unlicensed assault weapons or high capacity ammunition magazines.

The United States seems to lead the world in the frequency of mass shootings.  Is this the kind of leadership we want?  It's a travesty.  Furthermore, mass shootings in our country are occurring more often.  How long must we allow this trend to continue?

There are no easy answers.  If there were, this problem would have already been solved.

Simply relying on better law enforcement will not work.  There are not enough detectives or FBI agents to investigate each and every individual suspected of being a threat.  More school counselors would help, so would smaller class size and less broken homes.

While we may never completely eliminate such incidents from happening, there are ways to make them less deadly.  Just as we have installed guard rails and rumble strips to reduce highway fatalities, we can take steps to engineer solutions which do not rely solely on human factors.

Easy to obtain assualt weapons, once banned under U.S. law, are a common thread connecting many of the deadliest shootings that have occurred in the past few years. The shooter at the school in Parkland, Florida, purchased his military-style assault weapon legally.  So did the man who shot over 400 people in Las Vegas in October 2017.  So did the man who gunned down 49 people at Orlando's Pulse nightclub.  So did the man who gunned down 26 worshippers at a church in Texas in November, 2017.

In 1994 the United States imposed a ban on assault weapons.  Compared with the 10 year period before the ban, the number of gun massacres during the ban fell by 37% and the number of people dying from them decreased by 43%.  In the 10 year period after the ban expired, the number of gun massacres increased by 183% and masscre death shot up 239%.¹

Restricting the capacity of unlicensed ammunition magazines is probably the most important legislative measure our elected officials can take to reduce the deadliness of mass shootings.

If you believe
unregulated gun ownership is worth the lives of our children, then by all means join the NRA and support the Republican Party.  If, on the otherhand, you treasure the lives of our children and grandchildren and wish to significantly reduce the carnage of mass shootings in our nation, join usVote Democratic.

¹Louis Klarevas, Rampage Nation:  Securing Our Nation from Mass Shootings, Pormetheus Books, Amherst, New York, 2016.