2013-04-18 / Letters

Standing up and being counted

To the Editor:

I agree with James Anderson’s comment in letters to the editor on April 11 that the “Founders of this great country understood human nature very clearly.”

The Founders knew about criminals, mental illness, violence, and terrorists. The Founders knew unregulated gun ownership would be problematic and that is why they put the words “well regulated” up front in the Second Amendment’s single sentence. If it was not of concern, they could have just said, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, but they didn’t, they said more.

I believe in gun ownership, but I also believe in regulation of gun ownership. Gun ownership should be respected but look what has happened without any basic regulation: thirty thousand deaths and seventy thousand gun-related injuries per year, carnage in theatres and malls, school massacres, drive-by shootings, unrelenting crime and crimes of passion, and on and on. We all understand and remember the horrors of Newtown and Columbine and so many others. Quoting Edmund Burke’s concern about tyranny, James, supporting gun ownership, wrote “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” It is not, however, the memory of tyranny; it is the memory of heinous acts of crime and murder of innocent people, especially children, that requires us to act now to regulate gun ownership so that these crimes are not repeated.

Tyranny is not the risk we face today. Today, guns in the hands of irresponsible people constitute a risk to all of society. Regulation is not something that can be ignored because regulation is included in, and a requirement of, the Second Amendment. Regulation and the right to bear can and must coexist and only through this co-existence will we have a better and safer future for all.

Tom Fleming
S. Lee Point Rd.
Suttons Bay

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