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LETTER: New laws won’t stop firearms tragedies

To the Editor:

As sad and horrible as Friday, December 14 was in Newtown, Conn., new firearms laws will not stop this kind of tragedy from happening again.

If the government takes away our right to defend ourselves, then only the mentally disturbed and criminals will have firearms, and more of this will happen. I prefer to call police to tell them that I have a criminal in custody at my home or place of work, rather than have someone find my body and have to call the police to identify me. Laws protect no one if the predator does not obey the law.

If the government takes away our right to own semi-automatic firearms, then we will be left to defend ourselves with a revolver, which is not a sufficient defense in close quarters against a criminal armed with a semi-automatic firearm. (By the way, fully automatic firearms are already illegal to own without a federal permit.) No laws would have protected the school full of children from the deeply disturbed young man on Friday, Dec. 14.

Every school in the country should have a well-trained armed person to defend the teachers and students. This does not have to be a costly endeavor; I’m sure there are many well-trained retired persons (including teachers) willing to do the job for free.

Laws will never protect a so-called “safe zone”, as laws only apply to the honest person who obeys the law. Other countries have removed firearms from it citizens, and it has not stopped meaningless acts of violence. Only a well-armed and well-trained citizen could have stopped what happened on Friday, Dec. 14. Law enforcement agencies cannot stop horrible acts—they are reactive, not proactive. All they can do is forensics.

Laws are not the answer. I personally think the video games are far worse. It is not the firearm; it is what is in the head of the person holding the firearm.

Firearm owners and firearm collectors are people who feel just as bad and are just as angry about what happened on Friday, Dec. 14 as everyone else. We care about our country and we love our children and grandchildren. Let’s not divide this country any more than it already is with more feel-good firearms laws that do not work.

Rise above Friday, Dec. 12 and protect our schools, but not with more firearms laws that accomplish nothing. Remember what Germany did before World War II. They took away firearms from the citizens, and 20 million people died. Fair warning: history can and often does repeat itself.

The price of living in a free society is that anyone can take your life if they are willing to forfeit theirs.

David Call and Martha Hurd-Call



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