Letter: Thoughts on reducing gun violence

To the editor:

While Rick Sirvint spends time and too many words looking for the answer to what “causes gun violence” in this country, it would seem worthwhile looking for some practical ways to cut down the terrible gun massacres that are becoming so prevalent here.

In my view, the article is also misleading because it implies that nothing can be done until the “causes” are found. Knowing the “cause” for something does not necessarily lead to a change in behavior. And we are, notably, the only Western country that can “boast” of so many slayings within a short period of time.

Meanwhile we can require universal background checks; limit high capacity magazines; “straw” gun purchasers should be convicted; convicted felons must not own guns; those convicted of domestic violence must not own guns.

This would be a start, yet in no way a threat to the Second Amendment or as the NRA “translates it,” taking away someone’s right to own a gun. The above list does not infringe on any reasonable person’s right to buy a gun. Polls have shown that an overwhelming number of citizens including the majority of NRA members support a universal background check.

Let me repeat — finding ways to lessen these massacres by guns being in the wrong hands does not rely on taking away Second Amendment rights. It does ensure that ordinary citizens need not be terrified about those who legitimately own guns as well as feeling safer because those who should not have guns actually will not have them.

Gun “violence” can be reduced with changes with the above mandates even while the “causes” may still be unknown.

Helen Altman


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