I grew up in the Catskill Mountains where deer hunting was legal at restricted times. While real or decorative “heads” are now on the wall of every HGTV design show, I saw the real thing in homes in the ‘60s. Some people actually ate what they killed. I spit out my first bite of venison – I was only 10.
The National Rifle Association is insisting on maintaining people’s rights to buy guns and ammunition on line, even while the average person is losing their right to safely go themselves or take their family to the movies.
I don’t want to rehash the horrible news about the events that took place in Aurora, Colorado the other day. But I do want to discuss some of the immediate and long term effects of this event, and what I think we need to do.
Sunday, we were out for a walk in Manhattan, and noticed that there were police officers in front of our local movie theater. Mayor Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Kelly have ordered them to be in front of every theater in New York City that is showing the new Batman film in reaction to the shootings in Aurora. Is it mere symbolism, or is it a necessary precaution?
It’s no secret that I am not a big fan of Mayor Bloomberg. However, in a column that appeared in today’s New York Daily News, he made some points about gun control that I want to share them with you. A leader in the fight to prevent guns, purchased legally in other states, from reaching the streets of New York, he wrote that the vast majority of Americans, both Republicans and Democrats and even a majority of NRA members now share that point of view.
He wants to strengthen the laws that require background checks when guns are sold at retail establishments. To buy a gun on line, all one has to do is state that they are of legal age and that they are neither a convicted felon nor suffering from some mental instability that would make it unsafe for them to own a weapon.
OK, does that mean I can walk right out of the psych ward at Bellevue and order a gun on the internet? Yes, it does. Does that mean I can call an 800 number or e-mail somebody and meet a gun seller in a parking lot somewhere? Yes, it does. As Brian Rossen reported in February on NBC (a story which was repeated this week), it means just that.
I understand that the Second Amendment is somewhat vague on the right to bear arms, but what part of “a well regulated militia” includes the right of an individual to own a semi automatic 9mm Glock handgun. It is time that The NRA realizes that it is no longer 1781 when the Second Amendment was enacted. The right to bear arms must be tempered to consider the rights of all people to live their lives without the danger of a madman like James Holmes walking into a movie theater and changing our worlds forever.
Less than 2% of the population of the United States belongs to the NRA. Michelle and Ann, if your husbands won’t stand up to the NRA, maybe you’ll have the guts to. It could be your children.
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