Updated: March 27, 2013 6:07AM
Some still deny Newtown shows need for sensible gun laws
In my letter to the editor Jan. 21, I attempted to point out how deeply the Sandy Hook assault weapon massacre of 20 babies and their six courageous teachers affected me and how the happiness in Newtown, Conn., was destroyed by a sick young man wielding an AR-15 assault weapon loaded with a mega-magazine in just a few short seconds.
As a grandfather of a 6-year-old grandson, I can’t imagine — and pray to God I never have to suffer — the painful agony and horror the father of one of the murdered babies described and suffered while identifying his dead baby son’s body with a .223-caliber bullet hole in his forehead.
Sadly, not all Courier-News readers see the Newtown massacre as a wake-up call for sensible gun regulation. A minority of gun owners perceive any attempt at gun regulation — such as federally mandated background checks, closing gun show loopholes, ending “straw” purchases or eliminating the large-capacity magazines — as an attack on their Second Amendment rights. They see this even though our Supreme Court has ruled Americans have the right to own firearms for protecting their homes, and as President Obama has stated, “none of (his) purposed regulation measures are intended to stop law-abiding Americans from protecting themselves, or from enjoying hunting and target shooting.”
On Feb. 3, Patrick McNamara responded to my letter and gives Courier-News readers the gun manufacturing lobby/NRA’s talking points. He writes that the semiautomatic AR-15 used in the Newtown massacre “is not an assault weapon” because it’s not “fully automatic.” So by this talking point, the semiautomatic M-14 that I and other Marines carried in Vietnam was not an assault weapon; apparently, my commanders back then and Gen. Stanley McChrystal — who called the AR-15 an “assault weapon” a week or two ago — didn’t know what they were talking about. He goes on to write that the 30-round magazine used in the Newtown murders is not a “mega-magazine.” Right, it’s only a “HIGH CAPACITY” magazine; sorry, a stupid mistake on my part. McNamara also writes the .223-caliber round is not a “high-powered round” — but police officers say the .223-round is designed to penetrate their bullet-proof vests?
McNamara goes on to write that the AR-15 used in the Aurora and Newtown massacres is mainly used for shooting “varmints and target practice.” I’m sure my neighbors can hardly wait for someone to break out their AR-15 and start blasting away when a coyote strays into our neighborhood.
McNamara ends his letter by quoting part of Thomas Jefferson’s “Tree Of Liberty” letter in regard to “resistance and taking up arms,” McNamara omits the part where Jefferson also writes, “The people cannot be all, and always, well-informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive.”
God help us please — the “Tree Of Liberty” must not be nourished with the blood of our babies again. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.