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Letter to the editor: Guns and safety

“The debate about regulating gun ownership goes on and on”

The debate about regulating gun ownership goes on and on, and the more heated it gets, the less likely it becomes that there will ever be a resolution. Here are a few suggestions for “background checks”, “second amendment freedoms”, and “assault weapons ban” that could form a basis for agreement.

“Background checks” – When someone wants to buy a gun, instead of relying on complicated, expensive, security investigations (and creating a vast government bureaucracy of paperwork and enforcement officials), or trusting in “expert opinions” by “designated” psychiatrists on a person’s mental health (which can often vary from expert to expert), there are really only two questions that need to be answered:

1. Have you ever fantasized about being judge, jury and executioner and holding the power of life and death in your hands?

2. Have you ever acted on this fantasy?

Answering “no” to either question would be an outright lie (unless they hunt for food, and only shoot something that they intend to eat), since they are seeking to buy a gun. Justifying a “yes” answer by the fear of rising crime rates or claiming the right to protect themselves from others who both fantasize and act on this same dementia is perpetuating the spiraling violence caused by guns – nobody wants to be the last person on the block to own a weapon. The only solution is to reclaim the equality of individuals that has been obliterated by the ownership of lethal weapons, whether that means everyone owning a gun, or nobody owning a gun. It is the same impasse to global disarmament – either every country should have nuclear weapons or no country should have them. Having the “freedom” to arm yourself takes away the freedom of others to live in a safe environment.

“Second amendment freedoms” – Perhaps there is a possibility of creating a “gun-free” zone and a “mandatory-vigilante” zone by relocating the security fence separating Mexico from the United States to surround the border of Texas, and anyone that demands the freedom to own guns can relocate to the Lone Star State, while the rest of the continent can direct local police forces to lock up their own guns and then ask peacefully for the population to freely turn in their weapons, without penalty. After a specified time, the military would have to be given a mandate to collect the remaining weapons (even if they have to pry them from the cold dead fingers of their owners). The brave men and women in the military have been busy disarming rebels in other countries around the world, and I think that it is only right that we should reap the benefits of their efforts here at home. After all we employ them.

“Assault weapons ban” – As for the manufacture and sale of “assault” weapons, a hunter uses a gun like a fisherman uses a fishing rod, and it’s not that hard to distinguish a fishing rod from a boat load of dynamite, even though they can both be used for fishing!

Blair Hamilton,

Port Hardy

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