LETTER TO THE EDITOR: It's time for action on assault weapons

Saturday, December 15, 2012 | 3:29 p.m. CST

Once again we are watching the news about someone killing kids with a semi-automatic weapon.

How many more times will we have to watch this kind of story before Congress enacts an effective ban on assault weapons? How many more children have to die before Congress provides adequate funding so that existing laws regarding background checks on purchases of guns are effective? How many more people have to die before kits to convert single shot weapons to semi-automatic weapons are prohibited?

How many more?

Linda Kaiser is a Columbia resident.


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Mark Foecking December 15, 2012 | 4:18 p.m.

"kits to convert single shot weapons to semi-automatic weapons"

Actually there are no such kits. I think the author is confusing kits that convert certain semi-automatic weapons to fully automatic weapons. These are largely illegal, and irrelevant. Converted weapons are virtually never used in crimes of any sort.

The Connecticut shooter used a couple of semi-automatic pistols, not "assault weapons". They're weapons similar to what a policeman carries. Please get your facts straight before writing a letter like this.


(Report Comment)
hank ottinger December 15, 2012 | 5:37 p.m.

Well, DK, your note implies we give a pass to semi-automatic pistols because cops use them and because they're not "assault weapons." Yet weren't these weapons covered in the Clinton administration's assault weapons ban?
That aside, the semi-automatic weapons were used to assault and kill 28 of our fellow citizens. Aside from cops and the military, why should they be allowed? People going to blow away a deer with such a weapon? If so, they should have their hunting licenses revoked. And if it cuts into their so-called "target practice" pursuits, so be it.

(Report Comment)
Michael Williams December 15, 2012 | 5:48 p.m.

This article is called "bear shaving."

History has shown quite adequately that you cannot stop a person (who has the element of surprise) willing to die with their carnage or for their cause, e.g., WWII, terrorists, this guy, etc.

You can make it more difficult, causing them to search for another avenue, and you can minimize the damage after it starts....but that's about it.

The weapon-of-choice has nothing to do with it.

(Report Comment)
frank christian December 15, 2012 | 10:32 p.m.

hank -We know your answer,and as well, your intent and agenda. Why would you not even consider anything, regarding the safety, or well being, of an individual American citizen? Should the terrorized citizen stay close to, or in the home, hoping that "police" with their authorized weapons arrive in time to save them? You know as well as uneducated I, that those 400 hundred, hacked to death with machetes in Rwanda were killed by their government, the only ones holding machetes. It has become a sage saying, "the 2nd amendment ain't about deer hunting!" Limit it to the secular and your plans for America are still, "unholy".

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Mark Foecking December 16, 2012 | 4:41 a.m.

hank ottinger wrote:

"People going to blow away a deer with such a weapon?"

I'd hope no one would hunt a deer with a 9 mm pistol. It would be inhumane - you'd likely have to shoot the deer several times unless you got very lucky the first time.

Semi-automatic pistols were not covered under the Brady ban. Certain semi-automatic rifles were, and the criteria for what constituted an "assault weapon" had little to do with how actually deadly they were. That's why it was repealed.

Keeping guns away from the mentally ill is what we should be talking about here. If the mother of the shooter had kept her guns locked up when he was around, it would have been a lot harder for him to get them.


(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking December 16, 2012 | 4:45 a.m.

A quick correction - magazine size was covered under the Brady bill. You could have no more than 10 rounds/magazine. However, there was no limit on the amount of magazines you could have, so it really didn't matter.


(Report Comment)
Corey Parks December 16, 2012 | 8:52 p.m.

hank ottinger wrote:

"People going to blow away a deer with such a weapon?"

Well yes actually people do go hunting with handguns.

(Report Comment)
J Karl Miller December 17, 2012 | 7:20 p.m.

When a gun loads itself and goes out among the public to initite killing--we have a gun problem. Since that phenomenon does not exist-we have a people problem.

(Report Comment)
John Schultz December 18, 2012 | 9:57 a.m.

Hank, I believe the rifle that Lanza used is a smaller caliber than most people use to deer. It's been a while since I've done so and seen what people use, but I'll wager that more people use semi-auto rifles than bolt action, shot at a time, weapons. Michael may be able to tell me if my guess is accurate.

(Report Comment)

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