Gun Restrictions to Protect Schools, General Public Are Desperately Needed

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“Can we all get along?”

Rodney King uttered those words in 1992 after being brutally beaten in California. I am still waiting for an answer.

Our judicial system is so broken that it is going to be very hard to address the violent shootings by the 18-year-old man in Uvalde, Texas. He shot and killed 19 elementary school students and two teachers with an AR-15 assault semi-automatic rifle. And he shot them randomly – some in their faces, according to the doctor who took care of the victims as they arrived at his hospital. Parents identified them with their DNA to be sure of their identity.

Those innocent children will never know what it is to grow to adulthood. After Sandy Hook, we thought it would never happen again, but then came Parkland. There were other shootings as well, so many that I have lost count. Don’t we value our children enough to protect them against having to worry about the safety of going to school each day, a place that we used to be able to count on as being safe?  Are people going to shy away from teaching because they regard it as a hazardous job? Are guns more valuable to some than children’s lives? Any attempt to rein in the gun violence only seems to produce more gun owners.
I fully respect the right of people to own a weapon for hunting or target practice. I grew up on a farm in Alabama. My father taught his sons how to shoot rifles at an early age so they could complement our diet with meat. But that was the only reason for using a firearm.

People who argue that the Second Amendment gives them the right to bear arms, forgetting that militia is part of that written amendment. We don’t have legal militias who need a weapon in their home to respond to a call to arms anymore.  What we need are laws that require safety restrictions on how to use them. Is that asking too much?

Phyllis Hoenig

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