Letter: Listening to Victims of Gun Violence
To the Editor:
Having just attended the vigil in Hanover for the Newtown, Conn., victims, gun control is uppermost on my mind. Mark Kelly, astronaut and husband of Gabby Gifford, gave a speech at Bard College graduation. Regarding gun control, he said, “What we have been lacking is someone with the courage to not choose sides on this issue, but to choose a new path. ... Gabby and I represent the majority of Americans who believe in sensible solutions, like background checks that will help to keep us safer but don’t infringe on anybody’s right, like yours and mine, to own a gun if you want to.” He criticized the National Rifle Association for obstructing gun-control legislation, pointing out that the organization once advocated for gun safety and the “proud tradition of hunting,” but now mostly stands for gun manufacturers. He added that he and Gabby are longtime gun owners with a “strong tradition of guns” in their lives.
For two people whose lives have been greatly altered by gun violence, these are sound and thoughtful words. I hope NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre reads them and pays attention. Who needs gun magazines that are meant for military use?