Letter: Yet Another Mass Shooting
To the Editor:
How many gun tragedies in America will it take to move our elected officials to action? We’ve seen the images from Colorado, Virginia, Texas, Arizona, Connecticut and other states. Now we see the shadow of the Washington Monument behind the latest mass shooting. How much blood spilled by enraged or insane gunmen will be enough?
Two courageous lawmakers in Colorado dared to endorse tough new gun regulations and background checks. They paid for it, thanks to the National Rifle Association and local fears stoked about the federal government. These state senators were recalled. The governor of Missouri vetoed a bill that would have made it a crime to enforce federal gun laws in that state. His veto was upheld by a margin of one vote. Too many legislators believe that federal laws can be nullified when they conflict with local tradition. Is the governor the next target of a recall vote?
There are common-sense laws under consideration in many states to help reduce senseless crime at the hands of those who would be prohibited from possessing, owning or selling guns to others. These laws are becoming too hot to handle for many elected officials who fear for their political future. Removing such officials has become the mission of the NRA, as evidenced by the millions of dollars the organization pumps into states considering recalls or special elections.
It takes only a few months for us to put gun-related tragedies behind us but they keep reappearing like a metastasizing cancer. And for some, fear of our federal government appears greater than the fear of repeated gun tragedies. How can we learn about another mass shooting and not say more than, “How many this time?”
Our state and federal officials need to hear from us. They pay attention to letters and emails from voters, despite the special interest groups, because we are the ones who elect them.