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Forum, Sept. 6: We should enforce gun laws that are already on the books

Published: 9/5/2019 10:00:15 PM
Modified: 9/5/2019 10:00:05 PM
We should enforce gun laws that are already on the books

As usual, the cry for “gun control” gets louder every time there’s an incident. New laws are proposed, and the beat goes on. Here’s a different idea.

There are over 23,000 gun control laws on the books in this country. Some are uselessly vague or duplicative of statutes already on the books. Instead of new laws, why don’t we enforce the laws already on the books?

For instance, almost no one is charged with lying on the Form 4473 filed for a background check. Or, if someone is arrested with a gun while committing a drug felony, the gun charges are usually dropped in plea bargaining.

Look at the recent shootings in Philadelphia. The alleged shooter was a convicted felon with a long rap sheet. There was no legal way he could buy a gun. Yet he acquired one. And this is the weakness of gun control laws. Besides laws being only rarely enforced, guns are easy to acquire illegally on the streets.

During the Clinton administration, a trial program was set up in Richmond, Va., called Project Exile. The program was basically this: Use a gun, go to jail. Sentences were harsher and there were no plea bargains.

Results? The murder rate declined, and drug dealers became afraid to carry. Law-abiding citizens were not forced to give up rights to power-hungry bureaucrats.

Innocent people don’t need a further abrogation of their rights. Use the current laws to remove the lawbreakers from the scene.



Canada’s experience proves that regulating firearms works

Two sentences into Alan Tanenbaum’s dismissal of gun control legislation (“Gun control laws have done, and will do, nothing to help,” Aug. 28), I knew what would follow: You see, there’s this place that has strict gun control laws and there was still a big shoot-’em-up there. He references the attack on six Philadelphia police officers.

In a sense, he is right. What use are a city’s gun laws if one can drive half an hour outside city limits and buy a rapid-fire rifle or pistol at a gun show with scarcely a question asked?

What is needed is national legislation, as in Canada, where my northern hunting buddies confess that their strict omni-provincial regulations are a bit of a drag; I haven’t, though, heard any say that he or she would change them in order to have our mass shootings.

Gun regulations don’t work? Check Canada’s massacre rate against ours.

Next question.


Newbury, Vt.

Harrison Ford climate change speech gets a critical review

There’s a video on YouTube in which Harrison Ford makes an impassioned speech. It’s about climate change. He considers it to be the greatest moral crisis of our lives. Many other famous public figures express similar outrage on the subject.

Generally, they are a very wealthy group. They live lives of luxury, and have the “carbon footprint” to match. Their sheer audacity, arrogance, and smug, sanctimonious hypocrisy borders on insanity. Ford proves that he can make a very dramatic speech. He is a good actor. He should stick to making movies.



This year’s Norwich Parade will celebrate families

The Norwich Parade will take place on Sept. 21, from 10-11 a.m. This year the parade precedes a fun day on the green with the theme, “We Are Family.”

We’ll have “Art in the Park,” music all day, food for sale by the Norwich Lions Club and displays by local organizations supporting the theme “Sustainable Norwich.” Bring your lawn chairs and picnic blankets for a celebration of all our families. And come march in the parade. It’s open to all!

Contact Rose Swift Smith,, to register for the parade lineup.



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