Rather than expressing sympathies or offering prayers for the Tucson victims and their families, Bonnie Erbe in her guest commentary titled “Gun control - if not now, then when?” (online at www.eastvalleytribune.com) lists six previous mass shootings as evidence that law-abiding Arizonians deserve less freedom.
The somber reality, however, is that evil or deranged criminals will not obey new gun-control laws any more than they obey existing laws against murder. By definition, criminals break laws. Furthermore, Erbe’s examples actually demonstrate that criminals often seek out “gun-free zones!”
Think about it:
• Columbine 1999: legally “gun-free” high school.
• Fort Worth, Texas 1999: teenage church concert where most attendees were too young to legally carry a weapon.
• Washington sniper 2002: D.C. is the definition of “gun-free” with the harshest “gun-control” laws in the country.
• Nickel Mines, Pa. 2006: legally “gun-free” Amish school (also note the refusal of the Amish to use violence even in self-defense).
• Virginia Tech 2007: legally “gun-free” university.
• Fort Hood, Texas 2009: believe it or not, legally “gun-free” U.S. military installation (with limited exceptions like military police).
But more importantly, why do many politicians and D.C. commentators like Ms. Erbe politicize tragedy?
Instead of exploiting the heinous Tucson mass-murder as an excuse to restrict the freedoms of the law-abiding, we should all be praying for the victims and their families.
The fact that this deranged killer struck so close to home should make us even more aware that securing the most effective means of defending our own families is not just our right but our social responsibility.
Russell Scherer, Chandler