Tracy Winder: We need change, not more ineffective laws |

Tracy Winder: We need change, not more ineffective laws

To the editor:

There has been little in the way of news coverage about the recent mall shooting in Portland, Oregon.

Perhaps it is because the circumstances don’t bolster the arguments for more gun-control. The shooter’s weapon was stolen; the shooter’s high-capacity magazine caused his gun to jam (a common event which has actually saved lives in 3 multiple-murders, including Columbine); and had the executioner’s gun not jammed which led to the killer committing suicide, an ordinary citizen with a legal concealed carry permit was armed, ready, and in a position to shoot the attacker.

Gun-control advocates in the media would prefer you didn’t learn how well legal concealed carry can prevent and stop crime.

Fortunately for the Oregon man who carried his ordinarily-legal firearm into a private ‘gun-free zone’ (just like the Aurora theater), he did not have to use his weapon. He would have been crucified by the media for his heroism, and possibly punished through the legal system for defending innocent human life.

In this case, as in so many others, mandating registration of all guns, creating more ‘gun-free zones’, closing gun-show loopholes, longer waiting periods for guns sales, more stringent background checks, banning private sales, more restricted concealed carry laws, banning assault weapons/ high-capacity magazines – none of these measures would have affected the probability or the outcome of this event. These are not solutions to a school or public safety problem; they are simply blatant use of public fear to promote more unnecessary gun regulation.

And lest we forget, our Department of Justice found that the former federal ban on high-capacity magazines and assault weapons between 1994 and 2004 had no statistical impact on gun violence, including the number or lethality of mass shootings.

Germany – a country that has some of the strictest gun-control laws in the world, including psychological screening and a one-year’s wait to buy a gun – has been the site of 3 of the worst multiple-victim, K-12 public school shootings in the world, all in the last decade, and all in ‘gun-free zones’.

Change is overdue; but enacting more unsuccessful gun regulations on top of existing, faulty legislation will avail us nothing but more heartache.

Among all the self-serving, agenda-driven politicians in Washington (and Colorado) – those who are loathe to acknowledge that our laws are the underlying cause of school massacres – one man stands alone: Back in July of 2011, Ron Paul, a U.S. House Representative from Texas and a pediatrician by profession, introduced legislation to repeal the 1990 Gun-Free School Zones Act. Predictably, however, his bill had no cosponsors and languished in committee.

Dangerous, governmental ‘gun-free zone’ mandates must be repealed. Creating laws that leave schools with no adequate options to protect themselves affordably is simply unconscionable, and there is blood on the hands of our legislators.

Individual school districts and local governmental jurisdictions should have control of security measures that they can afford and will work best in their area.

Tracy Winder

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