To the editor:
Thank you for making the gun issue a front page item in your July 1 paper. It's an important controversy that even our latest presidential candidates are putting on the back burner.
I applaud the courage of average people like Marilyn Roy who are speaking out against America's deadly gun culture. I wonder how many Columbines and Virginia Techs we will have to endure before we finally realize that the only rational cure for our epidemic of gun violence is serious legislation.
We have 30,000 firearm-related deaths in the United States every year, the highest per capita ratio on the planet. Recent gun control laws have been working in other industrialized nations such as the U.K. and Australia. Why not America?
Here in Kansas we have two U.S. senators who believe private citizens should have access to military-type assault weapons. Cho, the Virginia Tech shooter, used high-capacity ammunition magazines that would have been outlawed by the 1994 assault weapon ban that has expired. And now a proliferation of concealed firearms in our home state?
I think our gun enthusiasts who promote general paranoia and distrust of local law enforcement would prefer that Kansas revert back to the 19th century. But, do we really want to return to the wild west days of Dodge City and other towns when every man was for himself, and the fastest gun prevailed?