Congress must reinstate the assault weapons ban in wake of school shooting | Letter to the Editor
December 18, 2012 · 12:03 PM
We live in a politically polarized and divisive time. But surely, in the wake of the horrific school shooting in Connecticut that killed 20 children and six adults, we can come together to force our leaders to ban all semi-automatic assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines.
We can no longer simply grieve from the sidelines — after the fact — for far-away victims. We fool ourselves by thinking that tragedies like the one that visited Sandy Hook Elementary only happen “somewhere else.”
Congress must reinstate the assault weapons ban — the Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act of 1994 — which was allowed to expire in 2004.
We can no longer allow the National Rifle Association (NRA) or other special interests to use political extortion and pressure tactics to prevent us from enacting common-sense legislation.
I’m not naïve. Nothing can keep us absolutely safe. But we must do what we can to minimize the likelihood that weapons designed solely for mass killing are no longer available.
And let’s be clear: few are advocating for a ban on handguns or hunting weapons. The slippery slope argument that the NRA espouses is a canard used to prevent reasonable legislation that even numerous NRA members favor.
What will it take for our political representatives to finally take action — a mass murder at a day-care facility, a hospital, an old-age home? Let’s hope not.
To locate your congressional representatives, visit http://www.votesmart.org. Contact them and demand action now!
Aaron Halabe, Redmond