Opinion: Reason for hope on guns: NY TIMES/ David Leonhardt

It will be crucial to see if guns can be brought under some control this time. Yes mental health, Yes temporary measures to secure schools (but not guns for teachers or school staff (POLICE), NO to enhanced assault rifles, semi automatics/ AR-15’s etc., for anyone under 21 AND strict limitations on their use/ownership by anyone outside the military except for licensed security personnel and carefully monitored firing ranges (in other words about 5% of their current availability. FLS/ POLITIX

The New York Times
The New York Times

Monday, February 19, 2018


David Leonhardt

Op-Ed Columnist

Vermont has some of the weakest gun laws in the country. After the school shooting in Florida last week, Vermont’s governor — Phil Scott, a Republican — initially vowed that those laws would remain the same.
But then he changed his mind.
He changed it just one day after his initial response. Why? In the meantime, an 18-year-old from Poultney, Vt. — a small town in the southwestern part of the state — was arrested for allegedly planning yet another school shooting.
“If we are at a point when we put our kids on a bus and send them to school without being able to guarantee their safety, who are we?” Scott said, according to Seven Days, a Vermont publication. “I need to be open-minded, objective and at least consider anything that will protect our kids.”
The governor’s about-face may be only words, but it’s still encouraging. And encouragement is important. I fully understand the instinct to despair about guns: Kids keep dying, and things never seem to change. But the only way they will change is if people outraged by gun violence resist despair.
“This world-weary prediction of inaction is pernicious,” ProPublica’s Alec MacGillis wrote this weekend, in a perceptive mini-essay on Twitter. “It demoralizes those who are actually motivated to fight against gun violence. And it lets off the hook those who are opposed to reform.”
MacGillis continued: “The NRA’s influence depends heavily on the PERCEPTION of its power. By building up the gun lobby as an indomitable force, pessimistic liberals are playing directly into its hands.”



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