To the Editor:
The clamor from progressive members of our society to do more about gun control is without merit. With the exception of two states, the majority of the states in the union have an excess of sufficient gun controls in place to protect our citizens.
As everyone is no doubt aware, in China, with stringent controls to deny their citizens firearms, the weapon of choice in a rising number of attacks in schools is only a knife. Any individual with murderous intent will find a weapon to commit the crime. The worst school killing committed in America was done with an explosive: dynamite. As I recall, the all time favorite weapon for violence here at home is a baseball bat.
Without exception, current crime statistics demonstrate that where the average law-abiding citizen is allowed to carry a firearm there is a dramatic decrease in the crime rate. Even criminals have some motivation for self preservation and generally, will not knowingly face down someone who is going to kill in self-defense.
Consider this: citizens of Vermont who legally own a firearm have no gun controls prohibiting or controlling the carrying of a concealed weapon and it is considered the safest state in the Union. As the media is now reporting, the State of Utah allows permit holders to carry concealed in a school. I had the opportunity to personally interview a teacher in Utah who told me that other teachers in the school depend on this teacher to protect them all.
It is instructive to consider a media report on the result of a Palestinian terrorist attack on an Israeli school. The terrorists were stopped by the armed grandmothers on patrol in the school. After the attack, one of the terrorists was whining and complaining they would never have attacked the school if they had known the grandmothers had guns.
This latest incident in Connecticut has nothing to do with a lack of gun control and everything to do with a society that has raised several generations of youth without a moral foundation or self control. Our society today has thrown away instruction in lawful moral conduct and common sense, and we are in denial.
As an example, it has been stated that by the time the average American child has completed the sixth grade, he or she will have seen 8000 homicides and 100,00 acts of violence on television. Surveys have shown that among young American males, 22 to 34 percent have tried to imitate crime techniques seen on television. So I ask you, as just one example, what type of behavior can we reasonably expect to see from our children when they have been exposed to modern day television programing as their model?
A clamor for more gun controls is not a solution to large scale acts of murder. Compounding the problem in finding solutions to this type of tragedy is a significant number of Americans have not taken the time to understand any of the factors affecting the welfare of our society or our children.
We no longer teach either history or critical thinking skills in our schools so, again, what should we expect? We teach our students how to pass an exam but not how to think for themselves. Too many Americans see an entertainment personality expound on something they know nothing about and, like sheep, the viewers just climb on the band wagon.
It is my opinion that rational discourse to control violence and mayhem in our schools or the public square has very little to do with guns used in crimes and everything to do with a failure in society. The expectation for morality, self control and just plain common-sense decency have systematically been removed from our citizens.
It is astounding the widespread media play being given to various individuals calling for the outright killing of gun rights advocates such as NRA members. It is further hypocritical to observe actors and actresses in the entertainment industry demanding an end to gun ownership while they portray gun toting cold blooded deranged killers in movies.
I am somewhat pessimistic that Americans at large are willing to control many, if any, of the factors influencing the moral fiber and resultant actions of our society.
Dana D. Dyer, Bristol