Join Date: July 28, 2010
Writing to your representatives
We're going to need to do a lot of calling and writing in the near future, IMHO. I offer up the following as a template, to be copied, pasted, modified, as each of you see fit, in writing to your senators and representatives.
Like millions of Americans, I was horrified and saddened to hear the news about the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Connecticut. As the father of a school-age child, I cannot begin to imagine the grief that the famillies of the children who were killed must be feeling. I grieve with them. Our nation grieves with them.
In addition to being a father, I am a husband, an attorney, a hunter and gun owner. I have watched, for the past five days, as the mainstream media and gun-control advocates have cried out for harsher restrictions on gun ownwership. Truth be told, such entities have seemed positively gleeful at the tragedy. The Sandy Hook shooting offers the gun-control groups a chance at garnering more political capital than they have had in years.
Emotions on the gun-control front run very high right now, but I would urge you to exercise caution. Please use reason and logic in casting your votes on gun-control bills, which, I feel certain, will cross your desk in the near future. No amount of gun control, no amount of feel-good legislation would have prevented this tragedy. Please remember that the shooting at Columbine, which has become the archetype for school shootings in this country, took place in 1999, when the federal assault weapons had been in place for five years. Remember that Timothy McVeigh killed 168 people, including 19 children still in day care, using a box van, fertilizer and fuel. He used no firearms, to the best of my recollection. There were no calls for bans on box vans. The 9/11 terrorists used box cutters and airplanes to kill thousands. Not one firearm was used. There was no call for a ban on box cutters.
Please remember that restrictions on firearms only restricts those who will abide by the laws. Millions of gun owners killed no one. Millions of gun owners had no part in the Sandy Hook shooting. Millions of gun owners are just as horrified as the rest of the nation at the senseless butchery committed by a madman. Further restrictions on the law-abiding, gun-owning public only punishes those of us who will obey the law. Violent felons and the mentally ill will remain unaffected.
Further the creation of Gun-Free Zones has only served to ensure that killers can always find defenseless targets. At every public shooting, Sandy Hook, Columbine, Jonesboro, Appalachia Law School, Virginia Tech, as well as post offices, and many other public locations, killers have been able to trap their victims, sure in the knowledge that not one person in the target area would have the means to defend themselves. While the idea of a gun-free zone may seem nice at first blush, it has become apparent that a person who is willing to gun down dozens of others is unconcerned about the prohibition on firearms possession in a given area. Rarely, it seems, does such a killer plan on coming out alive. When I think of these Gun Free Zones, I cannot help but think about a phrase we used in the small town in which I grew up: "like shootin' fish in a barrel." The time has come to repeal the gun-free zones laws and allow all Americans the right to effectively defend themselves, their children, and those in their care, whenever and whereever they may be found.
Thank you for your time and attention in this matter.
I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer. If you need some honest-to-goodness legal advice, go buy some.