The Norman Transcript

Letters

April 28, 2013

Political fear trumping safety in gun control debate

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

Just four months after the massacre of elementary school children and teachers at Newtown, Connecticut, it appears the most modest of all gun control measures is now dead— the victim of a minority of uncourageous United States Senators capitulating once again to a powerful special interest.

Former U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords minced no words: “Senators looked over their shoulders at the powerful, shadowy gun lobby and brought shame on themselves and our government by choosing to do nothing. “ The defeated measure, intended to close the background check loophole for gun show sales and internet sales, was a watered down version. Dropped from its provisions were the calls for banning assault rifles and high capacity, multi-round ammunition clips. The loophole targeted was reportedly characterized by Senator John McCain several years ago as needed only by “criminals and terrorists.” To those two categories could be added the category of persons with mental illnesses.

Under the proposed bill, no one’s guns were being taken away and hunters did not have to worry about ammunition restrictions or some definitional snag which made a “shotgun” more than just a shotgun. Yet, despite its limited scope, in the end, the bill received only 54 votes, falling 6 votes short of the 60 needed for passage.

Initially, in the aftermath of the Newtown tragedy, passage of an expanded background check bill seemed guaranteed. An overwhelming majority of the nation’s citizens supported the idea, as did most law enforcement leaders. The need was neither complex nor controversial. But then the NRA and gun lobby went to work. A collection of misstatements helped seal the measure’s defeat. The NRA claimed the legislation could apply to transfers between family members, falsely spreading the word that a gift of a hunting shotgun to a 12 year old grandson could be subject to a federal background check. The proposed bill excluded transfers within a family and between friends.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Letters
  • Reform is necessary

    Editor, The Transcript: Last year, the legislature passed laws reforming the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs, which was a good start, but more is needed. Recent media reports have revealed that the ODVA employs M.D. and D.O. ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Keep your brain cells

    Editor, The Transcript: Hey kids. Four centuries ago, Shakespeare wrote about life’s seven great adventures. I forget his exact words, but they were something like this: 1. Our birth; none of us can remember it, but never the less, it is ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Necessary services may be reduced

    Editor, The Transcript: There were criticisms of the Oklahoma Senate bill for a test project to privatize management of Medicaid; however, no one mentioned a critical issue of reduced services for the more needy of our society....

    April 20, 2014

  • Enforcement not the issue

    Editor, The Transcript: The government is legally right in the U.S. Government vs. Bundy Ranch matter....

    April 20, 2014

  • Family thanks community, takes issue with photo

    Editor, The Transcript: As I write this, it’s been almost eight weeks since Feb. 17, the day my family’s home burned in a fire. We lost our 15-year-old cat, Misti; 7-year-old dog, Sully; 3-year-old rescue squirrel, Rocky; almost 2-year-old ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Norman should act wisely

    Editor, The Transcript: The fact that the city of Norman sells water for oil/gas drilling (or any other purpose) for less than half what they pay Oklahoma City when buying water, and while Norman residents are on rationing, is an act of ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Fallin should help residents

    Editor, The Transcript: I see this week that our empty skirt of a governor asked the federal government (small business administration) for much money. She is concerned about the suffering of the business owners in Lexington and Purcell ...

    April 17, 2014

  • League of Women Voters meeting

    Editor, The Transcript: On Saturday, May 10, the Norman League of Women Voters will hold its annual meeting at the Memorial Presbyterian Church, 601 24th Ave. SW, Norman, OK, from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm....

    April 12, 2014

  • Frackers should use gray water

    Editor, The Transcript: As reported by Joe Wertz in the March 31 issue of StateImpact Oklahoma, Finley Resources, a Texas-based oil drilling company, has arranged with the city of Norman to buy Norman’s drinking water from hydrants to use ...

    April 11, 2014

  • Columnists have it wrong

    Editor, The Transcript: I typically enjoy Class Act (the Q&A with school counselors published on Fridays) very much. I think they bring a rational and empathetic response to parents’ concerns when it comes to the challenges students and ...

    April 8, 2014