The Norman Transcript


January 21, 2013

Benefits of gun laws outweigh gun hazards

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

I appreciate Bill Dragoo’s discussion on gun ownership and its relations with cigarette smoking. I, too, see many parallels, but my viewpoint is different. Dragoo suggests that more gun laws “will have no more effect than anti-smoking ads...” However, I think most people agree that anti-smoking laws and educational advertising have been tremendously successful. Like the gun lobbyists of today, the cigarette lobbyists of the 1950s and 1960s ran the show, working hard to suppress all scientific studies that detailed the dangers of cigarettes. Despite their best efforts, people began to understand the health risks of smoking, and with public pressure, in 1964 the surgeon general officially recognized these risks. Legislation soon followed — beginning with advertised these risks on cigarette labels, then stopping advertisements to children, television and billboard ads, and finally, curtailing smoking in public places. Now, 20 percent of all Americans smoke, down from 42 percent in 1964. What if we could have the same success rate in reducing gun violence?

Now, many people have guns because of a legitimate fear of intruders while other people enjoy hunting, which has a long history in this country. However, while some people have successfully fended off intruders, the number of people killed with guns, including accidental deaths, murders, suicides, and killing sprees, far outweighs the number of lives saved by guns. Because of these statistics, both the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry have concluded that the safest home for children is a home without guns. However, gun owners’ rights trump these safety issues, thanks to the Second Amendment. Despite this, couldn’t we at least think of better ways to protect children from guns? Currently, child access prevention laws (CAP) don’t exist at the federal level, and in only half the states (including Oklahoma, thank you!), yet only eight states hold owners accountable for a child injured with a loaded gun left out. We clearly need more accountability on this issue.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Help better than commentary

    For the last seven years, I have helped run Hands Helping Paws, an animal welfare and rescue group that fosters Norman’s abandoned animals and advocates for spay and neuter initiatives to reduce our community’s problems with stray and ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Stick to the sports

    Editor, The Transcript: Why must we, especially us nice conservatives, be subjected to political commentary in a sports column? I hear/view Fox News routinely and find their coverage quite acceptable. I also hear/view CNN and MSNBC. I ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Corporation Commission should should evaluate quakes, fracturing

    Editor, The Transcript: Is your house at risk of being damaged in an earthquake because of fracking? Maybe. We’ve seen more earthquakes and tremors in Oklahoma seven months into 2014 than in the two previous years combined. At the same ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Norman can stop fracking before it escalates

    Editor, The Transcript: There are 163 fracked wells within Norman city limits. With growing attention to health and safety concerns, the city is considering changes to the existing oil and gas ordinance....

    July 27, 2014

  • We should be offended by things that matter

    Editor, The Transcript: I’m offended. Why you say? I live in the USA, in Norman — a great town. What could possibly offend me? I’ll tell you. It’s people that are offended by the most meaningless things (what to call an evergreen tree in ...

    July 27, 2014

  • James Garner will be missed

    Editor, The Transcript: Norman native son James Garner was a fine actor on stage, screen and television. I enjoyed the “Maverick” TV series and, in particular, the 1959 episode “The Strange Journey of Jenny Hill” in which the very popular ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Change some lines

    Editor, The Transcript: Looking at how our elected Republican friends are reacting to the refugee children crossing the border and now being housed in Lawton, I have a suggestion. Let’s edit the Christian Bible in several places to reflect ...

    July 21, 2014

  • New health care system demonized

    To the Editor: In October 2013, soon after we were asked to take over management responsibilities at our family business, we were visited by the company’s health insurance agent. She explained that a decision needed to be made regarding ...

    July 21, 2014

  • The longer the wait, the higher the cost

    Editor, The Transcript: Thanks for the great article of July 3 on the Norman chapter of the Citizens Climate Lobby group that recently went to D.C. as citizen lobbyists, working to get a revenue-neutral carbon pollution fee, refunded in ...

    July 20, 2014

  • Natural beauty makes way for parking

    Editor, The Transcript: In support and response to an editorial in The Transcript on June 28 by Pam McIntosh, I am writing this article. In the early ‘70s, many years ago, I lived in what was known as the Sooner Mobile Home Park on South ...

    July 20, 2014