The Norman Transcript

Opinion

March 28, 2013

Look into child gun safety bill

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

Gun rights and laws are becoming more of a controversy in America as activists, the government and the general public try to reduce the violence inflicted with such weapons. We can all agree that something needs to be done to curb violence, but that is where the agreeing stops.

Each year, a shocking number of deaths and injuries to children occur because of improper gun storage and lack of knowledge about the weapon. Each year, a staggering number of offenses are made due to children being given a gun.

I am calling on all community members to look into H.R. 65, titled Child Gun Safety and Gun Access Prevention Act of 2013, and help promote the passing of this great piece of legislature. This bill has many sections and is easily found for individual reading, so I will only hit on the highlights.

In the event a child accesses a gun in a person’s home and injury or death occurs, the gun owner will face up to three years imprisonment and fines. It is ultimately the gun owner’s responsibility to keep all weapons in a secure, safe place, away from children. The life of a child is worth so much more than being an irresponsible gun owner.

H.R. 65 also calls for a violent felony to be marked on an adult’s record for transferring a gun by any means to a juvenile. This means more charges for more criminals and more time in jail to keep our streets a little safer. In the case of the notorious pharmacy shooting, the person who gave Antwun Parker the gun would have caught an extra prison sentence.

Monies collected from these offenses will go into a fund distributed to police departments that will hold free child gun safety classes during parent friendly times and days. There also will be a nationwide child gun safety class given to kindergarten through 12th-graders in which all school districts must participate. If a child is taught about something inside and out, it greatly reduces their curiosity, thus reducing the chance of accidentally injuring themselves or another person.

How anyone could be against this bill is beyond me. The Child Gun Safety and Gun Access Prevention Act of 2013 does not take guns, it only makes gun owners more responsible, which is how it should be.

Stephanie Vlot

Norman

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