The Norman Transcript

Opinion

February 9, 2013

Americans aren’t trying to repeal rights

(Continued)

NORMAN —

As the law now stands, the private sale loophole enables anybody to buy a gun without passing a background check. Obviously, if you have criminal intent, that’s where you would go. Why must we make it so easy for them?

Of course, there are those who complain that they have a right to unlimited ammunition and to horde unlimited numbers of assault weapons. But I have heard not one person come forward to offer one legitimate purpose for doing so. My mother used to say that just because you have a right to stuff peas up your nose doesn’t make it a good idea.

Do not talk of the right of Americans to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” as though only wielders of assault weapons are entitled to those rights. For most Americans, liberty means being able to go about their daily lives, to work, to church, to school, to the mall or to the movie theater without fear of being massacred. The idea that we can best protect ourselves by also being armed is nonsense.

If guns really kept us safe, the United States would have a very low homicide rate. But the reality is that individual nations like Germany, Canada and Japan each have fewer than 200 gun homicides a year, while we endure 30,000.

It is, of course, true, that people can be killed in car crashes, stabbed by knives or even hit over the head by baseball bats, as one writer to The Transcript would have it. But those gadgets exist for purposes other than killing and maiming. Nor can they kill as many people as quickly as can high-caliber assault weapons.

What makes guns so startingly effective is also what makes them so dangerous. How many of the more than 30,000 Americans killed by guns every year would be alive if their attacker had had nothing more than a knife or a baseball bat? How many of the suicides?

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • A dip in optimism

    Midwestern and Plains states remained in the positive column in a recent economic survey index, but Oklahoma pessimism is beginning to bog them down. The Sooner State’s index dropped from 66.6 to 54.9 from June to July, still in positive ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Invest in more clean energy

    Editor, The Transcript: Ken Miller’s July 19 article, “Okla. Wheat Crop Worst in Nearly half a century,” states the economic hardship that the current drought is having on Oklahoma wheat farmers, who have been forced to feed their wheat to ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Sign petition to put shelters in schools

    Every successful grassroots initiative requires a plethora of volunteers who are willing to do whatever it takes, and the movement to build storm shelters in every Oklahoma public school is no different....

    August 2, 2014

  • Polls that really matter

    The pre-season college football polls make for good reading in the summer months. Coaches and football beat writers weigh in regularly on who they think are the nation’s top teams....

    August 2, 2014

  • Tax free starts today

    A few years ago, Oklahoma shoppers were getting used to driving south to take advantage of Texas’ tax-free weekend. The outlet mall on Interstate 35 near Gainesville was packed with as many Oklahoma tagged cars as those from Texas....

    August 1, 2014

  • Just wondering about things

    Editor, The Transcript: Why are our companies still investing so much in China, now that they own over a trillion dollars of our debt? Why is China pouring billions into their military and threatening many of their neighbors? Why don’t we ...

    August 1, 2014

  • Top conservatives, liberals

    Three local lawmakers made the lists of top 10 conservatives and top 10 liberals in the Oklahoma Constitution’s 2014 Conservative Index. Editor Steve Byas reported that it’s the 36th year for the publication’s index....

    August 1, 2014

  • Marijuana a gateway for new OK voters

    A poll this past year showed significant Oklahoma support for legalizing the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. The poll showed that more than 71 percent of those surveyed thought medical marijuana was appropriate for patients who ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Expansion effect evaluated

    Editor, The Transcript: The effect of the Medicaid expansion rejection and acceptance on hospitals’ uncompensated costs are now being evaluated....

    July 31, 2014

  • America paying the piper

    Every third American you pass on the street has debts that have been turned over to a collection agency whose 140,000 workers are keeping the phones ringing....

    July 31, 2014