Banning all guns isn’t the answer to mass shootings


In reply to Sharron Gray’s Feb. 3 letter to the editor, she said that her niece, visiting from London, had the answer to our gun violence problem.

We should simply ban guns like they do in Great Britain.

Well, my foreign friend, it’s just not quite that simple. Though I do believe it’s a big problem, a “ban” won’t solve it. Just who will be left with a gun to defend themselves?

Without in any way minimizing the tragic mass shootings in the United States, I would like to point out that, in 2017, mass shootings deaths — four or more victims — declined from 456 in 2016 to 433 in 2017.

Still one death is too many, I readily agree.

However, after viewing all the political speeches and knee-jerk responses by our politicians in Washington, D.C., and elsewhere to the Valentine’s Day tragedy, I say compare all these deaths to the drug overdose deaths in 2016. Some 64,000 people died; seven per hour.

And, don’t forget, drug driving deaths in 2015, 10,265 died, accounting for 29 percent of all fatal accidents.

Where’s all the uproar over these two statistics? Not so much because they don’t pull at our heartstrings like a mass shooting. They all need our attention, but banning firearms from everyone is not the answer.

If it is, as the writer suggests, then we should ban all drugs and the doctors who provide them. And then ban car ownership? Makes about the same sense, now doesn’t it?

By the way, 2,030 people used a firearm to defend themselves in 2017. Lucky they weren’t in good old London town, now isn’t it?

Fred Stilwell

Oak Harbor

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