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Opinion: Time has come for gun control

I want to thank Mr. Angelo Lynn for his editorial “How to stop the madness of gun violence: (Addison Independent, Oct. 5) in response to the Oregon shootings and our madness of perpetual gun violence. I once visited the campus of Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Ore., decades ago, when I lived in the Pacific Northwest. I remember how gorgeous it was there in the coastal river valleys of the southern Oregon lumber country. This latest shooting will mar that memory.
It is something to think about that, to quote the editorial, “more preschoolers are shot dead each year (82 in 2013) than police officers are in the line of duty (27 in 2013).” The violent deaths of 27 policemen in 2013, or any year, is a national tragedy; the violent deaths of 82 preschoolers is a surreal sadness that should make us wonder if we have slipped off of our moorings and gone mad.
We should be ashamed that our Congress has barred information or research on the results of our gun culture from reaching the public. As Mr. Lynn’s editorial stated “Why? Because the gun lobby did not want public awareness of facts to prompt sensible gun regulations.” This shows what we already know, that money from corporate donors is, in general, more dear to our Congress than our lives.
I also stand with President Obama to ask when we as a nation will finally summon the moral, political, and social courage to end these wanton massacres. “How to stop the gun madness” listed some sensible solutions, which could be easily implemented while not infringing on law-abiding gun owners.
As a survivor of a random, drive-by shooting many years ago, I would hope that we the people mean more than just “stuff happens,” to our corporate-owned Congress, though I doubt it.
Walter Carpenter
Montpelier

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