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posted: 3/23/2013 5:00 AM

Leaders lack courage to limit gun use

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One of the great aspects of living in the U.S. is the freedom to express our beliefs and our democratic system in which all citizens can influence our legislators. Unfortunately, the gun control debate over many decades is an example of a powerful lobbying group representing a small fraction of citizens can trump the will of the people and a reasonable discussion.

I am disgusted by the lack of courage from our political leaders as any new gun control bill appears to be watered down to ineffective cosmetic changes. While the Supreme Court has ruled that the Second amendment clearly protects the right to bear arms, it also has ruled that reasonable regulations are perfectly constitutional. I have not heard or read any reasonable argument to support the need for legal possession of assault weapons or more than 10-clip magazines.

Our country launched a pre-emptive war causing the deaths of thousands of Americans and at a cost of hundreds of billions of dollars to eliminate nonexistent WMDs for national security reasons, and yet we cannot regulate clearly existent WMDs at home. The Patriot Act clearly infringes on constitutional rights for national security purposes, but our federal legislators pass this bill while ignoring reasonable restrictions on weapons designed only to murder people. The NRA leadership appears to be for sale to gun and ammunition manufacturers, and our legislators appear to be for sale to the NRA. They cannot even support reasonable universal background checks, allowing for unfettered access of weapons to criminals and the mentally insane.

We are making a mockery of the wisdom of our courageous forefathers who wrote the Constitution. We have spineless leaders who are spitting in the face of the victims of Sandy Hook and other tragic victims of gun violence.

Don Baker

Elk Grove Village

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