Letter: Research shows gun restrictions help make us safer

Black and white, woman pointing old gun to front
Photo via Getty Images

To the Editor,

Hold onto your hats folks. I agree with the resident right-wing columnist on one point, that bail reform was a bad idea and should be rescinded. However, we part ways when the author portrays the idea of bail reform as endemic among progressives, when in actuality, only a tiny sliver of this group supports the concept.

The most flagrant falsehoods this week include  “…the Left has justified riots and crimes …”.  That charge is both untrue and hypocritical, and as usual, no evidence is offered by the hard right author. Apart from the GOP justification of the Jan. 6 insurrection, characterizing the riot as “legitimate political discourse,” I have never heard any non-Republican politician justify violence.

Then the ideologue echoes the NRA straw man position that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people,” a fallacy which understates “the relevance of proximate causation,” as D. K. Johnson notes in Psychology Today. In other words, the gun enables the murder to occur. Guns allow criminal intent to easily become reality, making killing virtually effortless, easier than using, say, a knife or a baseball bat. As Tulane’s Micheal Shammas notes, “The issue is not whether guns can spontaneously kill people on their own. The issue involves how incredibly easy a modern weapon makes killing.”

Finally the author cites the Fraser Institute, a Canadian outfit and recipient of much cash from the notorious Koch brothers, which somehow provides a research conclusion diametrically opposed to all other research performed on the relationship between gun regulations and crime. It shows that if there is an outlier, Frank will find it. Researchers at more mainstream organizations, such as Boston University have found that, “The average homicide rate in states without background checks is 58% higher than the average in states with background-check laws in place.”

On the national front, the news of Trump’s mishandling of government documents, including some that were top secret, leads one to wonder, what is he hiding? Coupled with revelations detailing the attempted deployment of  government agencies to seize voting machines and concerted efforts on federal, state and local levels to overturn the 2020 election, could these developments convince the MAGA crowd that this man should never be considered for any future political position? Nah, cults don’t work that way.

These revelations demand yet another investigation into the disgraceful conduct of the 45th president.

Pasqual Pelosi

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