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Wednesday
Oct072015

More laws not answer

A Time to Respond with Reason, Not Emotion
It is easy to respond emotionally to the tragedy in Roseburg but it is also crucial to respond with reason. I have been involved in law enforcement or providing security for high risk individuals for over forty years and there are several undeniable facts that have to be considered. No matter what laws are passed, criminals will always be able to obtain or create firearms. It is impossible to eliminate all firearms owned by the public and ownership is a constitutionally protected right. Criminals are opportunistic and generally cowards, which is why shooters such as this prefer ‘gun free zones’ as they are looked upon as ‘target rich environments’ where they will have little to no resistance to their actions. There have been no attacks of this type that did not occur at a ‘gun free zone’. The issue is not the firearms, it is the perpetrator. The worst school killing in the nation occurred in Michigan in 1927 when the school board treasurer lost the election for town clerk and took out his anger by blowing up the elementary school killing 44 and injuring 58. In almost all cases, there are warning signs given by the perpetrator prior to the act and those warning signs need to be acted upon by those who have knowledge of them and the individual such as postings on social media, activities that the person is involved in, etc. Law enforcement cannot do it alone and additional firearms laws will not solve the problem.

Steve Riley
Eugene, Oregon

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