I emailed the following message to our former congressman, Mike Thompson, today and I urge my Davis neighbors to let him know their concerns about gun violence.
“I was very pleased to learn that Mike Thompson, my former congressman, has been appointed chair of Congress’s Gun Violence Prevention Task Force.
“I am contacting Mike because virtually all of the gun control proposals I have heard about so far concern constraints on the sale or ownership of semi-automatic assault rifles, ammo and magazines. While I support such measures, in particular Sen. Feinstein’s bill, I believe that if this is where Congress puts all of its efforts it will be turning a blind eye to the greater gun violence problem in our country; to wit, handguns.
“I read in the New York Times recently that in New York State, where there were over 700 gun murders last year, only five were committed with rifles, assault and otherwise. The rest of the slaughter was committed with handguns and largely in the state’s big cities. I would venture a guess that the gun violence situation is similar in other states including California. So while events like the Newtown, Conn., and Aurora, Colo., massacres are horrible and tragic, they account for an almost insignificant percentage of gun violence deaths. Accordingly, I believe it will be dereliction of the Gun Violence Prevention Task Force’s and Congress’s responsibility to not take on the challenge of combating handgun caused violence in the U.S.
“I hope Mike Thompson agrees.”
Sure, let’s control assault weapons but let’s also understand that the far greater problem in the U.S. is urban handgun violence.