To the editor:
Every reasonable person favors preventing the criminal use of guns. But we are not going to make progress on that until the gun control lobby ends its campaign of misinformation …
To the editor:
Every reasonable person favors preventing the criminal use of guns. But we are not going to make progress on that until the gun control lobby ends its campaign of misinformation and starts dealing in facts. For decades they have spread false information that has resulted in gun laws that have made the public less safe.
Two recent letters to the editor of this newspaper are examples of their misinformation, “Urge your government to allow critical gun safety votes” and “Republican Congress shares responsibility for gun deaths,” both in the April 27 edition.
The letters call for banning AR-15 type of rifle. They call these “assault weapons,” “weapons of war” and “battlefield weapons.” That simply isn’t true. An assault weapon is a submachine gun that fires continuously as long as the trigger is pulled. AR-15s are semiautomatic rifles that require a pull of the trigger to fire each shot. Our military does not use AR-15s so they are not weapons of war or battlefield weapons. The three terms are being purposely misapplied to AR-15s to scare the public into supporting a gun control agenda.
Unfortunately, the lie worked. As a result, some Rhode Islanders mistakenly believe that fully automatic firearms (machine guns) are legal here. The truth is that possession of automatic firearms is strictly prohibited in this state.
One of the letters claims that so called assault rifles are “used in most mass shootings.” Also not true. According to a February 2022 report from the U.S. Department of Justice, “most individuals who engaged in mass shootings used handguns (77.2 percent), and 25.1 percent used assault rifles …”
Another inconvenient truth: Banning AR-15s will make little difference to public safety. Rifles are used in less than 3 percent of all homicides.
Those in favor of repeating the 1994-2004 Assault Weapons Ban claim it reduced criminal shootings. But did it? The most extensive and definitive study of the ban was by the U.S. Department of Justice, which concluded there was no significant evidence that it did.
Every point above can be verified online. It may take a bit of work to find objective sources. Google and most other search engines favor gun control so they ignore or push objective sources further down in their listings. Pay no attention to anything from Everytown, Giffords, The Brady Campaign, Violence Policy Center, Southern Poverty Law Center and the antigun publications and blogs. They are gun control disinformation factories.
Passing more misguided gun laws is not a solution. That’s an ineffective, feel-good response to a complex problem. Most homicides are committed by career criminals, street gangs, drug dealers and people who are mentally unbalanced. They pay little to no attention to laws. So how can passing more gun laws that will be ignored reduce violent crime?
To have truly effective firearms policies, the public and our politicians need to ignore the misinformation and fantasies of gun control extremists and focus on reality and facts. Only then can we prevent the criminal use of firearms.
544 Boyds Lane