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Another mass shooting involving a semi-automatic “assault style” weapon means another opportunity for our elected officials to send “thoughts and prayers” and offer up the excuse that it is “too soon to address gun control.” Well, thoughts and prayers do not seem to be solving the problem, and if not now, then when? One of the teachers in the Florida high school said that our government has failed us, and she is spot-on.

I am tired of the lame argument about mental illness being the cause of our schools, churches, and workplaces becoming slaughter houses. Yes, mental illness is certainly part of the problem, but the overarching problem is the easy access to weapons, particularly assault type weapons. The National Rifle Association would have us believe that the answer to gun violence is to have more guns available so the good guys can thwart the kooks. That is ridiculous. That argument only supports the supply side of the insanity that got us to this point.

The Second Amendment is over 200 years old and was written at a time when muzzle loaders were state of the art and standing militias were necessary to defray the expense of a large standing army. To cite it today as justification for ownership of a weapon designed solely for the purpose of killing another person is pure stupidity. Next month we will sadly have another reason to send thoughts and prayers and it will still be too soon to talk about gun control.

Kenneth R. England

Albany (Feb. 16)


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