Letter challenging constitutionality of gun laws is misguided

FI-Letter-to-the-EditorTo the Editor

In response to Louise Barnes’ letter of March 20, let me ask this: With all due respect, Louise, what planet are you living on?

Seriously, what has any public official done or said in this state to make you think that SWAT teams are poised to storm the homes of all gunowners in Connecticut to seize their guns? I assure you that monkeys will sooner be flying out of the Capitol dome than SWAT teams will be storming your personal barricades.

Let me present some facts and a little history. Last year, in response to the incredible tragedy at Sandy Hook (do I need to remind you what actually happened there?), tens of thousands of your fellow citizens were moved to push the state legislature for common sense gun reform. There is nothing radical or Stalinistic or Hitlerish in the law that resulted.

I’m not sure how you define citizenship but, to me, if you own a weapon that has the capacity to kill dozens of people in a few seconds, it seems entirely reasonable and reassuring that the state would have an interest in knowing that you do so. Registering such a weapon would be not be a tremendous sacrifice to make in exchange for its ownership.

There are numerous annoyances that all of us put up with in exchange for living in a civil society. Nobody likes to pay taxes or stand in line at the DMV or take off our shoes to board a plane, but we do so for the common good.

It’s clear that you don’t have much of a grasp of our Constitution or the legislative process. This law was passed by a large bipartisan majority in Hartford. Further, earlier this year, the U.S. District Court ruled the law’s ban on assault weapons and large capacity magazines is constitutional, because there is a compelling public safety reason to restrict ultra-lethal firearms.

So, contrary to your notions of constitutionality, sensible people would conclude that our “constitutional” responsibility in this case is not to defy this law, as you suggest, but rather to enforce it.

 

Dan Edelstein
Old Greenwich

 

The author is a founding member of the Greenwich Council Against Gun Violence.

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