More gun-control laws not answer

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The national debate on mass shootings and gun control is, and should be, of concern to every single American — whether a gun-control advocate or opponent. I am the proud owner of a variety of weapons used for recreational shooting, hunting and personal/home defense. I am also one of the millions of gunowners who secure their weapons and ammunition except when they are in use or being carried on my person.

People on both sides of this debate need to understand that guns don’t kill people, it is people with guns who kill people. By and of themselves guns are no more dangerous than any other inanimate object that can be found in any home, office or school.

But in the hands of criminals, mentally ill people or deranged maniacs these same inanimate objects become tools of death and destruction. While I am against registering my weapons and do not feel actions such as this will have any effect, I actively support more intensive background checks on those purchasing weapons — if you have nothing to hide then you have nothing to be afraid of.

The check will be completed and you will obtain your weapons if the background check reveals no derogatory information. However, there is a flip side to this coin. Increased background checks will not catch the thief who steals a gun or the criminal or other unsavory character who buys a weapon on the black market or through the criminal network.

The banning of certain weapons or categories of weapons is not the answer either for there will always be a means for those intent on doing harm to obtain a weapon for their evil purposes — be it an assault weapon, handgun, shotgun, baseball bat or pry bar.

As a responsible American citizen, sportsman and gun owner, I strongly believe in the right to own weapons for recreational shooting, hunting and, yes, even for defending myself, my family and my home if it becomes necessary.

Until we address the underlying social and societal ills in our country all the gun-control measures in the world will not stop the shootings.

Ken Simpson

Milton-Freewater

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