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Guns – Time for More Controls? A Ban?

Friday's massacre of 20 first-graders and six adults by a heavily armed gunman in Newtown, Conn., has revived the debate over gun control. We'd like to hear from readers if you think more controls are needed and, if so, what kind.

Armed with two powerful handguns and a semiautomatic AR-15 rifle, Adam Lanza blasted his way through Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., on Friday.

He killed 20 first-graders and six adults, all women, shooting his victims multiple times, before taking his own life. Among those killed was his mother, a gun enthusiast who had often taken him to a local shooting range.

The massacre – coming on top of several other recent mass shootings in the United States, including the April 2 killing of seven people at Oikos University in Oakland – has reignited the gun control debate.

California Senator Dianne Feinstein on Sunday said she would introduce a bill to renew the national ban on assault weapons that lasted for a decade from 1994-2004 before it expired. Some critics viewed the ban as ineffective.

In a statement Friday, U.S. Representative George Miller said it's time "for serious reflection about how we can reduce the flow of guns into the wrong hands." The nation, he said, must "honestly discuss how to prevent people intent on carrying out these savage attacks from so easily obtaining guns and ammunition."

President Barack Obama, speaking at a memorial service Sunday night in Newtown, pledged to "use whatever power this office holds" to stop such massacres and said there was no “excuse for inaction." The New York Times described the President's remarks as "hinting at a fresh effort to curb the spread of guns."

Should we place tighter restrictions on guns and gun ownership? Should they be banned entirely? Or should we make it easier for more people to arm themselves?

We'd like to know what Patch readers think in our poll below and in the comments section. Do you think gun control laws should be more strict or less strict? If you support more control, what should it be and how should it be enforced?

Nadja Adolf December 24, 2012 at 07:19 PM
A 9mm is right up there with a .38 Special ++P, isn't it?
Nadja Adolf December 24, 2012 at 07:23 PM
Recently KCBS has given a lot of free air time to a woman from the Brady Bunch who wants firearms banned because she is a survivor of the Grenada Hills Jewish Center spree killing. KCBS - and she - ignore the fact that the Neo-Nazi involved first stole the firearms used from Ft. Lewis, a military base in the Puget Sound area, and that his original target was a Jewish Center in the Pacific Northwest. He abandoned his original plan and drove all of the way from the Puget Sound area, by Seattle, to southern California after discovering that the Jewish Center he originally intended to attack had armed staff members. He bypassed another since he apparently feared that their might be concealed carry permit holders on the premises. To me, that says it all.
Nadja Adolf December 24, 2012 at 07:40 PM
Alex, you are truly ignorant of firearms. Tim has your number; and so do I. Shooting hundreds of rounds in minutes at one shot per trigger pull on an autoloader (also referred to as a semi-automatic.)? Most autoloaders couldn't handle either the heat and do not have a fast enough reload to get close to "hundreds of rounds in minutes." Quick, can you tell me why rural deputies and game wardens in cold climate areas often carry revolvers instead of autoloaders? I'll bet Jason, Tim, Albert, and several others can - and you can't.
Albert Rubio December 27, 2012 at 07:22 PM
would the anti gun crowd support a total ban on guns including the police? Why not if gun bans actually work? (answer please) It would prevent unlawful deaths like these too: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/04/cleveland-police-shooting-137-shots-timothy-russell-malissa-williams_n_2239675.html
Albert Rubio December 28, 2012 at 12:44 AM
I admit that I was surprised about this... "Surprising fact: Half of gun deaths are suicides" http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25463844/ns/us_news-life/t/surprising-fact-half-gun-deaths-are-suicides/#.UNzjBuS_GSo

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