Your Opinion: Second Amendment protection

Dear Editor:

We watched on television, in horror, as the Columbine massacre unfolded in 1999. What haunts me to this day is the sight of SWAT team members and FBI agents walking around the outside of the school throughout the 49-minute rampage instead of going inside where the murders were occurring. This is a lesson for those who naively believe that, when they get into trouble, law enforcement will always be able to successfully come to their rescue.

Had a trained teacher, administrator or security officer had a weapon inside Columbine High School, he or she could have ended that siege earlier. It was only ended when the crazed perpetrators shot themselves. An armed, trained school official could have ended the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, as well.

As a response to the horrific Connecticut school shooting, many are clamoring for more gun laws. The only thing more firearm restrictions will accomplish will be to make it harder for innocent citizens to protect themselves in the case of a home invasion. Read the recent story of the Georgia mother who protected herself and her young children by shooting a home invader. He was still able to exit the home on his own power. What politician knows how many bullets it will take for a person to protect themselves from a criminal while awaiting the arrival of the police, assuming the homeowner has been able to call 911 in the first place? What if the intruder is on methamphetamines and the homeowner has to change magazines before the perpetrator goes down?

Also read the story of Suzanna Hupp, who was eating with her parents at Luby’s Cafeteria in 1991 when a crazed gunman began firing at patrons. Suzanna had a firearm in her car, but Texas law at that time prevented her from bringing it inside. When police finally arrived, a single shot fired by police caused the shooter to flee. By then, he had shot 42 people, 23 fatally. If Ms. Hupp had been able to deliver that shot, her parents’ and 21 other people’s lives might have been saved.

Many proponents of additional gun laws are simply unfamiliar with firearms and skittish about them. If they choose to remain so, that is their right. But citizens who exercise their Second Amendment rights should not be forced into greater personal danger because of the skittishness of others.

Issue-oriented letters to the editor in response to this or about other local topics are welcome. All letters should be limited to 400 words. The author's name must appear with the letter, and the name, address and phone number provided for verification. Letters that cannot be verified by telephone will not be published. Send letters for publication to editor@newstribune.com

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