The Austin Chronicle

To Regulate or Not to Regulate

RECEIVED Fri., Dec. 21, 2012

Dear Editor,
    Re: “Point Austin: Guns 'R' Us” [News, Dec. 21], it stands to reason that the senior news editor would have a bully pulpit from which to espouse the decidedly liberal philosophy of your publication. But as a longtime Austin resident and avid reader, I know well the leftish leanings of the Chronicle, and though I do not always agree with this stance and think there should occasionally be a more moderate voice offered equal time, I am not writing with that in mind. Rather, I am interested in two salient points.
    First, when it comes to the murder of innocents, be they elementary school children, theatregoers, Colorado high school students, or even football players' girlfriends, etc., no rational person could ever disagree that such tragedies were made easier by the proliferation of guns. And in the aftermath of unexplainable tragedy, people are always ready to jump aboard the gun-banning ship.
    However, that same rational person would also be hard-pressed to disagree that when the demons that drive people to homicide takeover, it is unlikely that the absence of a gun would change their minds. Disturbed and evil minds will always find a way (see Timothy McVeigh), and even if guns were banned, no one should be so deluded as to think that guns would then be immediately unavailable to them, as well.
    Secondly, I do think that someone as erudite as Mr. King surely must be able to express intelligent opinion regarding gun control without insults, name-calling, and innuendo. Not everyone who owns a gun is "gun-crazed," nor is every gun owner inviting murder by having guns in the home.
    Finally, I am sure that Rep. Louie Gohmert holds no such fantasies of Rambo principals, and he certainly does not deserve to be called a lunatic. Name-calling is little more than the last refuge of the uneducated and vocabulary-deficient.
Bill Wilson
   [Michael King replies: Two brief responses to Bill Wilson's "salient points": 1) In purpose or planning, Adam Lanza was no Timothy McVeigh, and if Lanza had not had ready and easy access to multiple weapons, he would not have been able to do what he did; 2) I quoted Louie Gohmert's explicit Rambo fantasy: "I wish to God [the principal] had had an M4 in her office locked up so when she heard gunfire, she pulls it out ... and takes his head off before he can kill those precious kids." If Wilson chooses to wish it away, it's his willful blindness, just as he's free to ignore the rest of Gohmert's persistent political lunacy. Finally, I never suggested all gun owners are "gun-crazed"; it's the gun-crazy minority that is holding the rest of us hostage to a suicidal version of the Second Amendment under which any sane regulation is anathema, and the only answer to gun crimes is more guns. Responsible gun owners have a vested interest in ending that insanity.]

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