Public can lead revolution in thinking about need to stop ‘arms race’

Politicians won’t act until they see a widespread shift in attitudes about the carnage caused by guns.

By Janice Cooper

YARMOUTH — Shortly after the massacre of beautiful 6- and 7-year-olds and courageous teachers in Newtown, Conn., by rapid-fire, maximum-damage bullets, I wrote an op-ed for a small Maine newspaper, titled “For the Love of Guns: A mother’s and legislator’s pledge.” Surprisingly, the commentary went almost viral and clearly touched a nerve.

A number of readers praised my piece. But I have also received angry messages from (mostly anonymous) people around the country who think that I have no business talking about the Second Amendment.

They make it clear that they view the constitutional right to bear arms as a bulwark against tyranny. It’s their protection not against intruders or black bears (although that might be handy, too) but against the government itself.

This was an eye-opener. This is certainly not true of all opponents of gun control, but if you were preparing for a revolution, of course you would oppose limits on the kinds of firearms available for sale to private buyers. For those not so inclined, what can you do to stop the arms escalation?

My “pledge” was to keep talking until Americans rethought whether homes should contain the kind of firearms used by Adam Lanza. So here I go again.

To read the full Portland Press Herald article, follow this link.

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