Letter: Start demanding common sense gun legislation

Published 8:30 pm Friday, March 31, 2023

My goal in writing to you today is to ask why we are not doing more to prevent gun violence in our country? Why are we endangering the lives of our citizens on a daily basis? Why can citizens acquire firearms so easily, including assault rifles? All these inquiries are infuriating because they seem to defy common sense on every possible level.

I grew up in South Dakota and was raised in a family that used and stored firearms responsibly. My dad hunted ducks and pheasants. Any firearms and ammunition in our home were stored securely and treated with the utmost respect and seriousness. My brother chose to hunt with my dad and did so when he was of legal age to do so and completed hunter’s safety training. Where has responsible use of firearms shifted to a free for all that is poorly regulated, poorly legislated and harms so many on a daily basis? According to the New England Journal of Medicine, firearms are the leading cause of death in children and adolescents in the United States.

We allow many measures to ensure public safety, but we are ignoring the devastation firearms are allowed to create in our country. When did the idea of personal freedoms and rights start to interfere with basic safety? Why is nobody taking accountability for these massive shortcomings that kill people, including our children in schools?

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As an educator, parent and concerned citizen, I’m appalled that we are allowing this firearm debacle to keep playing out. Please take a stand, protect the people of our country and start demanding common sense gun legislation.

Raissa Hinueber
Albert Lea