Make gun safety a high priority

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The slaughter of innocents at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., sickened me and moved me to do something I had not done in a long time.

I e-mailed and wrote my elected officials, urging them to vote for more stringent gun control. I have six school-aged grandchildren and one on the way, so what happened at Sandy Hook could have happened in any of their schools and possibly still could in the future.

Call me naive or optimistic, but I believe sound public policy can create positive changes and that there are several steps that should be considered to limit gun violence. First, require annual registration fees for all guns. The National Firearms Act needs to be revised to require registration for all guns with a window of a one year to register all previously unregistered guns.

Enact federal law for annual registration fees or taxation of all guns, which has been tried before (SB-2099). If we had a $200 registration fee per gun per year — shared at the federal, state and local levels — it might fund mandated safety training for all registered gun owners, boost the resources of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to monitor and better control illegal gun trafficking and provide additional support for our state and local police.

We pay annual registration fees for the use of our vehicles, so why not guns? Mandated safety training seems to be in order. Rule No. 1 when I learned to shoot guns as a kid was not to point guns at people. With more than 9,000 people being killed in America per year by guns, maybe it is time for mandated safety training.

Gun manufacturers should develop smart technology to recognize palm prints or develop some smart technology to activate an automatic safety mechanism on guns so they cannot be used by anyone other than the registered owner.

They could move into the market niche of gun safety training and safety technology. Regulatory safety measures and entrepreneurial technology may provide some reconciliation of the right to bear arms.

None of the above will prohibit the recreational gun enthusiast or seasoned hunter from using their guns and may even make things a little safer for their children, too.

Andrew Buck


Updated 2:40 am, January 11, 2013
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Reader feedback

Lou from Bayside says:
Naive, no Stupid! You put your faith in the ATF! The same ATF involved in fast and furious which placed guns in the hands of Mexican drug lords and in turn ended up killing hundreds of people including a federal officer. Sure more government regulation and fees, just what we need! That will solve the problem! Your wonderful govt operatives have killed in the last year over 170 children in Pakistan with their armed drones! Who cries for those kids! 4000 babies are destroyed everyday through abortion! Who cries for them! Want reasons , guns are needed! Hitler,Stalin,Mao,Bloomberg Just to name a few! You are sir an idiot!
Jan. 13, 2013, 5:52 am
Phil from Queens says:
Wow more taxes you want! This country was built on guns and when guns are outlawed, only the outlaws will have them.

Think about this - guns just like fireworks, are illegal in NY; they are both already illegal do you really think more laws will stop the crackhead with that illegal saturday night special? Do you think the laws stop the noisy neighbors on the 4th of July?

Your elected officials should be pushing for more strict enforcement of the existing gun laws, reinforcing the GunStoppers Program with higher rewards to get the illegal guns out of the hands of criminals and off the streets, not by targeting the gun license holders who only want to go to the range or hunt.
Jan. 14, 2013, 9:12 am
Vik from Brooklyn says:
Non-technical people should Stay The F out of the discussion. By non-technical, i mean anyone who doesn't know how things work. Lou already commented on how the ATF works, so I won't go down that road, he did a good job of it.

The best way to improve anything is to remove government from it. Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, Explosives should be a convenience store, not a government agency. I'm sick of hearing the term "off the streets"-- I walk on streets every day and have yet to find a gun on them, or even see one unless a cop is wearing it.

Annual registration? I'm a law abiding citizen who is retired military and former law enforcement, I wouldn't pay it, for one thing the government already gets way too much of my money, for another I wouldn't register my guns, that's what Hitler (Et Al) did before they took them up.

More money taxing guns?? Are you rich? It sounds like it.

See, rich bobbleheaded idiots like Bloomberg, Obama, Biden and the rest of that crowd pay people to carry guns for them.

You are wanting to tax gun ownership out of reach of poor people, who cannot afford to pay arrogant thugs to carry weapons for them. How dare you spout such arrant nonsense, since you obviously have no idea how things work? I'm an armorer (look it up), I know how guns work, at least.

Palm print? Sensors? Smart guns?? Another ploy to increase the cost of guns and take them from the poor. There is nothing you could put on a gun to make it not work that I (or the average person) couldn't defeat and make it work without it in just a few minutes. They are not much more complicated than a mousetrap and just about as easy to work on.

I'm not rich, I want guns, too.
March 13, 2013, 12:29 pm

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