Friday, March 8, 2013


The Second Amendment:  'A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.'

Recently, I have read a lot of references to the protection that guns provide Americans in their homes.

America has twenty times the amount of gun violence of other industrialized nations. If you look at the actual data, all this gun ownership in America does is increase our rates of gun violence.

Statistics show that having a gun in the home actually raises the chances that someone in that home will be killed by gun violence 3-fold, and the numbers are even worse for women. (NEJM 10/93).

The second amendment was written at a time when the U.S. had no standing army and muskets were the norm. In today’s environment of assault rifles, extended clips, and hand-guns, the idea that there should be free-access to these ‘weapons of mass destruction’ is ridiculous.

If people are so vehement about protecting their civil liberties, perhaps they should be less accepting of the erosion of our civil rights encompassed in the ironically-named Patriot Act (and it’s extensions) or the use of drones to target and kill U.S. citizens.

I applaud the Maryland Senate for passing gun legislation that will reasonably:

Require buyers to provide fingerprints, complete safety training, obtain a license, and undergo background checks before purchasing guns;
Restrict purchases of military style semi automatic weapons and limit the capacity of ammunition magazines to 10 rounds;
Give state police the authority to suspend and revokes the license of gun dealers who sell guns to criminals or otherwise violate Maryland law;
Prevent individuals who suffer from mental illness and are a danger to themselves or others from having access to firearms.

It is disappointing to say the least, that two of our local delegates don’t support such common-sense rules for gun ownership.

Kent Ozkum

NB: I should note that we do own one rifle on Whitmore Farm which we use for killing groundhogs and to euthanize sick animals.