Joe Moran: Nothing gained from Newtown

December 21, 2013 

Nicholas Kristof’s Dec. 19 column “Killer supports gun control” on guns in America could not have stated it more clearly: “More Americans have died from guns here in the United States since 1970 (nearly 1.4 million) than American soldiers have died in all the wars in our country’s history over more than 200 years (1.2 million).”

After the Newtown massacre, President Obama and more than 75 percent of the American public clamored for stricter controls on guns. What happened? Politicians, worried about their chances of re-election and cowered by the NRA, shrunk from even common sense and reasonable legislation. The NRA went on to prescribe its own answer to gun violence: more guns! Lots more! Everywhere!

One of the Scriptures read in some churches in the days following Christmas tells of the slaughter of innocent children in Bethlehem, after Jesus’ birth, by King Herod. The writer reminds Jewish readers of Rachel, the mother of Joseph and Benjamin, “weeping for her children, because they are no more.”

Weeping, we are held hostage by the myth that more guns make us safer. Must we wait another 40 years and another few million American casualties before we grasp how illogical this syllogism is?

Joe Moran, Durham

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