To the editor:

In a recent editorial published in the Times, the NRA is branded the big, bad guy while students, propped up by billionaire Michael Bloomberg and his mouthpiece, Shannon Watts, are celebrated as heroes. The article makes several false claims in its push for gun control legislation that would do almost nothing to stop deaths from firearms but would infringe on the rights of Americans. It also claims that the NRA has “won every battle, against every party, every organization and every mass shooting.” This sentence is a flagrant lie as the recent laws passed in Florida, California, Washington and now Congress show. 

While the article praises those teenagers that are being used as props for gun control groups, there is very little in the media about students that are opposed to more gun control laws. How many of the Times’ readers heard about students in Hilliard, Ohio, New Prague, Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, or elsewhere that were punished by school officials or attacked for having pro-second amendment views?

The “assault weapons” ban that this article pushes would have very little effect on violent crimes. Actual assault weapons are already controlled by the Hughes Amendment and National Firearms Act of 1934. The firearms that these new bans are focused on are used in a tiny percentage of crimes while being some of the most popular rifles in the U.S.

There are between 8.5 and 20 million rifles meeting the gun-grabber’s “assault rifle” definition in the U.S., yet in 2016, only 374 homicides were by any rifle. Consider that in the same year, 656 murders were by fists or feet, and more than 250,000 people died from physician error. Where is the outcry for more physician oversight? In 2015 (the most recent year with complete data), 2,715 teenagers (ages 13-19) died in car crashes while 1,278 teenagers died from murders using any weapon. If the leftist line “If it saves one life …” is to be believed, then why is there no outpouring of demands for more traffic regulations and limits to who can drive?

Law-abiding Americans use firearms every day to protect themselves and their families, and do so more frequently than firearms are used in crimes. The fact that there are so many of these weapons in the U.S. and that they are used so infrequently in crimes is a testimony to the law-abiding gun owners and their trustworthiness in keeping and bearing these arms. The same facts show the duplicity of gun-grabbers who go after these “dangerous black rifles” yet claim “no one wants to confiscate your guns.” Small steps backward are how liberties are lost. I urge you to write Sen. Roberts, Sen. Moran and Rep. Jenkins to remind them to reject any legislation that restricts the rights and liberties of Americans.