Letter: Tell gun nuts to stand aside, make room for progress

To the editor:

Another horrible school shooting and the reactions are predictable — politicians posturing about token tinkering with background checks and gun nuts posturing that we need more good people with guns even in the schools. Most of the rest of us keep wringing our hands and pray for some sort of miracle.

We all are ignoring the elephant in the room — this country is awash with military-style, combat weapons and testosterone cowboys toting them. No one needs an assault rifle or a 17-cartridge pistol except a combat soldier on active duty. We are not living in the nineteenth century Wild West, but it sure feels like it.

I am a life member of the NRA, an NRA rifle and pistol expert and a former president of a large rifle and pistol club. I grew up hunting with my father. For most of my life we could not purchase military weapons, even imports, unless the Army approved their release. We also could not carry concealed weapons in most states. That did not disturb my family of hunters, my rifle and pistol club members or even the NRA. We had pretty good gun laws and few detractors.

I am disgusted with the current NRA gun nuts, especially the talk-show interpreters of the Constitution. Their massive campaign contributions and bullying propaganda are road blocks to sensible legislation and enforcement to take back our streets and neighborhoods.

Our legislators and law enforcement need to quit quaking when the NRA speaks and get some backbone to eliminate military weapons among us and loaded guns away from thoughtless parents. That would not hurt hunters or marksmen anywhere, only the gun nuts who need to be told to get out of the way of progress on this problem.

Donald A. Smith