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BELLEVUE, WA – Two leading national gun rights organizations are calling for the creation of a national commission to study the causes of violence in America, and offer possible preventive measures.
The Second Amendment Foundation and Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms said that a national dialogue on violence has already begun in the wake of the Sandy Hook school tragedy, but that a national commission would be more able to address the complexity of this dilemma.
“If we don’t identify and get at the root causes of violence,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan M. Gottlieb of Bellevue, Washington, “it won’t matter how many guns you ban, you will still have violence. There were no guns around when Cain slew Abel, and throughout recorded history, mankind has engaged in considerable violence. Only in the past two centuries have firearms played a historic significance.”
“Connecticut already has laws regulating firearms and even modern semi-automatic rifles,” noted SAF President Joseph Tartaro of Buffalo, New York. “They did not prevent what happened in Newtown, any more than Norway’s laws, or Germany’s or Russia’s prevented some of the recent mass murders in those countries.
“If the public policy debate which is sure to follow,” Tartaro continued, “focuses solely on gun law solutions and ignores all the other key questions, we will have done a disservice to the memories of all the victims of such madness in Connecticut, in Colorado, in Oregon, or anywhere else.”
Both gun rights leaders noted that violence is a problem in the United States, and “we need to solve it.”
“Gun owners are like anyone else,” Gottlieb observed. “We have families, we have children and grandchildren. We want to keep them safe. We walk the same streets as any other citizen, and many gun owners have decided to protect themselves and their families. Our rights as gun owners should not be sacrificed in the interest of providing the illusion that ‘something’ is being done.
“Any meaningful discussion on violence,” Gottlieb added, “would need to include mental health, violent video games, television shows and films, media malpractice that sensationalizes violence and the dangerously false sense of security created by so-called ‘gun-free zones’.”
“If we have a debate,” Tartaro concluded, “let’s make it a broad and meaningful one.”