EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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January 17, 2013

Letter:

To the editor:

“Until we make the penalties for using a gun during the commission of a crime so severe that even low-wattage criminal types think twice before doing so, we can expect little improvement in crime rates for our gun-control efforts.”

The above statement, taken from yesterday’s editorial, makes good sense. I wish it had been the lead statement of the editorial instead of the conclusion. Does The Eagle-Tribune really support this idea? If so, I hope you will continue to emphasize the good sense it represents. Perhaps even gun advocates will be able to support the idea of stiff penalties for using a gun during a crime.

An automobile is powerful and potentially dangerous but for over a century Americans have accepted legislation designed to regulate and control automobile use. A car can go well over 100 mph but that speed is illegal on public roads. Americans support age limits, insurance requirements, health restrictions, traffic signals, speed limits, safety belts, child seats and other regulations formulated to alleviate the dangers inherent in a large, fast vehicle accessible to every citizen.

Why are some Americans so violently against common sense safety regulations for gun use? I have read that the NRA has 4 million members. I wish 5 million Americans would write letters — real paper letters with stamps — to Washington to support sensible gun control legislation, including the above idea suggested in The Eagle-Tribune editorial today.

Anne Ericson

North Andover

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