18th century debate is no longer valid
In a recent letter, the writer said of the Newtown shooting that sole blame should go to the shooter and his mother. He wrote that banning assault rifles will not stop this, and the Second Amendment is intended to protect us from our government, comparing this to massacred Syrian rebels less armed than the military.
Public safety regulations do not negate risk, they reduce it. Seat belt use did not stop fatalities, it reduced them. With less access to assault rifles and large ammo clips, the risk of multiple deaths does not go away, it is reduced. We live in a society with laws intended to promote the general welfare. We live with restrictions every day, with little or no complaint. Giving up the right of the general public to own assault weapons in return for decreased risk of mass killings, I believe, is a reasonable response.
As for the Second Amendment argument, the citizenry would need quite a bit of firepower to stand against our 21st century U.S. military. You cannot use an 18th century debate to justify unlimited public access to weapons of mass destruction.