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Background check useless if gun buyer isn’t on the list

The Adam Zyglis editorial cartoon blaming the National Rifle Association’s supposed burying of gun background check legislation for the Navy Yard shooting deaths ignores the fact that the shooter heeded Joe Biden’s suggestion to buy a shotgun and, in doing so from a licensed dealer, underwent a federal background check. Because his name was not in the system, not on the “no-buy” list so to speak, he was sold the gun.

This illustrates one of the main problems in this tragic affair, which is why, in spite of his gun related run-ins with the law, the shooter was never put on the “no-buy” list. All the background checks in the world won’t stop a legal purchase if a dangerous person is not on the “no-buy” list. By the way, those background checks won’t stop the vast majority of criminals who kill people in gang or drug-related shootings who get their guns illegally on the black market.

On the opposite page from Zyglis’ cartoon, Leonard Pitts goes on another of his anti-gun rants about how there are just too many guns around. All I will say is first he should read “More Guns, Less Crime” by John Lott, which shows that states with shall-issue concealed carry laws have lower crime rates than states that don’t, and the main reason is those concealed carry laws. Second, I’ll point to Vermont, a liberal state with the fewest, most liberal gun laws in the country and the lowest murder rate of all the states. In the end it isn’t the gun laws or the lack of them that drives violent crime, but the culture of the persons involved.

Douglas Kreinheder

Cattaraugus