Guns and domestic violence

  • Published in Letters

To The Editor:

I grew up in Vermont and I grew up with guns. My father was a competitive marksman, a gun collector and his own gunsmith. He made his own ammunition and hunted for a good part of his life. Dad's guns, unloaded, were locked in a gun cabinet and his ammo stored separately. Both were not in family areas. I feel that guns and their capabilities often do not have the respect they warrant. My dad and I have been shot at while hunting. I have personally lost a teenager on the operating table of a gunshot wound to his liver. The two boys were playing with a set of loaded dueling pistols.

I personally believe that the Second Amendment is an anachronism. Penned in 1791 to arm a militia to maintain the security of a free state, it has outgrown its usefulness and has instead become an excuse to arm up with advanced weaponry. What would our forefathers have inked if they were seers?

In1791 guns were single-shot muzzleloaders. It took time and effort for each shot. The multi-shot Colt pistol appeared in 1835, the repeating rifle in1860 and the automatic rifle in 1903. It became easier and easier to obtain high-tech arms and to kill intentionally or unintentionally.

I am with Representative Grad for confiscation of guns in household cases of domestic abuse. I believe that humans have enough ways to harm each other physically and mentally without adding guns to the violence of domestic abuse often already fueled by alcohol and drugs.

An emerging story in the NYT on March 23: family of six, 9-year-old boy dead of a gunshot wound to the head; the father a convicted felon with a gun and ammo illegally in the house. The case is being treated as a homicide with both parents taken into custody.

Stephanie Barnes
Waitsfield