2008-05-23 / Editorial/Opinion

Halting Gun Violence

There have been seven people killed or wounded by gun violence in the Far Rockaway community in the past week. Two young people, 15 and 17-years-of-age, have died. Five others were shot and badly wounded. Unfortunately, this is not a new story. The last time we had a spate of shootings at the end of 2006, several people died as well. What else can we expect when young men with guns in their waistbands and hate in their hearts use those guns to settle petty beefs or to extend or defend their "territory." There has to be a national law and an effective methodology that stops guns from getting into the hands of thugs. Guns are too easy to get and it seems to be getting easier all the time. A Rockaway resident can drive to Pennsylvania or Virginia, pay a local to buy some guns and then bring them back to Rockaway. That must stop. We need a comprehensive gun control bill written by representatives who have the guts to buck the NRA. Until there is a sea change in the triangle of drugs, guns, and violence that infects our poorest communities, taking guns out of peoples' hands is the only real way to collapse this tragic triangle and achieve any substantive progress in reducing violent crime.

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