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Listening To Reasonable Voices

To the Editor:

In January 2013, the state’s general assembly, in response to the Sandy Hook School tragedy, formed a Bipartisan Task Force on Gun Violence Prevention and Children’s Safety to explore solutions. Many of us urged the task force to support passage of common sense gun legislation that would better protect Connecticut citizens from gun violence.

We were encouraged by overwhelming support for stricter gun laws from Connecticut citizens. The Quinnipiac University Poll found that 93 percent of Connecticut voters supported universal background checks, including 89 percent of gun owners, and 68 percent supported an expansion of an assault weapons ban and the ban on the sale of ammunition magazines of more than 10 rounds.

Connecticut legislators and Governor Malloy listened to the reasonable voices of thousands of citizens and, on April 4, 2013, signed into law a sweeping gun violence prevention reform package including a ban on sales of assault weapons and high capacity magazines; universal background checks on all firearm sales & transfers; permit requirements for long gun and ammunition purchases; and includes strengthening firearm storage requirements and penalties for firearm trafficking offenses.  As a result, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence has ranked the state of Connecticut second in the nation for having the strongest gun laws.

I would like to take this time to thank the following legislators who are on the right side of history: Senators Andres Ayala, Dante Bartolomeo , Toni Boucher, Beth Bye, Steve Cassano, Eric Coleman, Joseph Crisco, Paul Doyle, Bob Duff, Leonard Fasano , John Fonfara, L. Scott Frantz, Terry Gerratana, Joan Hartley, Gary Holder-Winfield, Kevin Kelly, Gary LeBeau, Carlo Leone, Martin Looney, John McKinney, Michael McLachlan, Edward Meyer, Anthony Musto, Gayle Slossberg, Andrea Stillman, Donald Williams and Representatives Catherine Abercrombie, James Albis, David Alexander, William Aman, Angel Arce, David Arconti, Joe Aresimowicz, Christina "Tita" Ayala, Terry Backer, David Baram, Brian Becker, Jeffrey Berger, Mitch Bolinsky, Elizabeth Boukus, Larry Butler, Lawrence Cafero, Juan Candelaria, Christie Carpino, Charles Clemons, Michelle Cook, Victor Cuevas, Michael D'Agostino, Stephen Dargan, Paul Davis, Mike Demicco, Patricia Dillon, Joe Diminico, Kim Fawcett, Andrew Fleischmann, Mae Flexer, Livvy Floren, Daniel Fox, Gerald Fox, John Frey, Mary Fritz, Henry Genga, Linda Gentile, Bob Godfrey, Minnie Gonzalez, Auden Grogins, Antonio Guerrera, Gregory Haddad, John Hampton, John "Jack" Hennessy, Ernest Hewett, DebraLee Hovey, Bryan Hurlburt , Tony Hwang, Claire Janowski, Susan Johnson, David Kiner, Themis Klarides, Noreen Kokoruda, Brenda Kupchick, Timothy Larson, Gail Lavielle, Roland Lemar, Matthew Lesser, Rick Lopes, Geoff Luxenberg, James Maroney, Brandon McGee, Robert Megna, Patricia Billie Miller, Philip Miller, Russell Morin, Bruce Morris, Edward Moukawsher, Mary Mushinsky, Sandy Nafis, Elaine O'Brien, Tom O'Dea, Arthur O'Neill, Chris Perone, Lonnie Reed, Emmett Riley, Elizabeth Ritter, Matthew Ritter, Jason Rojas, Robert Sanchez, Ezequiel Santiago, Hilda Santiago, Brian Sear, Joseph Serra, John Shaban, J. Brendan Sharkey, Richard Smith, Prasad Srinivasan, Charlie Stallworth, Jonathan Steinberg, Peter Tercyak, William Tong, Diana Urban, Edwin Vargas, Joe Verrengia, Thomas Vicino, Toni Walker, Stephen Walko, Patricia Widlitz, Roberta Willis, Terrie Wood, Christopher Wright, Elissa Wright, & Dave Yaccarino.

Po Murray

38 Charter Ridge Drive, Sandy Hook                     March 27, 2014

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And yet we see 3 of CT's biggest cities ranked in the top 10 most dangerous cities in the nation. There have been no signs of improvement either. Aside from universal background checks - every other key component of that bill does nothing to "protect Connecticut from gun violence".

I am tired of hearing these false claims that any of the laws are "gun violence prevention" because that simply is not true. There is not factual, logical or empirical data to support such bold claims. People like Po Murray have entrenched themselves so deep into their polarized political view that they live in complete denial. Defensive gun use is as common if not more common than offensive use. If assault weapon bans and magazine limits are effective, they are only going to cause more harm to those trying to keep themselves and their family safe. More realistically, they do nothing to keep people safe and simply provide the next step to further gun control. These gun control laws are similar to trying to use water to put out a grease fire. It seems natural or 'common sense' to use water to put out flames. But how long will CT dump water until they realize the fire is not going out, it's just spreading?

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