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This morning, at least 33 people died in the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. Eight hours later, the City Paper got its first press release from a group using the tragedy to make a point, District of Columbia Independents for Citizen Control. Its point? “See, D.C. shouldn’t have guns, either!” There will be press releases tomorrow morning, from pro-gun groups arguing that the victims should have been armed, from psychiatric experts who are available to shed light on the shooter’s motivations, what the victims are going through, and so on.
If anyone needs me, I’m moving to Mars. Today’s most tasteless press release (which includes a photo of the group’s head, for crying out loud) follows the jump.
MONDAY 16 APRIL 2007
TO: DC and US Media
FROM: Dennis Moore, Chairperson, District of Columbia Independents for Citizen Control (DCICC)
ABOUT: Virginia Tech and Opponents of D.C.’s Gun Ban
www. DC Independents.org
Good Afternoon All,
For those still in denial about guns owned or in the hands of unpredictably unstable individuals, need only read this week’s headlines. In as much as the U.S. Constitution affirms our right to own arms, it simultaneously does not infer that anyone and everyone should have guns without a legal need. Virginia Tech, one of America’s most prestigious engineering colleges, is not immune to the acts of a demented mind possessing a combat grade firearm.
The tragedy in relatively peaceful Blacksburg, Virginia is a another cautionary tale for opponents of D.C.’s tough gun restrictions. The District of Columbia is certainly not devoid of random and sudden shootings by individuals with unknown standards of responsibility and mental stability. The District’s ban on gun ownership, the strongest and most civilized in America, must remain.
In a capital city with numerous levels of security concerns, only trained police and security professionals should own guns. Any District resident that wants to take a stroll a on warm day or night deserves as much assurance against being shot as a public official walking to their government office. Individuals with inflated perceptions of danger or personal rights have no justifiable right to have a gun. The mounting deaths and injuries at a pastoral institution for learning took away any argument favoring personal gun ownership.
The case for a tighter gun ban throughout the United States has been affirmed by the tragic murder and maiming of innocent students and faculty on a quiet college campus. In a stress-ridden urban environment like the Nation’s Capital, the Supreme Court should first and foremost interpret the Constitution for the greater good and safety of American lives. The best balance between real citizen rights and genuine public safety in a gun riddled society is made when a strict ban enables us to randomly walk our streets and campuses without taking a bullet.
Dennis Moore, Chairperson,
District of Columbia Independents for Citizen Control (DCICC)
firstname.lastname@example.org , email@example.com