John Traphagan, a professor of religious studies and anthropology at the University of Texas, wrote the following in response to recent incidents:
There is no need for a civilized society to tolerate the type of gun-related violence that Americans seem to accept as normal. The solution to gun-related crime isn’t further arming the public. It involves enacting comprehensive gun control laws that prohibit many forms of gun ownership, significantly curtailing or eliminating access to and the ability to purchase guns, and implementing programs in which the government confiscates or purchases illegal guns already in circulation among the public.
For those firearms that are legal, ownership should be tied not only to background checks, but to extensive and mandatory training in the safe use and storage of weapons.
In an era of extreme concern about national security, Americans need to recognize that one of the greatest threats to national security is their own heavily armed population. Unfortunately, our proven inability to handle widespread gun ownership suggests strongly that the way to do this is to deeply restrict access to and ownership of most types of guns.
Americans should ask themselves whether they want to live in a society that’s secure because everyone is ready to shoot one another, or one that’s secure because people have peace of mind and experience freedom from violence.
You can read the full piece at the Republic Broadcasting Network.