Ms. Alberding begins by recalling the recent murder of Derrion Albert, which, because it happened to be caught on video, created an international sensation. One result was that President Obama sent Education Secretary Arne Duncan and Attorney General Eric Holder to Chicago this week to talk with students and school officials.
We welcome the opportunity to talk about a comprehensive strategy to combat youth violence. But let's remember that the beating death of Derrion is in some ways unusual.
Every week young people here and in other cities are slain. Some are beaten like Derrion but in the great majority of cases the weapon of choice is a gun. In the last two years, more than 500 Chicago Public School students have been shot.
From January through August, 152 young people have been murdered in Chicago and 80 percent were killed by guns. Any effort to reduce violence has to recognize that easy access to firearms is inextricably linked to violence involving youth.
How is it possible that pro-gun folks continue to deny that "easy access to firearms is inextricably linked to violence?" Why is it not possible for them to admit that firearm availability is a major factor, not the only factor, granted, but a major factor in violence? I would have more respect for people who say although gun availability is a problem, too bad, we have our 2nd Amendment rights. I'd have more respect if they said, I realize gun availability is bad news, but it's the price we must pay so the rest of us can enjoy our guns. But when they argue that gun availability is not a factor or not a significant factor, I find it hard to believe they really think so.
What's the solution then? Here it is according to Ellen S. Alberding.
We have to insist that anyone who buys a gun must pass a background check, so we can prevent criminals, minors and those with mental illness from getting their hands on deadly weapons.
We should increase the regulation and oversight of licensed gun dealers and call on law enforcement to trace the flow of illegal handguns and assault weapons that end up in the hands of street gangs or drug dealers.
We should stop tying the hands of federal law enforcement agencies by forbidding them to require dealer inventory checks and forcing them to destroy background check records that could be used to investigate gun crimes.
What's your opinion? Are they pretty much the same suggestions other gun control folks talk about? Is there anything wrong with these ideas? Do you think Ms. Alberding has a hidden agenda? Is she really striving to incrementally take away your rights with the eventual plan of total bans and confiscation?
What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.