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Gun Controls

Despite two tragedies and two scandals of momentous impact there seems little likelihood that the United States will move to control mail order sale of firearms.

Although the slaying of Dr. Martin Luther King paralleled in many respects the murder of President John F. Kennedy, Congress seems disinclined to believe that additional firearms control would be a preventative.

There is at this time a bill which would place a federal ban on mail order sale of firearms by limiting their interstate sale and shipment to federally licensed dealers. The King murder is said to have changed dramatically the emotional atmosphere, particularly in Washington, concerning gun controls, yet the course to be followed remains indistinct.

Under the proposed bill individuals would have to buy handguns, shotguns and rifles in their state of residence from licensed retailers. But this in no conceivable way could deter madmen from committing murder.

Certainly there should be some more effective way to prevent the kind of tragedy which has blackened twice the public image of America. But who is to say that both of these murders could not have been accomplished in some other way? Firearms, lethal and dangerous as they may be, are not the sole means to a dastardly deed. Many a good man has been slain by knife, even a vial of poison. Shooting is a convenience, yet not an exclusive.

Firearms, nevertheless, should be sold, owned and used under strict regulation, perhaps involving both state and nation. And firearms sold by mail order firms should be distributed only under laws governing the sale of firearms in states to which they are being shipped. Even this is not guarantee that guns will not be used for illicit purposes.

A more effective means to the desired ends is to legislate control of those inclined to do evil. But this is no simpler than controlling the weapons they use. The only way out of the forest of murder and lawlessness is to destroy the roots of the menace now at large in American society. Two admired, important and politically influential men have been slain. And for what reason? Merely because they were admired, important and politically influential. These were the causes of death. Guns were merely the instruments leading to it.

(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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There is currently no available "Beginner" label. The following is the default level label: After the assassinations of President John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr., calls were made for controls on the mail order purchase of guns. This editorial comments that restrictions on gun sales would not necessarily prevent assassinations as the person who is committed to killing a public figure could find an alternate means to accomplish the deed. A bill was passed which outlawed the mail order sale of rifles and shotguns shipped directly to the consumer. Up until this law, rifles or shotguns could be ordered by mail with only the statement that the consumer was over 18.

 

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"Gun Controls" editorial in Greenfield Recorder newspaper

publisher   Greenfield Recorder
date   Apr 19, 1968
location   Greenfield, Massachusetts
width   4.5"
height   6.0"
process/materials   printed paper, ink
item type   Periodicals/Newspaper
accession #   #L08.012


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See Also...

"Civil Rights Report" cartoon from Greenfield Recorder newspaper

"Black Tragedy-" editorial from Greenfield Recorder newspaper

"Drama Vs. Reality" editorial from Greenfield Recorder-Gazette newspaper


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