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Reader's Forum
America’s gun problem
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Re: Americans want stronger gun laws
Editor:

I am the mother of a 12-year-old child who was shot and killed 18 months ago by another child. One of thousands of children who die by the hands of another every year with firearms. America has a massive gun problem.

The crisis is especially serious for children. In one year, firearms killed no children in Japan, 19 in Great Britain, 109 in France, 153 in Canada, and 5,285 children in the U.S. For every child killed in the U.S. by a gun, four more are wounded for each. Do the math – that is 14.47 children a day. Yet, the nation’s response to this death toll has been minimal and little has changed in the protecting of our most precious children.

You can read in the paper every day of a shooting or listen to the news. And then the next day it becomes old news, and nothing seems to be done about the serious issue of gun violence. I have written to every senator and representative here in Florida, with not much response. It seems that the word gun-control or

gun-violence and children, are “taboo.”

Then we have a woman being considered to be put into the Florida’s Hall of Fame named Marion Hammer from the NRA. She is being considered for helping Florida and our children? By a big eagle cartoon? How about when Sen. Betty Holzendorf proposed a bill for secured firearms/minors that was introduced in 2001 and it died in the Senate in 2002? She was in a high rank then, was she not? Where was Hammer on that issue then for the better of Florida?

The NRA has no interest in the safety of people and children. If they did so, wouldn’t you think they and Hammer would be helping to pass safety devices on firearms? And Governor Bush, the statement he made in the article, saying I think she is so cool, has he lost any of his children, or family members to a gun violence? Has he ever seen what a gunshot can do to a child’s face? Maybe he needs to, and then would he still think that Hammer and the NRA are just too cool?

I have seen what a gun will do to a child’s face – that child was my 12-year-old son. People will say that I am just another grieving mother, and they are absolutely right. I will grieve for the rest of my life, as other parents have and unfortunately will. But I am also an angry mother that knows the difference from right and wrong. I am a parent with common sense.

Attorney General Charlie Crist, who is supposed to have the people of Florida in his best interest, also considers Hammer to receive this fame. Does this have anything to do with running to be our next governor? Or does he really not care or not aware about the crime rate in Florida that continues to rise. Shame on the people who think this woman has served Florida and deserves this award. Or should I say, shame on whoever is having the powerful NRA as their friend and political backer in the future.

Jeanne Caroline
Largo
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Tampa Bay Newspapers
9911 Seminole Blvd.,
Seminole, FL 33772
Phone: (727) 397-5563
Fax: (727) 397-5900
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