Responding on gun debate: Real hunters use rifles

I feel the need to answer the Op Ed by Ethan Duncan that appeared in the Shelburne News on March 22.

It is disheartening to read such a mistaken dialogue.

Ethan Duncan makes dogmatic statement that are contrary to facts. I don’t know of anyone or read anything that says that there is a public outcry to “ban” guns. Nothing can be further from the truth. The outcry is to ban military-style “killing weapons” with large magazines, guns that do not belong in the hands of untrained civilians.

A case in point is the poster I just saw posted on Facebook of a hunter stating that he has hunted for 60 years, been a republican for 50 years and never shot 17 deer at once, followed by “BAN assault weapons.” Real hunters use rifles, not AR-15s and do not fear their banning. Neither do I as a veteran of WWII trained in the use of lethal weapons. I have owned two rifles for most of my life and never worried about their confiscation.

Duncan’s contention that these killing machines are necessary for us to defend our nation from government tyranny is so out of date; our National Guard and Armed Forces are there to do just that. And if the “reasoning” is that we need military-style guns to defend ourselves in case the government, which controls the military, becomes tyrannical, what chance does a citizenry armed with such weapons stands against tanks and other lethal weapons in the control of the military.

On the other hand, if a president attempts to become a dictator, the hope is that the military would disobey the “Commander in Chief” and intervene, as it should, to preserve our democracy. A present example is that we do have now a president, far from the left-leaning Duncan seems to fear, who acts like a dictator and would like nothing better than to be one if he could.

The 2nd Amendment is very clear in its wording: “A well regulated militia,” etc. There is nothing well-regulated in those carrying guns in our homes and streets.

AR-15 and handguns are not the best defense against a home invasion. The homeowner handling them may not be trained in their use and miss or inflict minor wounds. Just listen to the daily news in which police officers, trained in the use of handguns, shoot many bullets that do not reach their target.

On the other hand, a shotgun only needs to be aimed at the aggressor to disembowel him or her. Shotguns are the most feared weapon by those with intentions to harm us.

Duncan also makes several statements without quoting the source. This is always suspicious; it is so easy to use your own convictions and to make them appear as if they were facts.

Anyone is entitled to his/her own opinion, and we should respect that right, but let’s also respect facts and make a concerted effort to learn about them before going off uninformed.

Henri de Marne

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