Clearly, the United States needs effective, enforceable gun control. But guns don’t kill people, bullets do.
NBC News has reported there are an estimated 300 million guns in the United States. Most are owned by law abiding and responsible citizens. The guns used in Sandy Hook, Connecticut, were legally purchased and registered. In fact, Connecticut is considered one of the strictest gun control states in the nation.
But if Adam Lanza, had not been able to easily purchase a large quantity of ammunition packaged for rapid firing from those guns, 20 kindergarteners would be alive today. Their parents would be preparing for Santa Claus instead of funerals.
President Obama should issue an Executive Order TODAY that places immediate, absolute limits on the type and quantity of ammunition that can be purchased at-retail by an individual.
I’m not sure that the President has the constitutional authority to act without Congress, but the situation is too urgent and the danger to our children too great to wait. Besides, not even the shooting of one of their own colleagues, former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), was enough to stir Congress to act.
The executive order could save lives today. Without ammunition cartridges that shoot a spray of bullets, (the type used in Connecticut, Oregon and Colorado), none of these crazy young men could have hit the broad side of a proverbial barn.
Simultaneously, the president should reach out to the technology community and ask its leaders to cooperatively develop a cloud-based Ammunition Sale Registry and deploy it by the end of January 2013. The registry would prevent anyone from circumventing the restrictions on ammunition purchases by visiting multiple retailers.
Restricting access to large quantities of ammunition is only the first step in a longer discussion about gun control in the United States.
We can have the broader debate at some leisure after we've stopped the immediate slaughter.
If you agree with me, I urge you to contact the White House, your elected representatives and urge immediate action.