This hunter is for freedom

  Dear HCN,

As a hunter, I find opinions like those of Ali Macalady nauseating (HCN, 11/6/00). "Hunters for Gun Control?" I wonder if she's not a "plant," a leftist radical posing as a hunter. If she's really a hunter, she should be aware that the gun-grabbers will never be satisfied with banning handguns and semi-automatic rifles, or with gun registration. As soon as they succeed in getting one antigun law passed, they immediately begin demanding even more legislation restricting the rights of gun owners. They won't be satisfied until virtually all guns are outlawed, and they have admitted as much in candid statements.

They wanted "reasonable gun control" in Great Britain and Australia, but now citizens of those countries are lucky to be able to keep a bolt-action .22 rifle or a single-shot shotgun, and antigunners would like to ban them, too.

Don't blame guns for the Columbine tragedy. There was plenty of evidence that the two mental cases who committed the crime were in need of serious investigation. Plus they were apparently the victims of bullying, which must be halted in the schools. The cult of sports often almost encourages some obnoxious athletes to feel that they can get away with almost anything. This will stop when this type of person is booted off the team, rather than being placated.

If guns caused crime, states like Montana would have very high rates of violent crime. But instead, it has very low rates; Montana's 1998 murder rate was just over two per 100,000, compared to the national average of over six per 100,000. And Vermont is the safest state in the nation, according to a recent survey of key crime statistics; Vermont also has a very unrestrictive firearms policy: a citizen may carry a gun for any reason except to commit a crime, with no fees or registration.

Gun owners and hunters don't need more gun control - they need criminal control.

Howard Jubatum
Missoula, Montana

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