Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Letter to my US Reps -- Gun Control and Mental Illness

Dear Honorable -----, 

As a former local and federal law enforcement officer, as well as a military veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, I strongly oppose any ban on high capacity magazines or so-called military or assault-style firearms.

As a combat veteran, there is no one who hates and opposes violence more than I do. But, I am also experienced enough in law enforcement to know that banning guns or high capacity magazines will not reduce crime or gun violence. Banning firearms or magazines usurps the freedoms and liberty of those who obey the law -- those who wish to protect themselves and their families. Criminals do not obey the law.

From shooting sports to hunting, and from firearms collection to self-defense, I urge you to please oppose any and all legislation designed to stop millions of law-abiding citizens from gun or magazine ownership.

The facts revolving around the terrible incidents at the most recent school shooting were incorrect. There was no so-called military assault-style weapon used in the school, and the gun in the trunk of the subject's vehicle was not in the AR family of rifles. To me, it appeared to be a shotgun.

There are so many more facts needing to be addressed, like the annual FBI uniform crime report, which shows that more people were bludgeoned to death by hammers and clubs than were killed by rifles; and that banning firearms does not make an area safer. For instance, Chicago has had more firearms violence than in many years past. On the corollary, Florida concealed carry permits are up and the violence is down. These are just two brief examples of reasons to allow law-abiding citizens to continue to own, purchase, use, sell or transfer firearms according to the laws currently in place.

Certainly many things ought to be done to help our society become less violent. Strengthening the most fundamental unit of society -- the family -- will help alleviate many social ills. Avoiding and prohibiting violence that our children are exposed to in the media and in video games will do much more to help control violence than any attempt to "control" guns. After all, whether using a claw hammer or an illegally purchased or stolen firearm, the criminal element will not be entirely stopped unless his mind and heart can be changed.

In sum, I plead with you to help design, support and sustain any legislation that supports and strengthens traditional family units while allowing law-abiding veterans like myself to keep and bear arms. Moreover, please be cautious about measures or legislation that may be introduced that may negatively impact veterans (or citizens) who suffer from PTSD from legally owning firearms. As a founder Warrior SOS, I have talked with many veterans about PTSD. Having PTSD is not like what Hollywood says it is. It may be classified as a "mental illness", but this certainly does not mean that veterans who suffer from this will go "crazy" and begin shooting up kindergarten classrooms, as horrible as that comparison sounds.

Thank you very much for your time.

Very Respectfully,

Jeffrey Denning

1 comment:

TRS said...

Amen, brother!!! Nice catching up with you today!!!