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Gun safety is a local issue. When you hear a parent say that her six-year-old was crying because she did not want to go to school, then we all need to pay attention. The child was refusing to wear her new sneakers, which lit up, because she was afraid that she and her friends would be found in hiding if there was a shooter in their school. Yes, this is real. I have also heard adolescents say that each morning, depending on their schedule, they plan a place where they can take cover if they need to. Is this the new reality for our children, or are we going to stand up with the youth of our nation and do something about it?
The youth in our community organized and participated in marches and vigils in our local towns in recent weeks. They don’t care about partisan politics or why gun lobby groups are allowed to dictate policy and block reform legislation. They simply want us to take responsibility to stop the violence. In this legislative session, we can close dangerous loopholes that increase the risk of guns falling into the wrong hands. We can take action now to prevent the sale of bump stocks, which convert semi-automatic firearms into fully automatic weapons, and to regulate ghost guns, which can be purchased online. Yes, even a 14 year-old can evade Connecticut gun laws to purchase a weapon.
House Bills 5540 and 5542 are intended to promote gun safety in our community. State Senator Art Linares, Jr. (R-33) and State Representative Robert Siegrist (R-36) must take a position on gun safety legislation. Action is power. I encourage your readers to call or write these legislators and ask them to support our local youth by voting “Yes” on these bills.
Claire M. Walsh
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