Letter I had published in The Philadelphia Inquirer on February 9. Below the link is my original draft.
of the exploitation of tragedy to malign the NRA (Wilkinson, Jan. 28).
I'm neither an NRA member nor a gun owner, but I am certain that those
who do belong in those categories are just as horrified by the deaths of
innocent people as anyone else.
The Columbia Mall in Maryland, like so many sites of similar tragedies,
was an official "gun-free zone." This did not deter a disturbed person
from arming himself and committing murder. In fact, a similar situation
in the Clackamas Mall (Portland, Ore., December 2012) came to a
premature end when the gunman was confronted by a law-abiding citizen
who happened to be armed (including a concealed carry permit).
This doesn't suggest that arming everyone is the answer, any more than stricter gun-control measures are. There are no easy answers, as much as we wish there to be.