We Regulate Toys, So Why Not Guns?

Nicholas Kristof: Better laws would be the greatest tribute of all
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2011 11:54 AM CST
File photo of a Glock.   (PRNewsFoto/GLOCK, Inc.)

(Newser) – Nicholas Kristof makes his case for stricter gun control today in the New York Times, but not before laying out his credentials first: He's "an Oregon farm boy" who got a .22 for his 12th birthday and still shoots occasionally—meaning he's no "city slicker" alarmist who thinks all guns are evil. But really, he wonders, does it make sense that someone like Jared Lee Loughner—with documented troubles like these—could pick up a Glock and a 33-round clip so easily?

"To protect the public, we regulate cars and toys, medicines and mutual funds," Kristof writes. "So, simply as a public health matter, shouldn’t we take steps to reduce the toll from our domestic arms industry?" The stats don't lie: America has a ton of guns and, consequently, way too many gun-related deaths. He rounds up a slew of remedies—from limiting purchases to one a month so as to curb trafficking to banning oversized magazines. Speeches are nice, but "the best memorial would be to regulate firearms every bit as seriously as we regulate automobiles or toys."

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