Nov 19 2013

OPINION: Gun Controls Needed Now

What is our legacy?

As a Boomer, the date, 11/22/63, marked my coming-of-age – and an entire generation’s for that matter.  How could it not?  Much like 9/11/01 has marked our children, the day President Kennedy was shot changed our perception of certainty and safety and morality irrevocably.  Our steadfast beliefs in a handsome and charming president and his elegant wife, running a strong and righteous country that made the world a better place were shattered around 12:30 Central Standard Time on that November day.

Whether it was two bullets that hit the president and wounded then Texas Governor John Connally, as the Warren Commission concluded – or more, as put forth by a cottage industry of assassination theorists, the fact is: a guy (or two) shot our president.  Just like a civilian with a gun shot President Reagan, and two different folks fired at Ford, and someone shot Theodore Roosevelt, and McKinley, Garfield, Lincoln and Jackson.  And this sorry list fails to include the many presidents who avoided intended bullets and plots.

While I’ve despaired, like many, over the mounting – you could say grotesque, influence the National Rifle Association lords over Congress, I’ve also held onto a portion of JFK’s Inaugural Speech, addressing us as: My fellow citizens of the world: Ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.  It’s a sentiment that has also marked us Boomers and continues to do so should we choose to act.  I think we have no choice.

I believe the time has come to reconsider how we wish to leave our country for our children and theirs.  As the anniversary of the school shooting in Newtown, Massachusetts, approaches, I believe that together, we have the ability to spare our children and country from more of these random acts of rage.  In fact, no stranger to a despairing guy bearing a loaded gun, Senator Dianne Feinstein and her office welcome our help in legislating tougher gun control.  We can make this a reality.

Denise Bostrom, Piedmont Resident

Editors’ Note:  The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of the Piedmont Civic Association.


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