Dear Delegate Vallario,
On behalf of the Allegany County Branch of the NAACP, we are writing to express our support for the pending legislation to reduce gun violence in the state of Maryland. This letter is being submitted separately to Vice Chair Dumais, and copies are being sent to the remaining members of the House Judiciary Committee.
As proponents of safe, sane and sensible gun violence prevention laws, policies and programs, we believe that the pending legislation includes the essentials that will keep families safer and curb gun violence in the state of Maryland.
If passed in its entirety the legislation will improve current state laws to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and other dangerous persons, while upholding the second amendment rights of law abiding gun owners .
In particular, we support the gun safety provisions to establish a ban on all assault weapons and to reduce the allowable magazine capacity from 20 rounds to 10 rounds.
We also support the gun licensing provision that will reduce the illegal flow of weapons to criminals, while carving out an exception for gun purchases by hunters and sportsmen for hunting rifles and shotguns.
Similar license-to-purchase laws have been passed in other states and are proven to be effective. According to a study published in the Journal of Urban Health in 2009, interstate gun trafficking was 68 percent lower in cities located in a state with a license-to-purchase requirement.
A recent Washington Post poll finds that Marylanders strongly support the gun safety provisions in the pending legislation.
Overall, more than 60 percent favor stricter gun laws in Maryland and on a federal level. Across the state, 85 percent are in favor of the gun licensing plan with 73 percent indicating “strong” support.
We urge you to stand up against lobbyists for gun manufacturers who strive to preserve the status quo and block even the most common sense and widely accepted gun safety proposals. They have spread falsehoods and half-truths to provoke fear and paranoia.
The gun safety provisions in the pending legislation protect the Second Amendment rights of responsible citizens, do not ban handguns, and are consistent with the Constitution of the United States.
In addition to the gun safety provision, we support the school safety provisions which include security enhancements such as cameras at school entrances, automatically locking doors, shatterproof glass, and buzzer entry systems.
We also support the proposals to improve data sharing among state and federal officials for background checks and provisions for better mental health delivery services and early intervention to reduce potentially violent behavior.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, acts of gun violence take the lives of approximately 30,000 Americans each year in America.
Gun violence is one of the leading causes of death among teens, and communities of color suffer disproportionately.
The majority of the shootings go unnoticed by the national media, but to the families and loved ones the tragedies are no less real.
We trust we can count on you to support the pending legislation to reduce gun violence in the state of Maryland. The Firearm Safety Act will save the lives of innocent people.
Bernard Wynder, president
Robin Summerfield, political action chair
Richard Jones, communications chair
Allegany County Branch, NAACP
Dear Delegate Vallario,
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Sick leave bill would benefit Marylanders
The Cumberland Times-News Feb. 27 article, “Chamber of Commerce opposes bills for required paid sick leave” (Page 1A) presented a one-sided account of a measure that could improve the lives and communities of more than 700,000 Marylanders.
Something on this list just might help you to save a soul
Every day, 18 veterans commit suicide. Every week, thousands of American children commit economic suicide by quitting school.
Money wasted on roundabout could have been spent in city
When the idea of a roundabout on the Route 220 off Interstate 68, that was the biggest mistake the state had made.
Who doesn’t love a mystery, especially when it involves gold.
Theories are springing up around a $10 million trove of gold coins found on their land by a Northern California couple who wisely have chosen to remain anonymous.
America, the ball is now in your court
A question for Americans: Do you still want to control your government as the Constitution allows, or would you rather just let government take control of everything you do? If you chose the latter, why?
Thanks for keeping Frostburg businesses’ sidewalks clean
The Design Committee of FrostburgFirst, A Main Street Maryland Community, would like to express their appreciation for the snow removal from the sidewalks of the business district.
How can we respect a religion when it subjugates women?
In 1649, Maryland was the first colony to enact the first law ever to guarantee the right of worship regardless of its Christian denomination.
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It is a very rare event for me to agree with any politician irrespective of their party. And here I find myself agreeing with Delegate Kevin Kelly (“Plan to establish bike lanes is both absurd and dangerous,” Feb. 27 Times-News).
Roundabout could have been the scene of a fatal accident
I am writing this letter because I am concerned with the safety of this fiasco Maryland calls a roundabout. I call it a death trap waiting to happen. (“Runaway SHA truck injures driver,” Feb. 26 Times-News, Page 3B)
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