Letter sent to the Boston Globe responding to an op-ed claiming support for background checks on private sales of guns

Jun 23, 2017 | Featured

This letter wasn’t published, but it was sent to the Boston Globe after an op-ed by Comedy Central’s Jordan Klepper claiming support for background checks on private sales of guns.  The piece also makes bizarre attacks on gun owner’s masculinity.”

Dear Letters Editor:

Jordan Kleppers op-ed greatly exaggerates the level of support for more gun control and ascribes small-minded motivations to opponents of more regulations (Bringing a stat to the gun debate,” Opinion, June 11).

Do some surveys show 80 to 90 percent support for background checks on private purchases of guns?  Yes, but surveys show a dramatic fall in support when it comes to specific bills that would actually create such reformVoters have shown little enthusiasm when presented with ballot initiatives.   Take Michael Bloomberg’s two initiatives last year.  In Maine, he outspent his opponents by over six times but still lost the vote by 4%.  In Nevada, he spent an incredible $35.30 per vote — three times more than his opponents — and won by just 0.8%. 

Klepper paints gun controllers as advancing constructive policy” dedicated to saving lives.  Opponents, he writes, are too preoccupied with holding on to their masculinity.”  But Klepper ignores research showing that women and the elderly as well as poor blacks who live in high crime urban areas benefit the most from owning guns.  Adding expensive background check fees, as Klepper would like to do, puts guns out of reach for many poor individuals who need protection.    


John R. Lott, Jr., Ph.D.
Crime Prevention Research Center
(Visited 3 times, 1 visits today)


1 Comment

  1. OldRed

    I grew up in a time when all I needed to do to by a gun was to have the money or good credit at the sporting goods store where I had worked since I was 10 years to pay for a gun and ammo. It didn’t matter if I was in Oklahoma. Texas or ordered in the mail as long as my money was good. I was buying, selling and repairing guns by the time I was 14. I made good money on one model of Marlin 22 automatic that had a temperamental trigger spring that I found a better way to make out of music wire.

    I can’t see that any laws we have passed since then changed things much. A kid or a criminal can still buy a gun and ammo. The only difference is not it illegal for the kid to buy or have the gun or ammo. One day my wife was buying groceries and noticed my 17 year old bother in the parking lot. When she came out he needed her to buy him some ammo for the same 241 Speedmaster I use to shoot rabbits to go rabbit hunting.

    If a kit can’t get an adult to buy a gun or ammo for them they just go to some one that is willing to break the law and bring them in closer contact to the criminal world we should protect them from. They won’t deal in guns as freely as I did because it cost them too much nor will they be a safe as I was because very few kids have access to Boy Scouts and the Schools that have gun safety training or marksmanship training any more.

    Unlike what the media preaches to day kids can be safe with guns
    I started hunting Jack rabbits by myself when I was ten with a Stevens 20 gauge double barrel shot gun. Dad paid me a dollar each and I bought the ammo. My allowance ended when that started. That was tough year economically for me. When I turned 11 he let me use his 241 Remington Speedmaster that shot 22 shorts. Going from two shots that cost 20 cents each to 15 that cost a penny a piece saw a quick turn around in my income from rabbit hunting.

    My grandmother was hunting Prairie Chickens for the pot and gathering Buffalo chips to cook them with when she was 8 using a cap lock musket on a ranch about 30 miles south of Harrold Texas. Maybe we are closing the circle with Harrold being one of the first if not the first school district to allow teachers as staff to carry guns at school. I am proud of the School Taxes I paid there.