Gun Control Debate Reaches Alaska After School Shooting
Alaskans generally opposed to more gun restrictions
ANCHORAGE - In the wake of the tragedy in Connecticut, there has been a call to put more restrictions on guns nationwide. One of the most vocal advocates for gun control after students at Newtown were gunned down was Mayor Michael Bloomberg. He called for the national goverment to do something: "We need immediate national action from the president and congress. It should be at the top of their agenda," he said in a speech.
Second Amendment rights are important to Wayne Ross, who is a board member for the National Rifle Association and advocate for gun rights in the state. He said people that want to restrict gun sales have the wrong priorities. "We need to regain a bit of moral ground in this country. We have laws agains murder, we have laws against carrying arms on school grounds. It's just feel good legislation."
And based on your comments on Facebook, it appears Alaskans agree. One viewer wrote on the KTVA page, "If someone wants to use armed forces to cause harm, they will find the means of obtaining that weapon."
None of the respondents were in favor of tougher laws.
It isn't surprising if you look at the statistics.
The Brady Campaign, in favor of gun control, wants the United States to make it more difficult for criminals to get their hands on guns. They rated every state in the nation on a scale from 0 to 100, 100 being the most restrictive. Alaska's score was 0. The organization said it's because "Alaska has weak gun laws that help feed the illegal gun market and allow the sale of guns without background checks."
The Centers for Disease Control also reports Alaska has the third highest rate of firearm deaths. Only Louisiana and Washington D. C. have more.