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Letter: From Ayotte, a discouraging read

The May 7 Monitor included a column from Sen. Kelly Ayotte defending her vote against the gun background check (“I voted to defend background check system”). It’s a discouraging read.

Marian Wright Edelman of the Children’s Defense Fund reports that gun violence has killed 119,079 children and teenagers since 1979. Edelman states that the 119,000 children killed since 1979 would fill 4,763 classrooms with 25 children in each classroom.

A total of 1.3 million children and adults have been killed by gun violence since Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy were assassinated in 1968. That number almost equals the population of this state.

Almost as many Americans have been killed by gun violence since 1968 as have been killed in all our wars since the Revolutionary War.

At this point, Ayotte’s voice and the National Rifle Association’s message are identical. Instead of speaking for the 119,079 children killed by gun violence since 1979, Ayotte’s voice is joined with the NRA and the gun manufacturers in extinguishing those voices.

I have to believe there is a part of Ayotte that would rather be a voice for past and future children as opposed to being in lockstep with an industry connected with so much death. Surely there is a part of her that would like to be associated with the attempt to save 1.3 million lives in the coming 45 years. Even a few small steps in that direction would be encouraging.



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