The writer of the Monday letter, “Guns alone kill 11,000 a year,” is entirely correct; as horrible as that sounds, she leaves out some hugely pertinent contextual data. Tobacco use kills 529,000 per year, medical errors kill 195,000, unintentional deaths 118,000, alcohol abuse 107,000, motor vehicles 34,000, unintentional poisoning 31,000, drug abuse 25,000, unintentional falls, 24,000, non-firearm homicides 16,000.
As horrible as Sandy Hook was, we have larger problems to work on, in the order of 10 times and even hundreds times that of firearms deaths. According FBI statistics, the weapon of choice in homicides in the U.S. is the baseball bat, and that by many times that of legally owned firearms. So let us not get hysterical and deprive 10s of millions of legal gun owners of their rights under that Constitution. Let us think with cool heads and clear minds and tackle the big problem areas first.