I write concerning the incredible availability of hand guns to our society. It’s great that both New Jersey and New York have strong gun laws, but the strength of these laws is diluted when a criminal can travel to a state with more relaxed laws to buy a gun for resale in our community – this is an outrage.
I am in favor of law abiding citizens who wish to responsibly purchase and own a firearm. At the same time, we must examine the risk of guns, as 72 police officers were killed last year, in the United States. Young people having access to handguns is a recurring theme on our nightly newscasts.
I encourage federal legislators across the nation to put politics aside and sign a uniform gun bill into law. Give our law enforcement officers a fighting chance. Let’s take the guns that are purchased in Florida off of the streets in Union City, Jersey City, Newark and New York City. What in the world are we waiting for?
The federal government is too busy deporting “illegal aliens” instead of spending money and saving lives. While I understand the need for some immigration reform, the majority of those being deported did not commit a crime and work in jobs that most Americans would never accept.
To offer an example of the federal governments misguided priorities, it is worth noting that the budget for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives – the federal agency responsible for keeping illegal guns off of our streets – was just over $1.1 billion, while the budget of Immigration and Customs Enforcement is approximately $5.8 billion.
Sadly, too many fall for sound bites regarding illegal immigrants, even though most serve your food, make your home repairs, shovel your snow and wash your car. The concern of the federal government should be with proper immigration reform – let’s not forget what makes this country so great.
Our federal government owes it to all of us to understand our priorities – no matter the location of our residence, income or the color of our skin.
I encourage the public to pressure President Obama and Congress to end partisan politics and pass a national gun bill.
Brian P. Stack
Mayor and State Senator