Jessica Fischer says she is surprised some of the gun-control laws President Obama is asking Congress to pass aren't already in place.
A.J. Linscott says some, like a ban on so-called assault-style weapons, would violate Americans' basic rights.
It's a debate that will only intensify after the president announced proposals to curb gun violence Wednesday.
Fischer, 31, of Parkersburg, said measures like banning military-style weapons and limiting magazines to 10 rounds just make sense. So does requiring background checks on all gun sales.
"I have young children, so it does kind of freak me out that it's not something that's already done," she said. "You don't know who you're selling that gun to. You don't know what they're going to do with it."
Linscott, a Marietta police officer, said he doesn't think the background check measure is needed, but "I don't have any heartburn over it."
Date:1/16/2013 3:08 PM
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Obama administration plan for curbing gun violence
The Associated Press
Proposals for curbing gun violence announced Wednesday by President Barack Obama:
NEEDS CONGRESSIONAL ACTION:
Requiring background checks on all gun sales. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence says 40 percent of gun sales are conducted with no criminal background check, such as at gun shows and by private sellers over the Internet or through classified ads. Obama said there should be exceptions for cases like certain transfers among family members and temporary transfers for hunting purposes.
Reinstating the assault weapons ban. A 10-year ban on high-grade, military-style weapons expired in 2004. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., says such a ban might clear the Senate but doubts it could get through the House.
Renewing a 10-round limit on the size of ammunition magazines.
Prohibiting the possession, transfer, manufacture and import of dangerous armor-piercing bullets.
Senate confirmation of a director for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The agency has been run by an acting director, Todd Jones, whom Obama will nominate to become director.
New gun trafficking laws penalizing people who help criminals get guns.
Address legal barriers in health laws that bar some states from making available information about people who are prohibited from having guns.
Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system.
Make sure that federal agencies share relevant information with the background check system.
Direct the attorney general to work with other agencies to review existing laws to make sure they can identify individuals who shouldn't have access to guns.
Direct the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other research agencies to conduct research into the causes and prevention of gun violence.
Clarify that no federal law prohibits doctors or other health care providers from contacting authorities when patients threaten to use violence.
Give local communities the opportunity to hire up to 1,000 school resource officers and counselors.
Require federal law enforcement to trace all recovered guns.
Propose regulations that will enable law enforcement to run complete background checks before returning firearms that have been seized.
Direct the Justice Department to analyze information on lost and stolen guns and make that information available to law enforcement.
Provide training for state and local law enforcement, first responders and school officials on how to handle active-shooter situations.
Make sure every school has a comprehensive emergency management plan.
Help ensure that young people get needed mental health treatment.
Ensure that health insurance plans cover mental health benefits.
Encourage development of new technology to make it easier for gun owners to safely use and store their guns.
Have the Consumer Product Safety Commission assess the need for new safety standards for gun locks and gun safes.
Launch a national campaign about responsible gun ownership.
What does bother him is the push to revive the ban on assault weapons that expired in 2004. It would prevent law-abiding citizens from acquiring such guns, Linscott said, but it won't stop criminals any more than Prohibition stopped lawbreakers from drinking alcohol.
"We're going to make it so the righteous person cannot get weapons," he said. "The dirtbags are going to continue to get them, because they don't worry about permits or anything like that."
Linscott said statistics have shown that banning guns doesn't cut down on crime, but increases it. For example, Washington, D.C.'s homicide rate rose 200 percent from 1976, when its gun ban was enacted, to 1991, according to The Washington Times.
Linscott said he did agree with initiatives aimed at improving mental health care that Obama proposed through executive order.
"(Gun owners) don't want guns in the hands of the wrong person," he said.
The reaction was split among Ohio's representatives in Washington as well.
"I, along with every other American, agree that what occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary School is a human tragedy," said Congressman Bill Johnson, R-Ohio, a Marietta resident, in a statement emailed to The Marietta Times. "I support efforts that will improve the identification, diagnosis and treatment of individuals who face serious mental health challenges. I will not support any legislation or executive action that seek to limit the second amendment rights of law-abiding citizens."
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, voiced support for Obama's plans, calling them "long overdue."
"Most Americans support enacting common-sense reforms that will keep our children safe from gun violence," he said in an emailed statement. "It's now time for Congress to renew the assault weapons ban, a common-sense effort to prevent the proliferation of deadly, high-powered weapons and close the gun show loophole. ... We should also work to reduce the stigma attached to mental health treatment and make sure it is available to those who need it."