Demand a National Firearms Act in 2018 like we did in 1934
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Parkland, Sandy Hook, Columbine, Orlando, Las Vegas... The list of mass shootings in the United States goes on and on. Our children are dying because of angry men who have easy access to military-style assault weapons, bump stocks and ammunition that allows them to kill dozens of innocent people in a matter of seconds, whether or not they are mentally ill, have criminal records or links to terrorist organizations. It's time to pass a National Firearms Act of 2018 that echoes the one passed in 1934 because of public outrage over the St. Valentine's Day Massacre that was facilitated by the use of use of Tommy guns, the equivalent of AR-15 rifles of today, by gangsters like Al Capone who were in cahoots with corrupt politicians in Chicago and other US cities. As the NYT article (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/16/opinion/how-the-st-valentines-day-massacre-changed-gun-laws.html points out, The National Firearms Act of 1934 took away the right of all private citizens to own Tommy guns and "required NFA designated firearms to be registered and taxed. The $200 tax was quite prohibitive at the time (equivalent to $3,659 in 2017)." (For more information on the NFA, go to: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Firearms_Act The banning of automatic firearms, together with prohibitively high taxation, greatly reduced the number of gun deaths in that era. We need national legislation, not piecemeal state-by-state and city-by-city laws to solve our national crisis of gun violence. To get rid of existing assault weapons, we could also demand that gun manufacturers be taxed to pay for buying back of all assault-style weapons, just as Australians did in their national referendum following the mass shooting in Port Arthur in 1996. The referendum in Australia did not cause a "slippery slope" to take away private ownership of hunting and sporting guns by Australian citizens, which gun control opponents in this country so fear if a buy-back program were to happen here. There has not been a mass shooting in Australia since the national referendum in 1996. Why can't we have the courage to do the same thing? Let's keep Valentine's Day a day of love, not a day of mourning!
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