THIS STORY HAS BEEN FORMATTED FOR EASY PRINTING
ARE GUNS LIKE OTHER ITEMS?

Guns’ principal purpose is to kill or threaten

June 27, 2010

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IN “THE instrument of crime remains only an instrument" (op-ed, June 20), Jeff Jacoby compares handgun violence to criminal acts involving video cameras, kitchen knives, steel pipes, and extension cords, and then, concludes it is “simply illogical’’ to enact gun control laws without similar prohibitions on these items.

What is simply illogical is how Jacoby ignores that the principal property of a handgun is to project a bullet at lethal velocity toward a target to inflict bodily injury, or create such a threat. Obviously, any physical object can be used in a manner apart from its design for criminal purposes, but this is not its principal property.

Regardless of other arguments claiming a defensive benefit or counterproductive enforcement, logic dictates that handguns be addressed in a category of their own and that effective handgun control is a compelling societal concern.

FRANK TULLY,
Newton

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