Opinion: Viewpoints on guns in America 2019

(Chuck Liddy/Raleigh News & Observer/TNS)

(Chuck Liddy/Raleigh News & Observer/TNS)

A procession of mass shootings — three last month alone — continue to dominate headlines and fuel calls for action that might help stem the human cost.

We can recall multiple shootings in places whose names we can’t forget: Dayton, Odessa, El Paso, Sandy Hook, Orlando, and others.

Meanwhile, the uniquely American debate over gun rights and possible gun regulations continues on. Predictably, for this age, partisan sides are sharply drawn. And any potential remedies large or small seem to be trumped by the strength of the status quo.

In recent years, this newspaper’s Editorial Board has more than once acknowledged that, yes, the Second Amendment does strongly back a constitutional right to own guns.

Yet, it was none other than staunchly conservative U.S. Supreme Court Justice the late Antonin Scalia who famously wrote that gun rights, like any other legal right, are not without reasonable limits.

We’ve also editorialized that, in some instances, more regulation applies to driving, or owning a vehicle, than to the ownership of firearms. Society seems fine with requiring drivers to have licenses and insurance and be tested on their competence in operating a motor vehicle.

Given those points, it would seem reasonable to wonder just why lawmakers and the society they represent seem unable to move toward sincerely and thoroughly assessing just where things now stand on the balance between gun rights and public safety. It shouldn’t be an unreasonable ask.

Today, we present several other viewpoints on this issue from local writers.


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Andre Jackson, for the Editorial Board.