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Nation of laws must protect the rights of the lawful

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board Published: January 18, 2013
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Getting past the political will be a tremendous challenge. This isn't an issue that's split evenly along party lines — many members of the president's own party are uncomfortable with the idea of weapons bans.

We appreciated the comments by U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Muskogee. A solid defender of the Second Amendment, Coburn said Congress is responsible for reviewing and adjusting laws when needed, and he looks forward to a full and open debate on this issue.

“Instead of repeating the failed policies of the past, Congress should work on thoughtful and constitutional ways to prevent unspeakable tragedies like this from happening again,” he said. “The fact that almost every public mass shooting tragedy occurs in a place where guns are prohibited shows that restricting Second Amendment rights tends to disarm everyone but the assailant.”

He also said it's incumbent on gun owners to do all they can to keep their firearms and ammunition from getting into the wrong hands, and that policy shouldn't be dictated by special-interest groups. Instead, Coburn said, “As elected officials, we should be beholden solely to the Constitution.”

Obama has never been one to let a crisis go to waste. He's not the first politician to exploit a tragedy in a pursuit of an agenda. But a government of laws must protect the rights of the lawful as well as protect us from the outlaws.

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board
The Oklahoman Editorial Board consists of Gary Pierson, President and CEO of The Oklahoma Publishing Company; Christopher P. Reen, president and publisher of The Oklahoman; Kelly Dyer Fry, editor and vice president of news; Christy Gaylord...
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Instead of repeating the failed policies of the past, Congress should work on thoughtful and constitutional ways to prevent unspeakable tragedies like this from happening again. The fact that almost every public mass shooting tragedy occurs in a place where guns are prohibited shows that restricting Second Amendment rights tends to disarm everyone but the assailant.”

Sen. Tom Coburn,

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