A survivor of the Columbine High School shootings has penned a letter to President Obama in opposition to a federal crackdown on guns, arguing that those responsible for the botched Fast and Furious gun-running operation should be the most scrutinized.
In a lengthy letter released Wednesday and published by news and opinion website The Blaze, Evan Todd, who was wounded during the 1999 shootings in which two teenage gunmen killed 12 students and a teacher before taking their own lives, wrote:
Mr. President, these are your words: “And finally, Congress needs to help, rather than hinder, law enforcement as it does its job. We should get tougher on people who buy guns with the express purpose of turning around and selling them to criminals. And we should severely punish anybody who helps them do this.” Why don’t we start with Eric Holder and thoroughly investigate the Fast and Furious program?
Fast and Furious was an attempt by ATF to stop the flow of illegal weapons into Mexico by allowing “straw buyers” to walk the weapons — including hundreds of AK-47 semiautomatic assault rifles — into Mexico with a goal of tracking them to drug cartel leaders. But the ATF lost track of hundreds of the weapons, 1,400 of which are still unaccounted for.
The letter touches on several key reforms Mr. Obama wants to make to control gun sales and ownership laws — none of which, including banning assault weapons, would work, Mr. Todd said.
“Criminals and murderers will always find a way,” he wrote.
The nation had in place an assault weapons ban from 1994 to 2004 — and that didn’t stop the Columbine massacre, Mr. Todd argued in the letter.
“It was during this time that I personally witnessed two fellow students murder twelve of my classmates and one teacher,” he wrote. “The assault weapons ban did not deter these two murderers, nor did the other thirty-something laws that they broke.”
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Cheryl Chumley is a continuous news writer for The Washington Times. Previously, she was part of the start-up team for The Washington Times’ digital aggregation product, Times247. She’s also a 2008-2009 Robert Novak journalism fellow with The Phillips Foundation. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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