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Letters: Gun buybacks defy common sense

Nassau County is encouraging residents to turn in

Nassau County is encouraging residents to turn in unlicensed and unloaded firearms as part of a gun buyback day on Saturday in Uniondale. Seen here are guns from a buyback program at Grace Cathedral in Uniondale in February 2013. Credit: Jim Staubitser

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is talking about getting illegal guns off Long Island ["Get tougher on gun traffickers," Editorial, Oct. 14].

It seems that illegal guns that make their way to Long Island are sold to gangs. These same guns are used in criminal activities, terrorizing innocent citizens.

On the other hand, many public officials organize highly successful gun buybacks. With no questions asked, you can get up to $400, depending on the weapon you turn in. Is this lunacy?

Crime does pay on Long Island. Here you can get a gun illegally, commit a crime and then have the county buy the gun.

Mike Pedano, South Farmingdale

E.J. Dionne Jr.'s column "Let's recast U.S. debate over guns" [Oct. 9] details smart and bold ways to address the appalling lack of sensible gun legislation in this country. I agree the federal government should use procurement policies to force the gun industry to manufacture safer guns and crack down on bad dealers.

However, it will take Congress, which is controlled by the Republican majority, to approve such measures. Incredibly, this Republican Congress is so beholden to the gun manufacturers that it forbids the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to track and research gun violence statistics.

If House Republicans block the CDC from even studying gun violence, surely they will block federal agencies from even purchasing guns with safer mechanisms to prevent gun deaths.

Steve Israel, Huntington

Editor's note: The writer is a Democrat and represents New York's 3rd District in the U.S. House of Representatives.


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